Lizziehead (dir. M W Daniels)

By: Adam Freed

From the minds of creative intellects come a multitude of new ways in which to interpret the world.  This is certainly the case for Lizziehead, the comedic short film from gifted London based writer and director M W Daniels. Lizziehead is a raunchy comedy dripping in the insecurities of a single woman’s quest to find the father who abandoned her in her youth.  Lizzie (Charlotte Gould) presses her estranged mother desperately for connection to the man who clearly impacted her emotionally wandering ways.  Lizzie seeks male attention and affirmation transparently filling the void left by her father’s departure.  The British short weaponizes a form of sexualized humor, which in most instances lands with impact.  Daniels overlooks the inherent risks of alienating audiences with more conservative comedic taste, to deliver a memorable and chaotic character study.  The end result is the creation of Lizzie Barnett, a refreshingly open and dynamic character, equal parts self aware and self destructive.  

Although many of the characters circling Lizzie’s orbit play a bit one note, this isn’t uncommon for short form storytelling, as dynamism works in opposition to a runtime shy of forty minutes.  Lizzie’s quest to locate her father feels increasingly important as her life seems to become more chaotic.  Lizzie gives the impression that although reconnecting with her father may not solve all of her shortcomings, it would certainly provide her life with the bedrock on which she could begin to build a stable existence.  Proving that nothing in Lizzie’s life is moored to safety, even her relationship with her best friend Penny lacks the wholesomeness of platonic care without strings attached.  

Ultimately Lizziehead is a distinctly modern comedy for an open minded adult audience.  M W Daniels’  film speaks to the important stabilizing force that fathers play within the family dynamic.  Lizzie’s existence is brought to life by the commendable performance of Charlotte Gould, who gives the impression that this may be a decisive moment in her career as her future in the comedic realm seems to be a foregone conclusion.   

Target Score 6.5/10 - Writer and director M W Daniels ratchets up the adult oriented comedy in his over-the-top short film.  Lizziehead follows the wandering path that Lizzie Barnett weaves in search of her long absent father.  The chaotic behaviors she exhibits are notably captured in the compelling performance of Charlotte Gould.