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Roof and Courtyard
220 36th Street, Brooklyn, New York, 11232
Take the D, N, or R trains to 36th Street
Special Sneak Preview. Focusing on the life of a sex surrogate working in Manhattan, Anja Marquardt’s impressively assured directorial debut casts a penetrating gaze on the complexities of professional intimacy. Courtesy of Baxter Brothers Film Releasing.
She's Lost Control (Anja Marquardt | 95 min.)
In her job as a sex surrogate, Ronah (Brooke Bloom) seeks to help men who, for whatever reason, have difficulty in relating to women—offering clients who are referred to her by a psychotherapist a safe environment in which to explore their issues. When she is presented with a new client, Johnny (Marc Menchaca), who in his seething anxiety appears resistant to her techniques, Ronah becomes increasingly desperate in her attempts to help him. As the prescribed parameters of their interactions begin to erode, the boundary between professional and private intimacy becomes irreversibly blurred.
While Ronah’s professional life centers on cultivating intimacy, it is exactly this that is lacking from her own life. With few friends and her sole contact with her family consisting of occasional, brusque phone calls with her brother, most of her time outside work is spent alone. Brooke Bloom evinces an astonishingly measured yet quietly powerful central performance, with each facial inflection revealing an inner sadness coursing underneath her restrained exterior. From the sterile hotel rooms where she meets her clients, among anonymous midtown buildings, to her nondescript one-bedroom apartment—each shot is infused with a pervasive sense of confinement, underpinning Ronah’s struggle to maintain her composure, as everything around her threatens to crumble.
With a style that shifts between clinical detachment and stifling intensity, Anja Marquardt’s impressively assured directorial debut casts a penetrating gaze on the phenomenon of professional intimacy, in turn presenting an insight into modern relationships that is at once complex and startlingly honest. Marquardt establishes tension with a meticulous sleight, resisting melodramatic turns to delicately expose the fractures that gradually begin to show, as her character loses control.