LGBT Fim Festival Review: Portrait of a Serial Monogamist (2015)


Is it possible to end a relationship with dignity? The answer is very simple, and this is exactly what Elsie Neufeld (Diane Flacks), a Toronto Jewish woman, does. She just broke up with her girlfriend, Robyn (Carolyn Taylor). But, when she meets a woman much younger than she is, she faces her mother`s disapproval, and the disappointment of her friends. So she begins to doubt herself- ‘Did she just break up with the love of her life’?

Elsie is a forty-something lesbian, as well as an accomplished breakup artist, who ends her current relationship to pursue a younger woman. This is where we find Elsie when the film begins; looking so determined, self-confident, having her life under control, she shuts a door and opens a new one which will take her life in the direction she wants. Her determination grows every day, and she makes acquaintance with a young lady who helps her get over her problems and accept that she is a serial monogamist who can`t imagine her life without being a single for even a moment.

Portrait of a Serial Monogamist is a surprisingly clever, moving film, which invites the viewer to the world of complicated and uncertain relationships. Elsie appears to be a very smart Torontonian who seems to know her every step. Directors, Christina Zeidler and John Mitchel, do very well developing Elsie’s character deeply and portray a middle aged woman’s life the way they envision it to be. This film manages to offer some dramatic scenes, along with some that are very amusing. As time passes, the viewer begins to feel engaged and becomes interested in the story of these Torontonian women, who one way or another try to make their own decisions in life.

It is very interesting to watch this Zeidler/Mitchel film and how one woman`s list of broken hearts adds up with her own, putting herself into a situation where she has to travel back to her past, to make  a better future for herself. Saying that, this film is worth watching for anyone who believes that rushing things may bring results which may not be pleasant at all….

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