Review by Jennifer Ortega, Red Carpet Report Reporter follow Jen on Twitter @JenniferEOrtega
“Portrait of a Serial Monogamist” is an new indie rom-com both “directed and written by Christina Zeidler and John Mitchell. “Portrait” takes place in Toronto (which we are reminded over and over again). It centers on Elsie Neufeld (played by Diane Flacks), a TV producer/journalist and a forty-something year old lesbian who’s friends refer to her as a serial monogamist. Elsie must always be attached and when she tires of her girlfriend she initiates a break up and moves immediately on to the next relationship.
Her behavior is explained in the start of the film in flashbacks, where Elsie gets her heart broken as a preteen girl. From then on, she vows never to get dumped again. She has a whole list of rules for breaks-ups, the most important one, never to look back once the relationship is over.
This brings us to her current situation where she breaks up rather coldly and without much explanation to her current live in girlfriend Robyn (played by Carolyn Taylor). Elsie soon finds that dating in her 40s has its challenges. She’s outgrown the bar scene and online dating isn’t for her. Her friend takes her to a dog park and explains a plethora of rules for nabbing just the right girl at the dog park. Through all her adventures, Elsie breaks her biggest rule of not looking back and constantly thinks of Robyn.
Some of the dialogue about love is too long and cliched. Elsie’s crazy Jewish mom is a little trite and overdone, but there are there are things I really do appreciate about this film. It’s nice to see a film commentate on commitment issues within the lesbian community and not of the normal sexy young hollywood “lesbian” variety. What can I say? I always appreciate truthful casting in a film. Perhaps some of the best moments in the film, are the intimate flashbacks of Elsie and Robyn when they were truly in love. These moments are mundane yet tender.
So in the end, “The Portrait of a Serial Monogamist” is a charming indie comedy. It’s light hearted and fun and brings up the point that you can’t be open to love without being open to heartbreak.
Starring: Diane Flacks, Carolyn Taylor, Vanessa Dunn, Robin Duke, Gavin Crawford, Sabrina Jalees, Elvira Kurt
PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL MONOGAMIST debuts Feb 9, 2016 across all digital platforms including iTunes, Vimeo On Demand, and WolfeOnDemand.com, and will also be available same date on DVD via Wolfe Video and many major retailers.