2018 - USA - English - 84 MINUTES
A FILM BY MADELEINE OLNEK
FEATURING: MOLLY SHANNON, AMY SEIMETZ, SUSAN ZIEGLER, BRETT GELMAN
In the mid-19th century, Emily Dickinson is writing prolifically, baking gingerbread, and enjoying a passionate, lifelong romantic relationship with another woman, her friend and sister-in-law Susan...yes this is the iconic American poet, popularly thought to have been a recluse.
Beloved comic Molly Shannon leads in this humorous yet bold reappraisal of Dickinson, informed by her private letters.
While seeking publication of some of the 1,775 poems written during her lifetime, Emily (Shannon) finds herself facing a troupe of male literary gatekeepers too confused by her genius to take her work seriously.
Instead her work attracts the attention of an ambitious woman editor, who also sees Emily as a convenient cover for her own role in buttoned-up Amherst's most bizarre love triangle.
A timely critique of how women's history is rewritten, Wild Nights With Emily remains vibrant, irreverent and tender--a perhaps closer depiction of Emily Dickinson's real life than anything seen before.
★★★★ “Wild Nights With Emily looks at poet Emily Dickinson’s lesbian life - Madeleine Olnek directs a superb Molly Shannon in a funny and touching film that’s anything but a stuffy biopic” - NOW
"Wild Nights With Emily gives us a lighter, lustier Emily Dickinson" / "Molly Shannon of Saturday Night Live fame is brilliantly cast, adding a comedic edge to her portrayal of the American poet by director Madeleine Olnek" - Toronto Star
“Wild Nights With Emily, which succeeds in upending the conventional image of poet Emily Dickinson—now deemed as influential as Walt Whitman was in his time—as a dour spinster who got no pleasure out of life.” - Georgia Straight
“Shannon lowers the registers on her comic rawness to deliver a warm, funny, engaging, even sprightly performance as poet Emily Dickinson.” - That’s What She Said
“a cheeky, playful period piece comedy with a serious desire to change perceptions about one of the most misunderstood and misinterpreted poets in literary history.” / Wild Nights with Emily is assuredly some of the most fun one can have being educated and enlightened this year.” - The Gate
”the movie gets under your skin – and quite often, stabs your heart. Shannon, who has a great face and a criminally underused talent, gives it all she’s got. You’ll be Googling the Dickinson canon and rethinking all your literature courses the minute it ends.” - Globe & Mail
”WILD NIGHTS WITH EMILY is a historical comedy, but it’s far from a spoof. It’s a meticulously reworked view of Emily Dickerson. It restores her same-sex relationship that had previously been expunged and erased – literally – from her original manuscripts.” - Garber at the Movies (Audio Review)
”Shannon and Ziegler’s show, and both play off each other perfectly and with tenderness. Olnek proves why queer filmmakers should be telling queer stories, as she not only achieves what the film sets out to do but also manages to write the best dialogue in any film so far this year.” - Daze
”It took a woman writer-director, working with a woman historian, Martha Nell Smith, to tell the true story. “Dickinson was a queer hero,” Shannon said in a phone interview, “a rebel, a trailblazer, a hungry, aggressive poet, fighting her times.” - Globe and Mail
”It’s superbly acted, well-written, and beautifully shot. Olnek has succeeded in shattering the “lily white” image of Emily Dickinson and creating an authentic portrait of the true Emily Dickinson. If you are a fan of period pieces, you’ll love Wild Nights with Emily. If you are a fan of Molly Shannon, you’ll love her in her brilliant performance of the poet. If you are a fan of the poet Emily Dickinson, you’ll love the film for its authentic re-telling of her life. Do see it for you won’t be disappointed.” - The Extra Mile
“Revisionist history played to the hilt. This devilishly funny film from writer/director Madeline Olnek is a must-see for any bookworm or nerd for literary history” - Cinemablographer
”Wild Nights with Emily was written and directed by Madeleine Olnek, whose first feature, 2011’s Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same, gives you a sense of her sexual politics. She has cleverly sprinkled her tale with readings of Dickinson’s work by the poet and others, often serious but straying into whimsy as well.” - The Province / National Post
“performances by Shannon and Ziegler are heartwarming and endearing and overall it is a sweet story of one of America’s well known poets.” - iHeart Radio