2014 NoBudge Award winner Jeremy Hersh (Best Screenplay, “Natives”) returns with another story of women in love confronting their maybe-irreconcilable differences. Where that earlier film expanded to embrace ideas about place, culture, and identity, what we get here is a marvel of concentration. Hersh clears away the inessential and crystallizes a love affair’s rise and fall and tentative renewal into a chamber piece, a poignant duet that comes and goes before it’s time for a second cigarette. Sarah, a young stage actress, waylays her idol Danielle and confesses her admiration. We follow their courtship through bedrooms, barrooms, back-alleys and backstage visits. All the while the younger actress’ diligent self-involvement grinds away at her older lover’s patient exterior. Unyieldingly intimate, un-sentimental but never stark, “Actresses” is a jewel-like double portrait of two women divided by a few years and a wide gulf of sensibility.
Written and Directed by Jeremy Hersh. Featuring Rebecca Henderson and Taylor Hess. Produced by Natasha Giliberti.