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Matinee Chat 5 Star Review

Netflix Studios - PIECES OF A WOMAN

DIRECTED BY:  Kornel Mundruczo

WRITTEN BY: Kata Weber

STARRING: Vanessa Kirby, Shia LaBeouf, Ellen Burstyn, Iliza Shlesinger, Benny Safdie, Sarah Snook and Molly Parker

Brought to both theaters and the small screen by Netflix Studios, Pieces of a Woman is one of a few films this year that should be garnering accolades come awards season, especially for lead actress Vanessa Kirby, as her extraordinary performance in this film will literally take your breath away. Getting rave reviews already at its showing at the Toronto Film Festival, this painfully raw and extremely emotional performance is her most incredible work to date, as she plays Martha, the corporate exec who finds herself, along with her construction worker hubby Sean (Shia LeBeouf), ready to take on parenting, any second now.

But when the home birth Martha has always wanted ends in tragedy, she finds herself unable to deal with this unimaginable loss and grief, alas becoming cold and distant to everyone around her. And as she tries desperately to find some semblance of normalcy in her darkest days, her relationships that she cherishes the most, start to implode around her. As the pain of loss literally consumes her, and as she must face a trial against her midwife (Molly Parker), as her husband and mother feel the midwife must pay for this travesty, we find Martha is faced with the reality that she has no other choice but to set the pain of this great loss free, if she is ever going to live again.

Now, if the subject matter itself in Pieces of A Woman isn’t enough to stop you in your tracks, the first 30 minutes of this film most certainly will, as it’s hard to recover from director Kornel Mundruczo’s poignant roller coaster that he takes you on, as you experience so much joy, and so much pain, in the blink of an eye. He also manages to bring out incredible performances not only from Kirby, but from Burstyn and LaBeouf as well. You also will be entranced by cinematographer Benjamin Loeb's filming this time around too, as he makes sure that Pieces of a Woman doesn’t let you hide you from the realism of life, and the pain of loss, but instead takes you deep into these struggles head on, with no way of turning back, thus making this film one of the most emotionally charged, and perfectly crafted films I’ve seen in a very long time.

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