Interview, by Rafy Mediavilla, w/ “Holler” (IFC Films) Actress , Jessica Barden. Out Now In Selected Theaters, Digital & Video On Demand. #Holler #NicoleRiegel #JessicaBarden #IFCFilms
In a forgotten pocket of Southern Ohio where American manufacturing and opportunity are drying up, a determined young woman finds a ticket out when she is accepted to college. Alongside her older brother, Ruth Avery joins a dangerous scrap metal crew in order to pay her way. Together, they spend one brutal winter working the scrap yards during the day and stealing valuable metal from the once thriving factories by night. With her goal in sight, Ruth finds that the ultimate cost of an education for a girl like her may be more than she bargained for, and she soon finds herself torn between a promising future and the family she would leave behind.
CRITICOLOGOS: I think is safe to say that you have being on a roll since Coronation Street, to Penny Dreadful, The End of The F World, & Now Pink Skies Ahead, & of course Holler, you’ve managed to stay grounded from big project to indie ones, what is it about Holler that catch your eye?
Jessica Barden: First of all, thank you so much for saying that, like I’ve been on a roll, that feels great. I mean, it probably looks like that from the outside, but from the inside sometimes it feels really different to that.
What attracts me to this role was working with a filmmaker like Nicole and she was so passionate about this movie. So I mean just so driven with it, such a strong person when I met her, she had such a strong vision for the film, and you know, pretty much told me that. It was going to be the most challenging thing that I’ve ever done, which sounded like. I don’t know like she didn’t think that I could do it, which obviously she’s very smart. cause then she knew that I would want to do it even more. I wanted to work with Nicole and I wanted to tell the story of Ruth and I wanted to tell a story about Ohio and these places in the world and these people.
CRITICOLOGOS: I believe Ruth can become an inspiration to all young women to fight for her own path and learn from it. What characteristics of Ruth you saw in yourself, and what did you learn from her experience?
Jessica Barden: Thank you so much. Uhm, I mean Ruth is. Like so many people you know, she the path is not clear for her. You know every dog feels I don’t even know if its doors are closed in her face. She doesn’t really know where the building is, you know so. I think that everybody can relate to that like everybody can relate to feeling like an underdog and you don’t know you know not just people that come from these parts of the world. Everybody can feel like. They don’t know how to achieve what they want to achieve, and I hope that everybody, no matter your age or your gender, what you see in Ruth is. If you have to believe in yourself, you know and you have to go after it and you know you can’t wait for anybody else to do it. You just got to do it yourself.
CRITICOLOGOS: I’m going to enter into some spoilers territory, but I want to talk about the scene where Ruth’s brother is tell her and she got into college because of some things he did for her, and Ruth is having none of it, in your opinion, what is Ruth trying to prove, or is she just being stubborn, or maybe a little bit of both?
Jessica Barden: I think that the relationship between Ruth and Blaze is really complex because there is so much love there and there’s so much dependency and there’s nobody else in their family. There’s nobody else really looking out for them, but at the same time. The stomach aren’t there as well because there isn’t anybody else, and you know that is not normal and you don’t want your parent to be your sibling. And that’s what they’re both experiencing, and there’s a lot of stress living like that as well. And like whose fault is it today? And I you know. Sadly, I think that that is really how the majority of the people in this world live. Actually, I don’t. I think it’s really rare if you have a conventional family and that relationship is just so complex. And at the same time, I think that they really feel held back by each other as well.
Ruth has to choose between a chance at a better life, and leaving her family behind, or just staying and keep running the course at it is, what life choices would you have changed to find a middle ground between these two options?
I mean, in an ideal world that would be more help. In these parts you know these parts of the world wouldn’t be forgotten and you wouldn’t have to leave home to get the job that you want to do. You know in the movie. Her teacher says to her. In your situation, you know essentially like living here with your prospects, you have to work this program. That’s it, like you’re going to get this job, and she’s like what if I don’t want to do that and the teacher is saying to her, well, you know, that’s the only choice here for Someone Like You. So she has to leave so, so ideally the middle ground is a kid that lives in Ohio can go to school and be like I want to be. Uh, I want to be a teacher. I want to be a football player. I want to be an author and they’re like great. OK, so like you sign up and go to this university and it’s not impossible, you know.
CRITICOLOGOS: What do you expect? You know maybe young girls or anyone to take away from Ruth story?
Jessica Barden: I hope that anybody. No matter what age, male or female watches this movie. I hope that. They want to go through Ohio because it’s a great place truly, why not? It’s Pearl high on the map and I hope that people realize that. They make all the choices in their life. You know. Don’t wait for a teacher to tell you it. Don’t wait for an employer or like anybody a friend to tell you that you should do something if you want to do it, you got to do it because nobody else is going to do it for you.
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