Searching for Debra Winger

Director: Rosanna Arquette

While others can easily and with validity, dismiss a conversational documentary film with a credit “Experienced by Rosanna Arquette” as self-indulgent or pretentious, they’re missing the larger issue. Aging mother Arquette began to see the perils of Hollywood workload and the trials and tribulations of motherhood in show business as she raised her daughter—however as she began growing older, roles began getting more and more scarce as she witnessed other, younger women subject themselves to painful and degrading plastic surgery in order to remain vital in Tinsletown. Arquete sets out interviewing other actresses ranging from Teri Garr and Martha Plimpton to Holly Hunter and Sharon Stone in order to get views from women in the industry—from those with successful careers, those struggling, women with children, those in relationships, and some with neither. Note: It's especially poignant and timely to see recently, sadly deceased actress Adrienne Shelly share her views.

Arquette uncovers hypocrisies and double standards and some critics (mostly male) have simply written off the film, which first aired on Showtime, as a “bitchfest” but there are some priceless moments—including candid interviews with Whoopi Goldberg who shares that she wouldn’t give up her stardom, Jane Fonda who did for marriage to Ted Turner, and lastly, she manages to track down Oscar favorite and box office star Debra Winger who walked away from it all when she was at the height of her fame. A bit overly long and way too whiny at times—some commentary is much more valid than others but Arquette is a likable tour guide and the general goal is admirable indeed.