Sometime in the 1970s, 15-year-old loner Agnes Marie "Mooney" Pottie dreams of escaping existence in New Waterford, a coastal Nova Scotia town on Cape Breton Island. She quietly scorns most of the people around her, including her large family, who don't share her sensibilities; her fiercely-Catholic family think she's weird. She thinks she's realized her dream when, with the help of her teacher Cecil Sweeney (who came to New Waterford to find himself and is still looking) she wins a scholarship to a New York art school. When her parents don't let her go, she devises a plan to escape New Waterford. Meanwhile, a bit of NYC comes to New Waterford when Lou Benzoa and her dance-instructor mother temporarily move in next door to the Potties to escape the Bronx until "the stink dies down." Lou becomes friends with Mooney and quickly gains a reputation as the female Equalizer, whose powers only work on the guilty.Written by
When writer Tricia Fish moved to New Waterford at age 13 with her family, her six-year-old brother ran into their kitchen one day all bloody, and happily said, "I made a friend!" She incorporated this into the movie, in an identical scene with the character of Darcy, Lou's little brother. See more »
On the DVD edition that has subtitles, the subtitles get some lyrics wrong in the opening credits song. When the singer sings the words "Draggin' the line", the subtitles read "Livin' a lie". It's especially a strange goof since "Draggin' the Line" is actually the name of the song. See more »
I wasn't really born here, you know. When I was a tiny infant, my real mother, a famous opera singer, dropped me from a silver jet as she passed over what she saw as a beautiful tropical coastline. God's country.
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(Isn't Love Unkind) In My Life
Performed by A Foot In Cold Water
Written by Paul Naumann and Danny Taylor
Published by Freewheeled Music/MCA Music Canada
Administered for the World by Freewheeled Music
Courtesy of Unidisc Music Inc. See more »
Allan Moyle, the director of "New Waterford Girl" captures the right atmosphere of a small town in Nova Scotia. He shows us how the people live in this isolated area. The life of the small village, with all its local characters, is presented by Mr. Moyle in a way that affects us into feeling for these people in that barren place.
The best thing going for this movie is the brilliant performance by Liane Balaban. She plays Moonie Pottie, a girl that wants to break away from the boredom of the town and go away to pursue her ambition. This young actress' face registers a lot of emotions going on inside Moonie's mind. She knows the only chance for her to get out of the mediocrity in which she lives is to become pregnant because invariably, those fallen girls are sent away to have their children.
Luckily for Moonie, she finds a friend in Lou, the rebel American teen ager who arrives from the Bronx to hide away with her mother and young brother. This is the only part that doesn't make much sense, but it's a diversion to the story that otherwise would be too confined to just the locals. Lou gives Moonie a confidence that the latter one didn't know she had. Moonie grows up helped by her friendship with the tomboyish Lou, who is too wise for her young age. Tara Spencer-Nairn does a wonderful job in recreating Lou Benzoa.
The film takes a while to click with the viewer, but it will stay in his mind for days after having seen it. The Pottie family is presided by Francis and Cookie. As played by Nicholas Campbell and the always excellent Mary Walsh, this family shows an inner strength, even at times of great crisis.
Andrew McCarthy is also seen briefly as the teacher that wants a better life for Moonie, who inspires her to break away from this small town. Cathy Moriarty plays, yet another, boxer's wife. She has nothing to do in the film.
This small movie will charm those willing to take a trip guided by the sure direction of Allan Moyle.
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