A resplendent Brit Marling appeared as the lights went up - along with director MIke Cahill - following the premier DC screening of her new film, Another Earth. The two are graduates of Georgetown University and told the packed neighborhood audience that it was a pleasure to be back home with such a great project. The film, which opens Friday in Washington, is about the discovery a parallel Earth with all the same people, and a tragic accident between Marling's character and the family of an architect. Cahill and Marling wrote the script and ask questions like, "Can you undo your mistakes?" Is true love contrived if the path to is disguised? "We started with the idea of what it would be like to meet yourself," Starling said. "And then tried to work backwards."
I've heard several writers talk about a similar process, foremost John Irving who told a mesmerized crowd a few years ago, also at Georgetown, about working backwards for his novels "A Son of the Circus" and "A Prayer for Owen Meany." Cahill complimented Marling for her work, saying how much of the film is just shots of her face. Cahill tells a good story in the film. The sci-fi aspects are low-budget but convey the ideas they are looking for. The ending feels right and not contrived - no doubt evidence that they had this ending first. I recommend the film and Marling, who got written up yesterday in the Washington Post and just may be the new It Girl. As a writer, she may stay around for a while.