6.8/10
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7 user 13 critic

Casting About (2005)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 11 May 2007 (USA)
A lyrical documentary about the experience of casting actresses for a dramatic film.

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Cast

Credited cast:
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Herself
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Herself
Jeannette Arndt ...
Herself
Solveig August ...
Herself
Nina Bagusat ...
Herself
Kristina Bangert ...
Herself
Silvana Bayer ...
Herself
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Herself
Amalie Bizer ...
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Herself
Hannah Bourne ...
Herself
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Herself
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Herself
Julia Bremermann ...
Herself
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Storyline

A lyrical documentary about the experience of casting actresses for a dramatic film.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Documentary

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Release Date:

11 May 2007 (USA)  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$893, 11 May 2007, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,922, 12 August 2007
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(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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User Reviews

 
The agony and the audition
18 May 2006 | by See all my reviews

Casting About follows a group of actresses in five cities as they audition for parts in an independent film that the director, Barry Hershey, was intending to write and direct. There are three leading female roles available and these actresses pour their hearts into the auditions. Initially the auditions were to blend with the fictional narrative. Some actors signed waivers for this 'second film' that we are seeing, others were not willing to do so. But what we get is a thoroughly compelling group of attractive, convincing, and very talented professionals. They are in effect doing double duty, both performing and auditioning. But then that's the nature of the professional audition. There is none of the usual comedy associated auditioning that we often see in fiction films. This is serious business. They bring their lives and their souls to these moments, so much so that it can become uncomfortable at times. But that is the uncomfortable truth of auditions. Often men are the ones holding the audition and so there is an added element of power relationships involved.

The filmmakers make the interesting choice to keep the camera only on the actors, mostly in close up and extreme close up. We examine their bodies, hands, feet, eyes, lips, skin and creep into the emotional core of the actor's 'truth'. Though an actress friend I was with found the shooting style manipulative, voyeuristic, and exploitive - isn't that the nature of film? Ultimately, it seems uncomfortably appropriate to allow us the privileged gaze (male gaze) of cinema. To step back would break the spell. The audience comes away with a pained respect for what actors must go through over and over again and often (most often) to no avail. Some of the performances are really stunning. Some bring very challenging life situations to these auditions. If you are an actor you'll squirm with recognition. For the audience you'll come away with a great respect for the dedication of the acting profession and for what often seems an invisible art.


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