If you stop to think about it for any length of time, the idea of the “Instagram celebrity” is kind of insane. We’re not talking about celebrities using the service, mind you, but the people who’ve managed to monetize their daily existence, to the point where they’re famous (and sometimes rich) just for being themselves. It’s a subject ripe for further exploration and/or satire, and Matt Spicer’s upcoming feature, Ingrid Goes West, looks to deliver both in sharp, caustic fashion.
Ingrid follows Ingrid Thorburn (Aubrey Plaza), an unstable young woman who moves to California in an attempt to befriend Taylor Sloane, the top-name “influencer” (Elizabeth Olsen) with whom she’s become obsessed thanks to Taylor’s prolific online presence. Before long, Ingrid begins to act out in increasingly reckless ways in an attempt to earn and keep Taylor’s attention. The buzz coming off the film at this year’s Sundance Film Festival was generally positive, and the film won the festival’s Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award for Spicer and David Branson Smith’s screenplay.
The premise is at once funny and unsettling, and the decidedly red-band teaser trailer suggests a film every bit as seriocomic as the early reviews have suggested. Plaza’s been enjoying a moment of late thanks to her standout work on the recently concluded first season of Legion, and we wouldn’t be surprised if she continues to ride this current wave thanks to what looks to be a uniquely bold directorial debut by Spicer.
Ingrid Goes West will be released on August 4th through Neon, the new distribution company from Alamo Drafthouse mastermind Tim League and Tom Quinn (formerly of the now-defunct RADiUS-TWC imprint). Neon’s quietly assembling an interesting slate as it enters its initial year, with the revisionist kaiju movie Colossal and the well-regarded Sundance debut Beach Rats on its upcoming schedule as well.