It Chooses You

Miranda July

It Chooses You

In the summer of 2009, Miranda July was struggling to finish writing the screenplay for her much-anticipated second film. During her increasingly long lunch breaks, she began to obsessively read the PennySaver, the iconic clas sifieds booklet that reached everywhere and seemed to come from nowhere. Who was the person selling the "Large leather Jacket,, $10"? It seemed important to find out - or at least it was a great distraction from the screenplay. Accompanied by photographer Brigitte Sire, July crisscrossed Los Angeles to meet a random selection of PennySaver sellers, glimpsing thirteen surprisingly moving and profoundly specific realities, along the way shaping her film, and herself, in unexpected ways. 2.5 out of 5 based on 3 reviews
It Chooses You

Omniscore:

Classification Non-fiction
Genre Essays, Journals & Letters
Format Hardback
Pages 224
RRP £16.99
Date of Publication December 2011
ISBN 978-0857862549
Publisher Canongate
 

In the summer of 2009, Miranda July was struggling to finish writing the screenplay for her much-anticipated second film. During her increasingly long lunch breaks, she began to obsessively read the PennySaver, the iconic clas sifieds booklet that reached everywhere and seemed to come from nowhere. Who was the person selling the "Large leather Jacket,, $10"? It seemed important to find out - or at least it was a great distraction from the screenplay. Accompanied by photographer Brigitte Sire, July crisscrossed Los Angeles to meet a random selection of PennySaver sellers, glimpsing thirteen surprisingly moving and profoundly specific realities, along the way shaping her film, and herself, in unexpected ways.

Reviews

The Observer

Hermione Hoby

What appears to be the opposite of a self-absorbed endeavour — what could be more radically naive and outward-looking than interviewing perfect strangers in their own homes? — in fact turns out to be strangely solipsistic. "All I ever really want to know is how other people are making it through life," July writes. The beauty of It Chooses You is that in trying to answer that question for herself, about other people, she answers it for us, about herself.

08/01/2012

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The Independent on Sunday

Nick Garrard

The final chapter, detailing July's relationship with Joe, an elderly seller and prolific writer of rude limericks, is a particularly touching highlight … This is a brief read and, while there is something of the coffee table tome about its appearance and much air between the words, it nonetheless leaves a lasting impression.

08/01/2012

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The Financial Times

Lionel Shriver

If It Chooses You hadn’t been written by the trendy filmmaker Miranda July, would it have been published? The short answer is no … I’m not so po-faced as to object to July using and to a degree ridiculing her PennySaver sellers. Writers “use” people routinely and we are all each others’ material. Besides, every subject was a willing participant. But the presentation of characters-as-found-art is superficial. Oddball facts stand in for revelation.

07/01/2012

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