Gas Food Lodging

Screening on Film
Directed by Allison Anders.
With Brooke Adams, Ione Skye, Fairuza Balk.
US, 1992, 35mm, color, 103 min.
English and Spanish with English subtitles.
Print source: HFA

“Women are lonely in the 90s. It’s our new phase,” deadpans Brooke Adams’ cynical Nora to her erstwhile, married beau. Living in a trailer park in a stark Western town, she struggles with raising her two teenage daughters, Trudi and Shade—flawlessly portrayed by Ione Skye and Fairuza Balk—on a waitress’ salary. Though packed with a motley cast of maverick characters, the trio of women defiantly hold the center of Allison Anders’ luminescent, emotionally adventurous coming-of-age story. Even physically bearing some resemblance to her cinematic daughters, Adams disappears into her role, rapidly cycling through a chaos of emotions—exhaustion, exasperation, anger, love, disappointment—and buffered by a defiant survival instinct her daughters have inherited. A highlight of the 90s indie film explosion, Gas Food Lodging winds quirkily and enchantingly along a laidback, dusty road glimmering with unexpected richness, rawness, romance and tragedy as each of the women blazes her own trail, however unconventional that may be. – Brittany Gravely

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