Lena Dunham‘s Girls premieres tonight on HBO. The Judd Apatow-produced show gives a weekly forum to Dunham, a New York writer/filmmaker (born to artist parents – more on that later) whose previous work includes YouTube videos and two self-financed films, her first full-length effort Creative Nonfiction and 2010′s Tiny Furniture.
Both are included, along with the filmmaker’s early YouTube efforts, on a recent Critierion edition of Tiny Furniture. I rented it this weekend to get a taste of Dunham’s style prior to the premiere of the much-hyped show. Naturally, given the young filmmaker’s pedigree, I hoped not to like it.
Unfortunately, I quite enjoyed Tiny Furniture, which is basically a slice-of-life film about a Dunham-like character in New York City figuring out what to do with herself post-university (see also Baumbach, Noah: Kicking and Screaming, as well as all films by Whit Stillman and Hal Hartley).
Dunham may be the privileged and entitled offspring of two successful New York artists, and therefore without the right to be talented and successful as well (to my benighted way of thinking). However there’s no denying she is a fine writer with a keen ear for dialogue, a wise sense of irony and a flair for real-seeming situations. And though the story may not be original, her way of telling it is certainly unique and funny.
From early reviews, Girls is going to be just as good, if not better, and I’m looking forward to it. Fittingly, the first episode follows a new chapter of Eastbound and Down, the gleefully male-ego-ripping Danny McBride show.