Molly Longwell ’11 to Film New Movie “Bad Mother” in Thetford
February 15, 2022
Photo of “Baby Bites” production provided by Molly Longwell.
After graduating from TA in 2011, Molly Longwell was excited to “bust out of Vermont” and dive headlong into urban life. She attended American University in the heart of D.C. before heading to Boston and, in 2017, finding her home in NYC. This spring, Molly will return to Thetford to produce her second short film “Bad Mother” (the first was “Baby Bites,” written by Molly and directed by Nabil Elbehri in 2019), a story that features the small town life and vast Vermont landscapes she left behind.
“Bad Mother” is, on its face, a story about infidelity. Mother’s character has learned that her husband is cheating, leaving her angry, resentful, and questioning everything. The timing of this reveal could not be worse–a close family friend has died and the couple’s grown children are coming home for the memorial. Over the course of the next 24 hours, the film focuses on Mother’s hurt and rage, an inner turmoil she tries to hide from her children.
The film’s setting in Thetford juxtaposes Vermont’s vistas with Mother’s feelings of claustrophobia in her close-knit community. Its wide open spaces help tell the story of isolation, of feeling small. An outsider who moved to her husband’s hometown to marry and raise children, Mother struggles to see where she fits into Vermont now. Before she was “Mother,” she was a performer, singer and actress–in another place and another time.
Though not autobiographical, Molly shared that her experiences growing up in Vermont helped her develop Mother’s story. Her experiences in TA’s drama program–”I was in every musical theater production except ‘Pirates of Penzance’”– inspired an interest in acting and storytelling. Until she arrived in NYC, though, she never thought about creating her own show, “The idea of being a leader behind a show or a film never hit me. I never thought it was possible until I came to New York.”
Molly plans to be back in Thetford to shoot “Bad Mother” over Memorial Day weekend. There will be opportunities for the community to get involved and support the film, Molly shared–every meal, every ride back and forth from a location, every person willing to put up a crew member in their home will help make the film possible. “What will make Bad Mother great,” Molly says, “will be having it be a community effort.” If you want to be in the movie, extras are needed, too!