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Set in a small town in rural Australia in the 1950s, The Dressmaker is a delicious tale of revenge with a large dose of heart and high fashion. Tilly (Kate Winslet) returns to her hometown after becoming a famous clothing designer in England to care for her ailing and mentally unstable mother, Molly (Judy Davis). The most thrilling part of the story focuses on Tilly as she discovers her power by using her sewing machine as a weapon to right the wrongs that happened to her when she was just a girl. Tilly is a survivor who relies on her creativity to make it through the tough times.

Winslet is at her best and the costumes are simply gorgeous. Shot in the style of a Spaghetti Western in rural Australia, this is one of the best films of 2016. Beyond the superficial sets and costumes, this is a love story between a mother and daughter that will bring tears to your eyes.

Score breakdown:

  1. Two very complicated female protagonists, both are wonderfully written and acted: 20 pts.
  2. Tells the story of two women: 20 pts.
  3. The film is directed by Jocelyn Moorhouse, who also co-wrote the script based on the book by Rosalie Ham: 20 pts.
  4. Quality of filmmaking: 20 pts.
  5. Passes the Bechdel/Wallace test: 20 pts.

About Shanee Edwards

Shanee Edwards is a film critic, entertainment journalist and screenwriter.

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