Gas Food Lodging (1992)
Written by Richard Peck (novel) and Allison Anders (screenplay)
Directed by Allison Anders
Friday, March 25, 2016
Egyptian Theater, Hollywood, California
Event by Seeking Our Story
Last Friday night I had the luck and privilege to attend a 35MM showing of one of my all-time favorite films, Gas Food Lodging at the Egyptian Theater, in Hollywood. The night included a Q&A with writer/director and all around amazing woman, Allison Anders, two cast members, the fabulous siblings Ione Skye and Donovan Leitch Jr., and producer Carl Colpaert.
Before the main event Seeking Our Story hosted a networking Q&A, meaning that everyone in the small theater was encouraged to speak about what projects they are working on,what help they could use, and what help they could offer. I didn’t expect this to happen, and at first I was terribly overwhelmed, and felt my insecurities bubble up to say to me – you have nothing to say – but I did. I mentioned that I am working on a novel, and I mentioned this space – lyriquediscorde – and I had people interested in both things. I felt a part of something and proud of being a writer. It was one of those moments, a moment I’ve had a few times lately, where I feel part of a writing community. Its a great feeling.
Seeking Our Story launched on April 25, 2014. They are an amazing group in Los Angeles that screen influential films directed by women. Their group of filmmakers and film enthusiasts seek education and inspiration through viewing and discussing films made by women.
They currently present one film a month, each highlighting a different women director and exemplifying their influence on film history.
This month’s even was Gas Food Lodging.
It is an all-time favorite of mine, and is a movie I have seen multiple times (thought it had been awhile). The movie hit me in such a different way than the last times I’ve watched it. It had been awhile since I’d seen it, so long that there were details and scenes I’d forgotten about, including the ending.
I forgot that the ending broke my heart, even though it had an element of hope in the sadness in regards to life, and love.
I saw myself so much in Fairuza Balk’s character, even though she is so young in it, Shade being sixteen and so naive. I saw the me at that age, and the way I felt (and over-felt) things, the kind of boy I fell for (at least the first one), and how wistful I once was to know my estranged father.
I saw myself, too, in Brooke Adams’ character, Slade and Trudi’s mother, but not as much as I’d expected to. There were parts of who she was I just couldn’t wrap my head around, in some of the ways she reacted to her daughters, especially how she was with Trudi – I just couldn’t stand it. But, in her alone times, and in her dealings with one of the men in her life, I very much related.
Allison was incredible to hear speak, and to meet. I especially enjoyed and appreciated her speaking on her writing process, and how certain details, like the glowing rocks, made it into the story, and screenplay. We all insert parts of our life and life experience into what we write, no matter what the genre – I think all writers know that to a point. But, its nice to see another writer acknowledge it.
The desert has always had a special place in my heart, and has woven itself into some of my storytelling. So, for me, Gas Food Lodging is one of my muses, one of my inspirations.
Thank you, Seeking Our Story, Allison Anders, Ione Skye, Donovan Leitch, Carl Colpaert and Fairuza Balk (who I wish had been there) for such a wonderful film and event.