Nancy Savoca started her career as a director with a bang by winning the Sundance Grand Jury Prize for her debut film True Love that told the tale of a wedding in the Bronx. Now, she has chosen to return to her gritty roots with her latest raw film. titled Union Square. While it is likely that Savoca could have come up with some type of budget for the film, she chose to forgo a budget and instead focus on creating a film out of the characters and the lack of cinematography that often glosses over the heary of a film.
When the film kicks off you might mistake Mira Sorvino as the hooker from Mighty Aphrodite given the fact she is dressed in a skimpy skirt, a black lace tank top, and ankle boots. The fake highlights and fur around the boots really set the entire look off, but in reality her character, Lucy, is just another girl from the Bronx who is attempting to be fashionable with what she can find in the discount fashion bins. Her one dream is that she hooks up permanently with the married businessman she has been dating so that she can get out of this meaningless life.
Of course, he brushes her off, which leads to a semi-meltdown on Lucy’s behalf in a scene that is meant to be funny, but is actually almost an assault given the fact that Lucy is so crass about the matter that it is hard to feel sorry for her. The reprieve of the film is Tammy Blanchard, who plays Lucy’s distant sister Jenny, and is the exact opposite and easy to want to like. Lucy quickly crashes on an unhappy Jenny’s couch and slowly the distant between the two sisters plays out into the heart of the film.
It only takes a few minutes for Lucy to blow Jenny’s world wide open as she invites her friend Sarah in for Vodka and some loud outrageous partying, blowing Jenny’s entire story that she is just a nice girl that moved to the area from Maine. However later. when Lucy tells Jenny that their mother is dead. her exterior melts a bit and she starts to show signs that she regrets closing her family out of her life as she attempted to better her situation. It seems that losing touch with her roots has hurt her in an unexpected manner as well.
As the film continues to move along Savoca has a few surprises up her sleeve, but the most impressive fact is that she once again continues to show normal woman in a surprising light and carefully reveals their inner thoughts and lives. The friction and love between the two sisters plays well as the two emotions fight to be the main story line. What is left over turns out to be a pleasant experience for everyone involved, and the ending is just enough to be believable without leaving the viewer empty and dissatisfied.