SUNDANCE REVIEW – “Am I OK?”
From first-time directors Tig Notaro and Stephanie Allynne comes Am I Ok? – which follows the story of Lucy and Jane, played by Dakota Johnson and Sonoya Mizuno. Lucy and Jane are absolutely inseparable from one another; they go to the same bars together, know each others deepest secrets, and even remember the others exact breakfast orders at their local diner. In fact, they’re so close that when Jane gets a job offer in London and decides to take it, this sends Lucy down a spiral of both addressing her attachment to her best friend but questioning her identity alone from her best friend.
Tig Notaro is a comedian that I’ve admired for most of my adult life, so Am I Ok? was definitely one of my most anticipated films of the Sundance Film Festival this year. While the film doesn’t necessarily break a ton of new-ground, I’m really happy to say that it is an insanely sweet and very touching film about friendship and also learning to love and discover yourself independent from other people.
A film about this deep of a friendship/connection is only as good as the performances and chemistry between the two people playing those roles. Thankfully, they have two tremendous performers in these roles with Dakota Johnson and Sonoya Mizuno. From the opening scene alone, the two of them have tremendous chemistry with one another that immediately helps you buy their relationship with one another.
The film does take a bit to get going and sometimes the plot relies on tropes that you’ve definitely seen in comedies before, but when the film is being sincere (which it very often is) – it works exceptionally well. I was actually quite moved by the message of self-love and friendship that the film had to offer. It didn’t quite get a tear out of me, but I was delightfully charmed and left with a smile on my face.