WHEN WILL I BE LOVED is a hip, scintillating film that takes a classic Hollywood form – that of leading lady as black widow – and brings it edgy new life.
James Toback, a writer and director known for provocative explorations of race and gender relations in films such as BLACK AND WHITE, TWO GUYS AND A GIRL and THE PICK-UP ARTIST, has created a femme fatale for the 21st century. His leading lady is Vera, played by Neve Campbell, a beautiful young woman who is exploring the limits of her vast sexual and intellectual power. We see Vera picking up men on the street, videotaping her romps with a female lover, and having sexually frank discussions with her potential employer. The daughter of wealthy and supportive parents, she is seemingly improvising her way through the beginning of her life as an adult but how much of her behavior is spontaneous and how much is cunningly calculated?
Vera is dating a young hustler named Ford, played by Fredrick Weller. Ford verbally nimble, shameless and shamelessly manipulative seems compelled to use women to make himself rich and famous, from straight loans to a (unintentionally) comical effort to entice hip-hop impresario Damon Dash. Ford sees his chance to make serious money when he meets an aging Italian media mogul, Count Tommaso Lupo played by Dominic Chianese. The Count has developed an obsession with Vera and Ford concocts a plan to pimp Vera out to Lupo for $100,000. To Ford’s naïve surprise, Vera agrees leading Ford into the delusion that his powers as a psychologically gifted fast talker are unsurpassed.
The Count is a self made billionaire aestheste, who in the course of what he thinks is a skillful manipulation, ends up being manipulated himself into providing Vera with $1 million instead of the intended $100,000. Vera is a natural improviser and each of her faithful decisions (faithful to both Ford and the Count) is a spontaneous response to circumstances as they arise. As a result, WHEN WILL I BE LOVED has a feel of freshness and surprise.