I’m starting a business page on Instagram, posting about the movies I loved, liked, disliked, or hated. And when I’m done setting it up with my sister, I will post about how “Ingrid Goes West” is a brilliant take on social media stalkers and liars. It’s funny, bold, emotional, and gripping.
Aubrey Plaza gives a game changing performance as Ingrid, a social media stalker with metal problems, who is glued to Instagram. She reads a magazine with a girl named Taylor (Elizabeth Olsen), who says: “I love making friends with people all over the world.” She takes it serious, and decides to head over to Venice Beach, with the $60,000 her late mother left her, in order to find Taylor.
Taylor is a photographer who claims she is happily married to Ezra (Wyatt Russell). They have a dog, whom Ingrid takes in order to return it to them for the sake of their would-be friendship. As Ingrid and Taylor spend time together, they start to realize their social media posts are not always what they appear to be.
Another friend Ingrid makes is her druggie landlord Dan (O’Shea Jackson, Jr.-Ice Cube’s son), who is an avid Batman fan and screenplay writer. He has to play her boyfriend, even though it takes off. And a new enemy she makes is Taylor’s brother Nicky (Billy Magnussen), who eventually finds out about Ingrid’s stalking.
Other than some lines I didn’t like to hear, “Ingrid Goes West” deserved to be a hit at the Sundance Film Festival. Co-written and directed by Matt Spicer, the movie entertains you with how this stalker is well-meaning-how she has feelings and issues. At a TimesTalks q&a I attended, he even explains the purpose of its conclusion effectively.
The performances from Plaza, Olsen, and Jackson, Jr. are spot on; the choices are challenging; the jokes are sharp; and the intro jumpstarts the movie.