In a recurring poetic image, 17-year-old Regina Diane Nicholson swings between heaven and earth on a breathtakingly high cliff by the sea. Reggie is a tomboy struggling with terminal illness, her parents and her dream of making a film. She impresses us with her loving, strong personality and wisdom beyond her years, as well as her morbid sense of humor. When director Henry Corra met 17-year-old filmmaker Regina Nicholson at a film festival, he agreed to help her make a feature film. What developed over nearly two years is a powerful friendship and poignant relationship between Reggie and Henry. He became her collaborator, friend and defender in her fight to find artistic and personal freedom. When Reggie turns 18 and can make decisions on her own, things become even more intense. This film is a poetic fairytale about love and death, holding on and letting go, one that invites us to discuss the relationship between filmmaker, subject and family. An eclectic mix of images with the intimacy of a video diary or home movie, it is filmed both by Henry and by Reggie and supplemented by their text message exchanges, images from her favorite movies, and fairytale-like scenes with songs that together form a heartwarming, but also heartbreaking and controversial ode to Reggie’s life. Co-director Henry Corra joins us for a conversation on love, death, relationships and the impact co-director Reggie has had on him.
“MOVING. IMPRESSIONISTIC. UNSETTLING. Watching it feels like judging a last will and testament.” – Ben Kenigsberg, New York Times
“If the only film about a teenage girl with cancer you’ve seen recently is The Fault in Our Stars, get ready for a new and stranger heartbreak…Pitched like a home movie but crafted with fine, poignant sensibilities.” – Diana Clarke, Village Voice, February 24, 2015
“An ode to life, loss and moviemaking…a powerful…gripping story.” – Zack Sharf, IndieWire
“Searingly brave and beautiful.” – Pamela Cohn, Filmmaker Magazine
“Relentlessly compelling. How can you remain unmoved by the wretched unfairness of a likeable young person dying and handling it with such grace? Packs an emotional sucker punch.” – Simi Horwitz, Film Journal
“A provocation from beyond the grave. A remarkable narrative [with] passionate energy.” – Eric Kohn, IndieWire