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Sundance 2020 Review: “Hey Lady!” ★★★★

© sabrina lantos

As someone who enjoys watching black-and-white cinema and comedies made back in the Golden Era of the cinematic world, I can hardly process the sense of humor of the twenty-first-century films that are largely based on offensive and coarse language. Only in very rare cases could I tolerate the expression of such thoughts which I normally decline. However, what happened with “Hey, Lady!” that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival was a refreshing piece of work, that strangely, despite its language, I enjoyed it from the start to the end.

“Hey, Lady!” follows a vibrant and energetic 75-year-old lady whose raw language spares no one. Whether it is a woman she met on a park bench or a plumber who she invited to make some adjustments to tease her son, nobody is spared, not even her psychologist. There’s no way anyone would dare tell her to do what she does not want to. She breaks all the social norms when she finds herself at the center of public attention in an absurd situation with the help of her friend Rosy. More importantly, no matter what happens, there will not be even a single scene that is not filled with laughter or snarky lines that you may end up using afterward.

From playwright Morris Panych and directed by the trio of Adriana Maggs, Sarah Polley, and Will Bowes, “Hey, Lady!” is an absolutely delightful comedy starring the brilliant Jayne Eastwood as Lady and Jackie Richardson as Rosie. Each short episode is quite exquisite and unique. Lady is the one who controls the narrative. If she wants to, the character appearing in front of her can fade to black or white, or she can simply have them disappear. The scene with the psychologist is truly remarkable. As the series itself has so many memorable scenes to mention, “Hey, Lady” breaks the norms of comedies by delivering what TV nowadays mostly can’t. So make no mistake and give it a shot, you can trust me on that. If laughter makes us younger, then there is no better way of trying it than watching “Hey, Lady!”

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