I Am Woman is an inspirational story of believing in yourself, walking in the fire, and coming out stronger. Tilda Cobham-Hervey as Helen Reddy delivers a strong performance as a struggling single mother from Australia who lands in New York to sign a recording contract.
Her hopes are squashed when Artie Mogul (Chris Parnell) the executive at Mercury Records informs her she didn’t win a record contract she won an audition. And taking her on is too risky. It’s clear to Helen that the male executives running the music industry have their own vision about the type of music the public wants.
With a young child in tow and to make ends meet Helen begins singing in small clubs around New York. The pay is low but her choices are limited. Her friend Lillian Roxon (Danielle MacDonald) also from Australia who wrote a rock n roll encyclopedia encourages her to forge ahead with her music. One night she meets Jeff Wald(Evan Peters) who sweeps her off her feet. Jeff sees California as the best place for Helen’s career and he will be her Manager.
At first, Lillian is a little cautious about Helen leaving for California but realizes this could be a good move. Jeff knows just what it takes to make Helen a star and lays out a plan for her success. They get a large beautiful home though they are not in the position to afford it Jeff insists in Los Angeles it’s all about image.
With Helen’s determination, she pushes Jeff to honor his promise as her Manager. Making him call Artie Mogull (Chris Parnell) to the point of harassment until he breaks down and offers to record one song. Jeff is finally doing what he promises he can do getting airplay and Helen is finally seen as a bonafide music artist.
The catalyst song that pushes her to the forefront of the feminism movement and the world is I Am Woman. The song showcasing women’s frustration with being categorized as just a housewife, just a secretary, etc. Women who are not taken seriously in a society that seems in intent on holding them back. It was time for a change and I Am Woman became the tribal heartbeat for all women.
But like any fairy tale, the Prince who saves you may not be so charming and with the pressures of fame, Helen has to make some tough choices.
Debut director Unjoo Moon gives us a movie that shines with love for Helen’s impact on the Feminist movement. Is there still work to be done, indeed, especially in the current climate of the #metoomovent. Films that can help us find the courage to take charge of our lives and inspire change makes life worth living.
- Starring | Tilda Cobham-Hervey, Danielle Macdonald and Evan Peters
- Directed by | Unjoo Moon
- Written by | Emma Jensen
- Produced by | Rosemary Blight and Unjoo Moon
- Runtime | 116 minutes
- Distribution | Quiver Distribution