MY ZOE – Review by Susan Wloszczyna

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Ever since I first saw Julie Delpy in Before Sunrise, the first film in Richard Linklater’s top-notch romantic trllogy, I’ve always found her to be casually mesmerizing and naked with her feelings in a way that only a handful of actresses could ever achieve. That is also true with her latest project, “My Zoe,” where she proves to be a triple threat as the female lead, director and writer.

Delpy also proves to be a bit of a trickster, presenting what seems to be a domestic melodrama about combative ex-spouses who can’t let go of their bitterness and acrimony that morphs into something like futuristic sci-fi thriller that stretches ethical boundaries.

Both adore their sweet grade-school age daughter, the Zoe of the title, but it is a tug of war when it comes to sharing custody. Richard Armitage carries the heavy burden of being James, a bit of a bastard, as he tries to guilt Delpy’s Isabelle into always getting his way and insisting she is the one who isn’t fair.

But a tragic accident upends everyone’s life and it seems that all is lost. Turns out, however, that might not be the case as we eventually find out that immunologist Isabelle has a few tricks up her sleeve and the right connections to attempt a possible human miracle. Delpy sprinkles a few clues that this story takes place in the near-future as everyday high-tech items are far more sophisticated. But like her character, Delpy is brave enough to allow the science to take a back seat while emotions come first.

EDITOR’S NOTE:My Zoe is AWFJ’s Movie of the Week for February 25, 2021

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Susan Wloszczyna

Susan Wloszczyna

In her nearly 30 years at USA Today, Susan Wloszczyna interviewed everyone from Vincent Price and Shirley Temple to Julia Roberts and Will Smith. Her coverage specialties include animation, musicals, comedies and any film starring Hayley Mills, Sandy Dennis or hobbits. Her crowning career achievements so far, besides having Terence Stamp place his bare feet in her lap during an interview for The Limey, is convincing the paper to send her to New Zealand twice for set visits, once for The Return of the King and the other for The Chronicles of Narnia and King Kong, and getting to be a zombie extra and interview George Romero in makeup on the set for Land of the Dead. Though not impressive enough for Pulitzer consideration, she also can be blamed for coining the moniker "Frat Pack," often used to describe the comedy clique that includes Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn and Will Ferrell. Her positions have included Life section copy desk chief for four years and a film reviewer for 12 years. She is currently a contributor for the online awards site Gold Derby and is an Oscar expert for RogerEbert.com. Previously, she has been a freelance film reporter and critic, contributing regularly to RogerEbert.com, MPAA’s The Credits, the Washington Post, AARP The Magazine online and Indiewire as well as being a book reviewer for The Buffalo News. She previously worked as a feature editor at the Niagara Gazette in Niagara Falls, N.Y. A Buffalo native, she earned her bachelor's degree in English at Canisius College and a master's degree in journalism from Syracuse University.