Actress Amalia Ullman is ready for you to know her name, if the trailer for her debut movie “El Planeta” is anything to go by. This first look at the film — which Ulman wrote, directed, produced, and starred in — is sure to catch your eye, thanks to its distinctive black-and-white visuals and grim comedic sensibilities.
With Ulman starring in front of her mother (Ale Ulman), “El Planeta” covers a week-long cycle where the daughter returns home, reconnects with her eccentric mother, and meets a man – meanwhile, her mother faces eviction.
Far from exploitative portrayal of economic hardship, the film is inspired by the experiences of Amalia Ullmann who grew up in the small coastal city of Gijon, Spain, in a region hard hit by the global financial meltdown of 2009. “It is true that my mother and I lost our home and suffered from homelessness and starvation,” she explained in the film’s press materials. “. “This experience allowed us to approach the film with humor and honesty. There are notes about myself in the character … [yet] All the characters are purely fictional – they are composed of many other people and ideas. ”
With its exploration of contemporary poverty, women’s desire, and the always complex relationships between mothers and daughters, “El Planeta” seems to have a lot to say—and it’s already generated an uproar. The Spanish-language film premiered at Sundance earlier this year, where it was nominated for a Grand Jury Award in the World Cinema (Dramatic) category. He received accolades from the likes of Miranda Julio.
As an artist, Amalia Ullman’s work includes video essays such as “Sordid Scandal”, commissioned by Tate Modern in the UK.
“El Planeta” opens in New York on September 24, and in Los Angeles a week later. A nationwide rollout and VOD release will begin on October 8.