Movie Review: “My Name Is Emily”, Starring Evanna Lynch

 

Film written and directed by Simon Fitzmaurice

 

My Name Is Emily is an intimate movie, pulling you close from the start. This independent Irish film has a small but stellar cast, poetic storytelling, poignant music, and beautifully framed shots that draw you into the lives of these somewhat broken, but hopeful, individuals.

Evanna Lynch is quietly powerful as Emily, giving us a character that is seemingly fragile but with a spirit that is not so easily crushed. Newcomer George Webster has just the right balance of warmth, charm, and empathy as Arden, making it easy to believe that his heart is in the right place and that he just wants to help. Michael Smiley, as Emily’s father, gives a wonderful performance as a man besieged by tragedy and mental illness, who is struggling to reconnect, both with his daughter and himself.

Emily has dealt with a lot in her 16 years. After two years of moving from one relative, foster home, and school to the next, she finds herself once again the “weird” outsider, a label she no longer fights. She is herself and accepts that no one understands her. One boy at her new school, Arden, appreciates her uniqueness and tries to get to know her, with rather limited success. She only trusts one thing in her life, the regular letters from her father. When they suddenly stop, she is desperate to find out why. So with Arden’s help, she sets off to find him.

Premiering at the Galway Film Fleadh in 2015, My Name Is Emily went on to be included in the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival the same year. It was released in Ireland in 2016 and garnered eight nominations at the Irish Film & Television Awards, including Best Film, Film Script, and Actress in a Lead Role.

My Name Is Emily will be released in New York and Los Angeles on February 17 and on Video on Demand on February 24.