This is the first thing you see in Ken Wardrop’s “His and Hers” and ironically, it’s the most thought-provoking, as the documentary ultimately ends up lacking the needed charisma, polish and depth to make itself truly enjoyable.
Well-known for his short films, Wardrop stretches what could have been a half-hour documentary into an 80-minute long smorgasbord of female narratives about the male figures in their lives. Despite being a great topic and possessing a few great stories, there’s just not enough to keep you enthralled the entire way through. Had the film maintained the carefree narratives of the children that it presented in the beginning and found a way to comb in the wonderfully emotional tale of the last elderly woman in the end, this could have been an entirely different piece.
Instead, you’re forced to listen to way too many stories of people who aren’t even remotely interesting. Filmed in Ireland, some of the women are even hard to understand, making some scenes more a chore than a reward.
Nevertheless, “His and Hers” is endearing and at other times witty, showing its true potential. Regardless of the small rays of light that seep through the shadows however, the truly engaging accounts of these women are pushed behind ones that are boring, flat and uneventful. Because of that, regardless of the adorable children and candid topic of conversation, you’ll find yourself getting agitated more than anything else. While listening to a teenager talk about boys texting her, with slang and colloquialisms galore, is funny and will remind many women of their own time at the age, it’s nowhere near as poignant as some of the other stories.
Like a stale Oreo cookie, there’s still some crème in the middle that’s worth digging through, but it won’t provide the type of cinematic sustenance you’re craving.
Had this film focused more on the one of a kind stories and ones that truly cement the relationships between men and women, “His and Hers” could have easily been a winner. However, with documentaries such as “Waiting for Superman” and “Family Affair” capturing a hefty amount of attention at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, this is one you won’t feel bad about for skipping out on.
Patrick Hickey Jr.
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