Laura Dern In “The Tale”

Jennifer Fox's Autobiographical HBO Film

BY: Zak Wojnar

Laura Dern has never fallen out of the spotlight, but the beautiful and talented actor is having a particularly strong career resurgence lately. She recently won her first Emmy award for her role on Big Little Lies; the universally-acclaimed drama is her second high-profile HBO Original Series, after the criminally underrated Enlightened, which ran for two seasons starting in 2011.  On the big screen, she was a supreme badass in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, in which she acted opposite Carrie Fisher and Oscar Isaac and exuded a strong aura of military authority, all while wearing a flowing gown and gorgeous locks of bright purple hair.

The versatile Dern’s latest project is also one of the most buzzed-about films of the year. The Tale is an HBO Original Film about the real life childhood of writer/director Jennifer Fox, who discovers that the reality of her first sexual experience does not line up with her memories of the encounter. After re-reading a paper she wrote in school, Fox comes to the shocking realization that she was a victim of sexual abuse. The all-star cast includes Jason Ritter, Elizabeth Debicki, Ellen Burstyn, Common, and the late John Heard, in one of his final roles.

The Tale is an examination of childhood trauma, growing up, and turning around to face your past. Based on the trailer, it’s not going to be an easy watch, but HBO specializes in movies and shows about adult topics. For all the bluster around crowd-pleasing, ultra-violent fantasy like Game of Thrones and Westworld – both of which are critically acclaimed in their own right – it’s easy to forget that HBO is also the network behind more grounded dramas like The Deuce, True Detective, and the aforementioned Enlightened, to say nothing of incredible movies like Phil Spector, Temple Grandin, and the recently-released Paterno.

The Tale airs May 26 on HBO.


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