TIFF 2011 Violet Daisy

Director and writer Geoffery Fletcher returns to Toronto with his directorial debut just a few years after making his first big splash at the festival with his screenplay for Precious. Violet Daisy a genre bending take on the hit (wo)man film will easily solidify him as one of the most talent filmmakers working today.

Violet and Daisy played by Alexis Bledel and Saoirse Ronan are assassins for hire and right off the top we see just how deadly these two are. They may be working in a field and at a level that is beyond their years, but they are just as immature as two young women should be. They are obsessed with music and fashion, in fact the begrudgingly take on this new job just so they can buy a dress designed by their favourite singer. Their intended target (James Gandolfini) was supposed to be a walk in park, a quick in-and-out but it proves to be nothing of the sort. Goldolfini’s character, who is never given a name, lures Violet and Daisy into his life and in turn force the duo to start questioning themselves and each other.

Violet Daisy is no ordinary shoot’em up film, first of all there is a surprising lack of shooting and most of the action takes place in a small barely furnished apartment. Films have been made about assassins from just about every angle; from the killer with the heart of gold and even the teenage assassins angle isnt necessarily new. What makes the film refreshing is the balance that Fletcher strikes between the often all too common tropes of the genre. The film is funny and light hearted with the occasional gun battle. Although we are not openly learn too much about the characters with subtlety in both the writing and acting we are given hints to full and often unhappy lives these characters have lived. A talented cast doesn’t hurt either with Gololfini playing against type as the soft spoken victim and Saorise Ronan proves yet again why she is one of the most exciting actresses working today of any age.

Violet Daisy (2011)
Written and Directed by: Geoffery Fletcher
Starring: Alexis Bledel, Saoirse Ronan and James Gandolfini
Produced by: Geoffery Fletcher, John Penotti and Bonnie Timmermann