All Over Me (film): Wikis


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All Over Me

Movie poster
Directed by Alex Sichel
Produced by Dolly Hall
Written by Sylvia Sichel
Starring Alison Folland
Tara Subkoff
Music by Leisha Hailey
Miki Navazio
Cinematography Joe DeSalvo
Editing by Sabine Hoffmann
Distributed by Alliance
Fine Line Features
Release date(s) February 1997 (Berlin Film Festival)
April 25, 1997 (USA)
February 19, 1998 (Australia)
Running time 90 mins.
Country United States
Language English
Gross revenue $150,646 (USA sub-total)

All Over Me is a 1997 drama film directed by Alex Sichel and written by sister Sylvia Sichel. Alex Sichel received a grant from the Princess Grace Foundation to make a film about the riot grrrl music scene and then asked her sister to collaborate with her.[1]

The soundtrack featured musicians and bands such as Ani DiFranco, Sleater-Kinney, Babes in Toyland and many more.

The film has been compared to Kids and came out during a wave of girl-centered films such as Welcome to the Dollhouse, Girls Town and Foxfire.



Claude (Alison Folland) and Ellen (Tara Subkoff) are fifteen-year-old best friends living in Hell's Kitchen, New York City. It is the beginning of the summer vacation and they have plans to start a band together. Ellen wants Claude to come with her to spend time with Mark (Cole Hauser), Ellen's new boyfriend, but Claude refuses. Later that night, Ellen comes back from her date and wakes up Claude, telling her that she has slept with Mark. Claude asks her to "show her" what they did, and Ellen begins to kiss her but soon stops abruptly.

The girls had previously met Luke (Pat Briggs), a gay musician who has just moved into Claude's apartment building. She expresses her doubts to him about her and Ellen starting a band now that Ellen is seeing Mark. Luke tells Claude about a club where a lot of girl bands play, saying that perhaps she could meet someone there who wants to start a band.

Claude works at a pizzeria with Jesse (Wilson Cruz), a young homosexual man who is also getting to know Luke. Ellen, Mark and Mark's friends come to the pizzeria to eat. Luke comes in soon after and chats to Claude, though Ellen ignores him. He talks to Jesse and says that he is there for him if he ever needs advice. Later, Mark starts verbally abusing Luke, spitting at him and using homophobic language. Ellen, Mark and his friends leave.

The next day, there are police outside Claude's apartment and what appears to be a crime scene. She discovers that Luke has been stabbed to death. Ellen and Claude talk about the murder. Ellen says that Mark made her promise not to say anything, but, visibly upset, makes it clear that she was present at Luke's death. Claude tries to persuade Ellen to run away with her, but she refuses, returning to Mark.

Claude goes to the club that Luke told her about and meets a guitarist called Lucy (Leisha Hailey). She goes to Lucy's apartment where they play music and get to know each other. Lucy kisses Claude. Claude gets upset and leaves. When she gets to her apartment she finds Ellen there. They argue and Ellen suggests that Claude would be glad to be rid of her. Claude says she would die without her.

Claude goes with Ellen to meet Mark. Mark gives Ellen drugs and she seems out of it. Against Mark's wishes, Claude takes Ellen to the bathroom and makes her vomit. Ellen calls Claude her knight in shining armor, which annoys Mark. Mark and his friends make a toast to "life" and Claude, upset that they are acting like nothing has happened, runs out. She goes to Lucy's. They play cards and Lucy asks her if she is going to "freak out" again. They start kissing, but before it can go any further, Claude stops it and leaves. On her way home, Mark is waiting for her on the street. He asks her why Ellen is in her bedroom instead of his. She tells him that she is just trying to help Ellen. She talks about Luke and threatens to tell the police about Mark's involvement. He tells her that Ellen cannot remember what happened that night and that Claude "has nothing on him,".

Claude goes home and finds Ellen in her bedroom. Claude says that they have to tell the police what they know but Ellen says that if they do, she will go to jail. Claude says that she will not let that happen. She begins to kiss Ellen and Ellen responds. Claude tells her that she loves her and Ellen responds "Don't say that, just don't, it fucks it up."

The next day Claude cleans her room, removing all trace of Ellen. She and Jesse go to tell the police what they know and then go to work. Mark and Ellen come in. Claude tells Ellen that she has told the police. The police come in and take Mark away for questioning. Ellen tells Claude that she hates her. Claude says that she knows, and that she's sorry.

Claude is finally able to move on from Ellen and starts having a relationship with Lucy.


Ratings and distribution

The MPAA gave All Over Me an R rating for sexuality and drug use involving teen girls, and for strong language. The film premiered at the 1997 Berlin International Film Festival where it played in the Panorama section.[2] It went on to show at several festivals including the 1997 Turin International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival and the 1998 Lisbon Gay and Lesbian Film Festival. It opened in American theaters on April 25, 1997 distributed by Fine Line Features.[3] It was released in Australian theaters on February 19, 1998. It was released onto Region 1 DVD on June 14, 2005 distributed by Ignite Entertainment. It was released on Region 2 DVD on April 8, 2002 distributed by Millivres Multimedia.[4]



Critical response to All Over Me was generally positive. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a "fresh" rating of 84% based on 25 reviews.[5] Critics were impressed with this directional debut and described it as powerful and conspicuously well-made.[6][7] They praised the Sichel sisters for telling a story of adolescence and friendship which is at once honest, realistic and authentic, while remaining subtle, subdued and compassionate.[8][9] Emanuel Levy called it complex and interesting, and Marjorie Baumgarten called it a film for "riot grrrls of all ages".[6][10] Janet Maslin of The New York Times praised it as a confident first feature but said that it has more style than substance.[7] Its detractors included Don Willmot, who found it melodramatic, and E!, which described it as titillating but contrived; "a walk on the mild side".[11][12]

Alison Folland was widely praised by critics for her performance as Claude. Emanuel Levy called her an instinctive actress who "dominates every frame of the picture".[6] Janet Maslin said Folland brings a "wistful sincerity" to the role.[7] Tara Subkoff was also praised for a performance compared by some to Rosanna Arquette.[7][10] Not all the critics liked her portrayal of Ellen; E! called her "merely grating".[12]

With its coming-of-age theme and exploration of teenage sexuality, All Over Me drew comparisons from critics to other films, in particular Larry Clark's Kids and Maria Maggenti's The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love, both from 1995.[8][10][13] Although similarities were noted, All Over Me was praised for its differences to these two films. E! called it gentler than Kids, and Muskewitz said All Over Me was less exploitative than that film.[9][12] Emanual Levy described it as the far more interesting and complex of the two.[6] Ron Wells said "thank god its not Kids" and Bernstein said that "comparison misses the point".[14][15] When comparing it to The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love, Emanuel Levy called All Over Me "much more accomplished".[6] SplicedWire called it " an ideal companion feature for Todd Solondz's Welcome to the Dollhouse, another female-centred coming-of-age film from the mid-1990s.[16]


All Over Me won the Teddy Award for Best Feature Film at the 1997 Berlin International Film Festival.[17] It was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 1997 Sundance Film Festival, the Open Palm Award at the 1997 Gotham Awards and the Outstanding Film (Limited Release) Award at the 1998 GLAAD Media Awards. Alison Folland was nominated for the Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead and the Chlotrudis Award for Best Actress.


The film score for All Over me was composed by Miki Navazio.[18] The soundtrack to the film was released on the TVT label on April 29, 1997.[19] It features songs from several indie and riot grrl musicians interspersed with parts of Navazio's score.

All Over Me
Released April 29, 1997
Label TVT
Producer Bill Coleman, Alex Sichel
Professional reviews

Track listing

  1. "Hello" (Lori Barbero, Kat Bjelland, Maureen Herman) performed by Babes in Toyland
  2. "Ellen and Claude Jammin" (Miki Navazio)
  3. "Shy" performed by Ani Difranco
  4. "Hole In The Ground" (Mary Timony) performed by Helium
  5. "I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone" (Corin Tucker, Lora McFarlane) performed by Sleater-Kinney
  6. "Game Song" (Tuscadero) performed by Tuscadero
  7. "Jackie Blue" (Larry Lee, Steve Cash) performed by Ozark Mountain Daredevils
  8. "Claude Sees Ellen And Mark" (Navazio)
  9. "Squeezebox Days" (Leisha Hailey) performed by The Murmurs
  10. "Dragon Lady" (Carla Bozulich, Daniel Keenan, Kevin Fitzgerald, William Tutton) performed by Geraldine Fibbers
  11. "Dynamite" (Alison Pipitone) performed by Pipitone
  12. "Empty Glasses" (Kim Deal) performed by The Amps
  13. "Descent" (Remy Zero) performed by Remy Zero
  14. "6 a.m. Jullander Shere" (Tjinder Singh) performed by Cornershop
  15. "The Kiss" (Navazio)
  16. "Dimming Soul" (Michelle Malone) performed by Malone
  17. "Pissing in a River" (Patti Smith, Ivan Kral) performed by Patti Smith Group
  18. "Superglider" (Isabel Monteiro, Daron Robinson) performed by Drugstore
  19. "Finale" (Navazio)
  20. "Something's Burning" (12 Rounds) performed by 12 Rounds


  1. ^ "Production notes". Fine Line Features - All Over Me Official Site. Retrieved 2007-11-04. 
  2. ^ "1997 Programme". Berlinale. Retrieved 2007-08-31. 
  3. ^ "All Over Me (1997)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2008-04-15. 
  4. ^ "All Over Me (1997) DVD". 
  5. ^ "All Over Me". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2007-08-01. 
  6. ^ a b c d e Levy, Emanuel. "Film Review - All Over Me". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  7. ^ a b c d Maslin, Janet (1997-04-25). "All Over Me (1996) - Friendship Bent by Gender". The New York Times. Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  8. ^ a b Guthmann, Edward (1997-04-25ß). "Teens as They Really Are - All Over Me gets inside adolescent girls' troubled world". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  9. ^ a b Muskewitz, Greg. "All Over Me - Talent All Around". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  10. ^ a b c Baumgarten, Marjorie (1997-07-04). "All Over Me". The Austin Chronicle. Retrieved 2007-08-16. 
  11. ^ Willmott, Don (2005). "All Over Me Movie Review". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  12. ^ a b c "All Over Me - E! Reviews". E! Online. Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  13. ^ Russo, Lea. "All Over Me Review". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  14. ^ Wells, Ron (1997-04-14). "All Over Me Review". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  15. ^ Bernstein, Nell (1997-04-25). "The Truth About Girls". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  16. ^ "All Over Me Review". Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  17. ^ "TEDDY TWENTY TRIBUTE - Berlinale to celebrate the TEDDY with a programme of 36 films". Berlinale. 2005-12-14. Retrieved 2007-08-31. 
  18. ^ "Filmmaker Biographies". Fine Line Features - All Over Me Official Site. Retrieved 2008-04-15. 
  19. ^ "All Over Me > Overview". Allmusic. Retrieved 2008-04-15. 

External links

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