Hollywood Insider - News Entertainment & Culture

Substance & Meaningful Entertainment

Against Gossip & Scandal

Independent Media Network

Global Stories From Local Perspective

Factual Culture News

The Hollywood Insider The Lost Daughter Review, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Olivia Colman, Venice Film Festival

Photo: ‘The Lost Daughter’

After years of being a star in front of the screen, Maggie Gyllenhaal is ready to take on a different role with her debut film ‘The Lost Daughter’ which she both wrote and directed. Based on the 2006 novel by Elena Ferrante, the film premiered at the 78th Annual Venice Film Festival and received not only a four-minute standing ovation, but also earned Gyllenhaal a Golden Osella for Best Screenplay. The theatrical release will be on December 17th followed by the Netflix release on December 31st and has already garnered critical acclaim, including 100% on Rotten Tomatoes.

Oscar-winning Olivia Colman will star as the protagonist, Leda, alongside a slew of other talents. According to Insider, “It is with great pleasure that I report Gyllenhaal is not only a director worth your time and money but a director of great skill and wit. Her debut behind the camera is a clever and complex tale that juggles themes of motherhood and loss while mulling around the thrilling milieu of a contemporary psychological crime caper with an ultra A-list cast.”

Related article: ‘In the Heights’ – Behind the Scenes and Full Commentary/Reactions from Cast & Crew

Related article: The Hollywood Insider’s CEO Pritan Ambroase: “The Importance of Venice Film Festival as the Protector of Cinema”

‘The Lost Daughter’ Synopsis

The story follows Leda, a woman alone on a seaside holiday in Greece. She becomes fascinated with the family vacationing alongside her, specifically the young mother, Nina (played by Dakota Johnson) and her young daughter. Her presence, as well as her raucous extended family, causes Leda to reflect on her past: raising her two daughters who are now in their twenties, her marriage which eventually ends in divorce, and juggling her career as a literary professor. The reflections aren’t necessarily positive though, and depict a more complex look at motherhood that isn’t often discussed. Nina misplaces her young daughter, and Leda comes to the rescue by finding her.

But, for unknown reasons, she decides to keep the daughter’s toy which she found as well. The action forces her to confront the unconventional choices she made as a mother and the resulting consequences on her family, causing her to unravel in slow building suspense. Jessie Buckley acts as Leda’s younger counterpart, and although she doesn’t necessarily look like Colman, the two are mirrors of each other. Indiewire writes of the performance, “Despite a physical dissimilarity that Gyllenhaal makes no crass attempt to hide, has a such a synergy of body language and mannerism with Colman, that their performances became one palimpsest, the lines of one showing faintly through onto the other: Buckley an echo of the past for Colman; Colman a ghost of the future for Buckley.” 

Related article: MUST WATCH – The Hollywood Insider’s CEO Pritan Ambroase’s Love Letter to Black Lives Matter – VIDEO

Subscribe to The Hollywood Insider’s YouTube Channel, by clicking here.

A Specific Adaptation In Mind

After producing the 2018 film ‘The Kindergarten Teacher’, Gyllenhaal began to want even more from behind the camera, and she knew exactly where she wanted to begin. She wanted to adapt a different book of Ferrante’s called ‘The Days Of Abandonment’, which she had recently read and loved. After reaching out to Ferrante’s team though, they learned that the rights to the story were stuck in development. It worked out okay though, don’t worry, because she turned to the lesser-known novel by the same author. According to Vanity Fair, while reading ‘The Lost Daughter’, Gyllenhaal felt that, “some secret piece of my experience as a mother, as a lover, as a woman in the world, was being spoken out loud for the first time.” When Gyllenhaal finally reached out again to Ferrante, she warned her that she did want to change some aspects of the film (such as the location in Italy). Ferrante, to Gyllenhaal’s relief, agreed under one circumstance- that Gyllenhaal directs it.

Ferrante explained that this was because she did not want to stifle another female artist in such a male-dominated industry, even if that meant altering her original work and using it as a launchpad for something new. In her 2018 The Guardian essay, Ferrante writes, “It’s important for me – for her, for all women – that her work be hers and turn out well. Mine already exists, with its strengths and defects. In the great warehouse of the arts, set up mainly by men, women have for a relatively short time been seeking the means and opportunities to give a form of their own to what they have learned from life. So I don’t want to say: you have to stay inside the cage that I constructed. We’ve been inside the male cage for too long – and now that that cage is collapsing, a woman artist has to be absolutely autonomous.”

Related article: Why Queen Elizabeth II Is One Of The Greatest Monarchs | Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II of United Queendom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland (Video Insight)

Limited Time Offer – FREE Subscription to The Hollywood Insider

Click here to read more on The Hollywood Insider’s vision, values and mission statement here – Media has the responsibility to better our world – The Hollywood Insider fully focuses on substance and meaningful entertainment, against gossip and scandal, by combining entertainment, education, and philanthropy.

A Uniquely Feminine Point Of View

The themes of ‘The Lost Daughter’ are from the perspective of a distinctly feminine gaze. The story revolves around motherhood and the unforgivingness of being a human while expected to be a saint. The story does not gloss over the resentment, frustrations, and challenges that accompany being a mother, and instead leans into Leda’s pain. Johnson told Variety, “It’s very honest about how being a woman is sometimes messy and sometimes ugly and that’s ok. Being a mother is complicated…and everyone is just trying to do their best. It’s important that we shine a light on how complicated it is to be a woman and it’s really ok and people should be allowed to express themselves to their full potential.” Leda confesses in the film that she isn’t a natural mother, something that typically women shy away from admitting; for some, it’s a gift, and for others, it’s a burden, and for most, it’s somewhere in between.

Leda wants to find her own pleasure, her own passions in the world and feeling trapped in the confines of what she’s expected to be. She’s not perfect, that’s for sure, but who is? The unseen world appearing on the big screen is special, and Gyllenhaal’ hopes will resonate with audiences as it resonated with her. “I felt that something secret and true had been said out loud. And I was both disturbed and comforted by that.

Related article: The Hollywood Insider’s CEO Pritan Ambroase: “The Importance of Venice Film Festival as the Protector of Cinema”

Related article: The Masters of Cinema Archives: The Hollywood Insider Pays Tribute to ‘La Vie En Rose’, Exclusive Interview with Director Olivier Dahan

Related article: – Want GUARANTEED SUCCESS? Remove these ten words from your vocabulary| Transform your life INSTANTLY

I immediately thought how much more intense the experience would be in a movie theatre, with other people around. And I set to work on this adaptation. I find that the script has attracted other people interested in exploring these secret truths about motherhood, sexuality, femininity, desire,” Gyllenhaal said in an interview with Deadline. Gyllenhaal, a mother of two herself, alongside Ferrante, and a slew of talented actresses including Colman, Buckley, and Johnson, make sure that film’s perspective is deeply feminine, something that hasn’t been shown on screen often. 

Cast: Olivia Colman, Dakota Johnson, Peter Skarsgaard, Jessie Buckley, Paul Mescal, Oliver Jackson-Cohen

Director: Maggie Gyllenhaal

Written by: Maggie Gyllenhaal

Based on the book by Elena Ferrante

By Kylie Bolter

Click here to read The Hollywood Insider’s CEO Pritan Ambroase’s love letter to Black Lives Matter, in which he tackles more than just police reform, press freedom and more – click here.

An excerpt from the love letter: The Hollywood Insider’s CEO/editor-in-chief Pritan Ambroase affirms, “The Hollywood Insider fully supports the much-needed Black Lives Matter movement. We are actively, physically and digitally a part of this global movement. We will continue reporting on this major issue of police brutality and legal murders of Black people to hold the system accountable. We will continue reporting on this major issue with kindness and respect to all Black people, as each and every one of them are seen and heard.

Just a reminder, that the Black Lives Matter movement is about more than just police brutality and extends into banking, housing, education, medical, infrastructure, etc. We have the space and time for all your stories. We believe in peaceful/non-violent protests and I would like to request the rest of media to focus on 95% of the protests that are peaceful and working effectively with positive changes happening daily. Media has a responsibility to better the world and The Hollywood Insider will continue to do so.”

Ways to support Black Lives Matter Movement to end systemic racism

More Interesting Stories From The Hollywood Insider

Want GUARANTEED SUCCESS? Remove these ten words from your vocabulary| Transform your life INSTANTLY

Compilation: All James Bond 007 Opening Sequences From 1962 Sean Connery to Daniel Craig

Do you know the hidden messages in ‘Call Me By Your Name’? Find out behind the scenes facts in the full commentary and In-depth analysis of the cinematic masterpiece

A Tribute To The Academy Awards: All Best Actor/Actress Speeches From The Beginning Of Oscars 1929-2019 | From Rami Malek, Leonardo DiCaprio To Denzel Washington, Halle Berry & Beyond | From Olivia Colman, Meryl Streep To Bette Davis & Beyond

In the 32nd Year Of His Career, Keanu Reeves’ Face Continues To Reign After Launching Movies Earning Over $4.3 Billion In Total – “John Wick”, “Toy Story 4”, “Matrix”, And Many More

The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter, The Lost Daughter


  • Kylie Bolter

    Kylie is a writer obsessed with entertainment, most notably in film and television. Her background in screenwriting tends to make her focus on dialogue and development of characters. Although she enjoys watching new material with a critical eye, she is very easily entertained and quick to laugh.  The Hollywood Insider’s dedication to journalism without gossip is something that she values, along with their dedication to meaningful representation and substantial storytelling.  She enjoys finding the balance between relatability and artistry, no matter the format.

Website It Up