By Linda Shortman
I like watching artists grow in their craft. Katie Holmes has come a long way. Even if the film is just OK, she usually delivers. I first saw the young actress in Wonder Boys in a small part, playing a misguided college student. She worked her signature smile well.
A few years later I saw Pieces of April. Her performance was edgy and heartfelt with a smirk and just the right amount of sass. Holmes owned the character and the story hit me in all the right places. She truly carried the film. This is one of my all-time favorite films.
When she showed up in Batman Begins, I liked what she did with the character of Rachel Dawes – assured and strong. Parts in Thank You for Smoking and Mad Money were strong as well.
She stepped into a darker character in the film Miss Meadows which I first saw at Tribeca Film Festival. A very somber film where she plays a pistol-packing vigilante with a sweet facade. I loved it. Another edgy performance that worked for me. She was not there for the Q&A, but the director gushed about her talent and work ethic.
In 2016, Holmes brought the film All We Had to Tribeca Film Festival. This was her directorial debut, she also produced and stared in the film about a woman down on her luck, making bad decisions, trying to find a life for she and her daughter. When the lights came up a very confident Holmes was front and center proudly presenting her work. After answering quite a few questions at length, she did take a moment to acknowledge her family and wish her daughter, sitting in the front row, a happy birthday. It was nice to see an actor I enjoy, take the reins behind the scenes of a film. She’s grown as an actor, become a producer and director and I look forward to more of her work.
These rentals are some of my favorites featuring Katie Holmes:
A flawed college professor finds himself in more than one awkward situation. Holmes is young and not-so-innocent with an outstanding cast.
April is the black sheep of the family and offers to host her estranged family for Thanksgiving. The family’s road trip from the suburbs to NYC parallel April’s story of holiday prep. Holmes gives an edgy performance that I enjoyed.
As the Assistant DA in Gotham, she does a good job with the character in the first installment of Nolan’s Batman series.
Stealing from the Federal Reserve is the basis of this heist film. An inside job with a twist.
Miss Meadows is an elementary school teacher. She is also a gun-toting vigilante. She is a woman on a misguided mission.
In her directorial debut, Holmes chooses a tough story of a down and out women trying to make a better life for herself and her daughter. Poor decisions challenge her along the way. The supporting cast is excellent.