Film Review – TUESDAY (2023): Director Daina Oniunas-Pusic’s Film is a Unique Fantasy Showcasing Julia Louis-Dreyfus’s Remarkable Talents SuperNayr

Julia Louis Dreyfus Tuesday

Tuesday Review

Tuesday (2023) Film Review, a movie written and directed by Daina Oniunas-Pusic and starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Lola Petticrew, Arinzé Kene, Leah Harvey, Ellie James, Taru Devani, Jay Simpson, David Sibley, Nathan Amzi, Justin Edwards, Hugh Futcher, Nathan Ives-Moiba and Ewens Abid.

Tuesday is one of the most intensely challenging and ambitious movies of the past decade. It’s not a mainstream film by any stretch of the imagination but that’s what’s so intriguing about it. Julia Louis-Dreyfus stars in the lead role which is a far cry from almost all of her previous parts. Writer/director Daina Oniunas-Pusic turns Tuesday into a film experience like no other. While not every creative choice works out perfectly, there is a great deal of thought that went into crafting Tuesday and it shows on-screen, especially through Louis-Dreyfus’s dedicated and sincere performance.

Louis-Dreyfus plays a mom named Zora who tells people her teenage daughter, Tuesday (Lola Petticrew) is just like ordinary girls but, in reality, she’s not. Tuesday is suffering from an illness and doesn’t have a long time to live. Leah Harvey (in a fine turn) portrays Nurse Billie who tends to Tuesday’s needs and deals with Zora’s idiosyncrasies. But, soon, there is a major problem here: Death (Arinzé Kene) has arrived in the form of an over-sized parrot with a very distinct and creepy voice which dictates when a person’s end is here or when it is approaching. This parrot is an original cinematic creation like no other. It gets bigger when it wants to and shrinks as well. It’s a frightening animal incarnation of death. Zora becomes a key player in trying to reverse Death’s intentions of taking her daughter away from her and therein lies the complexity of the film’s very delicate story line.

This film has an odd choice of a soundtrack with rap music such as that from Ice Cube playing in the background at given intervals. Using this music is a decision that could work against the film for mainstream audiences but there is a certain level of reasoning why these songs are included. They serve to give Death his rough edge. Death comes to visit Zora to see how she’s doing towards the end of the picture after some sad events transpire but as sensitive as Death becomes through the course of the movie, he is what he is: “The end” and the songs sort of remind the viewer of the vulgarity that is death.

Zora challenges the authority of Death in the film. She even gets to shrink or grow bigger as the film’s plot line demands her to. She swallows Death (the parrot, who is shrunken) at one or two points in the movie as well. There are scenes where Zora proves she can fight against fate and try to save her daughter from an ugly predicament. As the daughter, Petticrew gives Tuesday a wholesome and innocent vibe initially but there is also a lot of complexity underneath her soft exterior. Petticrew’s performance is delicate and quite admirable throughout the entirety of the movie. Petticrew and Louis-Dreyfus have a believable rapport together.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus’s work here shows her tremendous range as an actress. She plays Zora with passionate energy although there is a lot of sorrow that Zora experiences. It’s not just the potential passing of her daughter but, also, the constant beating up that life does to her which regularly knocks her down. Zora tries to find happiness but discovers, within herself, that her real happiness, her real reason for living, is Tuesday, her daughter.

Tuesday definitively answers the questions the viewers watching the film may have regarding whether or not there is a God in the afterlife that the new film proposes to the audience. And, yet, at the same time, the film paints a very positive picture of the purpose of life and how nobody truly dies. Living on through our family or loved ones is a theme that makes a lot of sense and that idea in the film is very well-conceived on-screen.

I’m not going to even try to sugarcoat Tuesday. This is a tough film to sit through for many reasons. Death is truly disturbing as a character. The parrot is ugly to look at and listen to while the things that happen to the other people facing the end of their lives in the movie can become quite ugly to watch as well. But, those difficult scenes coincide with some very moving sequences which are acted to perfection. Louis-Dreyfus has created a genuine character who is neither overly nice nor cruel. She’s only human and at the core of Louis-Dreyfus’s performance is that dramatic energy she brings to the character. Zora would do anything to change fate, especially the fate of her daughter, but the movie teaches us that outwitting death may be an impossible task. As 1998’s Meet Joe Black taught us, death will come for everyone.

While Tuesday is proficiently made and extraordinarily acted by Louis-Dreyfus, it won’t be everybody’s ticket. Daina Oniunas-Pusic is to be credited for bringing to life one of the most daring and ambitious films of late. Everything is not wrapped up neatly in a bow for audiences to digest at the conclusion of Tuesday. Life is what we make of it and we carry on those unique qualities of our loved ones even after they pass. The love between a parent and child can certainly be everlasting and that theme is expertly on-display in the deeply profound film, Tuesday. This is Julia Louis-Dreyfus at her best.

Rating: 8/10

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