A woman suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder (Kristen Wiig) becomes an overnight celebrity after a huge lottery jackpot allows her to launch her own off-the-wall talk show.

Special Presentations

Welcome to Me

Shira Piven

In Welcome to Me, director Shira Piven explores what happens when a commonly held fantasy comes true for a complicated person, and a story of good luck evolves into a compelling and darkly humorous drama.

Alice Klieg (Kristen Wiig) suffers from borderline personality disorder, and though she manages it — and the accompanying medications and therapeutic care — fairly well, past tumult has left a broken marriage and strained familial relationships in its wake. She finds grounding in her daily routine, which includes memorizing every episode of Oprah and carefully monitoring her wardrobe and protein-laden diet. One can't help but get the sense that Alice is straining to embrace bigger things, and when her numbers come up in the state lottery, suddenly she gets focused… on eighty million dollars' worth of possibilities.

In quick succession, Alice buys a stretch of hours at a local television company, eschews her medication and therapy, moves into a casino, and creates her own talk show about — what else? — herself. As her show gains an audience (despite some off-the-wall cooking and medical demonstrations), Alice realizes that viewers identify with her re-enactments of past hurts and social slights. What she doesn't recognize is that her own hunger for fame may just reflect a deeper need to be heard.

On its surface, Welcome to Me is a parable about how wish fulfillment doesn't always lead to happiness, but screenwriter Eliot Laurence has also layered in perceptive observations about the hollowness of fame and our current culture of confession. Despite Alice's outer volatility, Wiig centres her with a delicate inner stillness, keeping the viewer engaged with her every move. Buying a lottery ticket will never seem simple again.

JANE SCHOETTLE

Screenings

Fri Sep 05

Princess of Wales

Regular
2:45pm
Sat Sep 06

Scotiabank 3

Industry
9:00am
Sat Sep 06

Scotiabank 12

Regular
6:00pm
Wed Sep 10

Scotiabank 13

Industry
11:30am
Sat Sep 13

The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema

Regular
6:00pm