Zoey Deutch, who delivers a standout performance in the new film Flower, is dedicated to her acting career, but she has also has passions outside the business. During the Flower interviews, Deutch talked about how a little insight from Gloria Steinem helped center her efforts “to make change and to do something.”
Though it’s essentially a dark comedy that can be taken as an escapist romp, Flower has much more brewing under the surface. Directed by Max Winkler (Ceremony) and set in the San Fernando Valley, the narrative centers on Erica Vandross (Zoey Deutch), a 17-year-old who extorts money from middle aged men after giving them blow jobs. Her friends Kala (Dylan Gelula) and Claudine (Maya Eshet) are part of the operation, and their game takes on an even deeper turn after they decide to help her stepbrother Luke (Joey Morgan) exact vengeance on the teacher (Adam Scott) who molested him.
As witnessed in Ceremony, Winkler has a gift for shooting crackerjack dialogue within an intriguing landscape, and there’s a ton of tonal and visual shifts that refreshingly keep viewers on their toes. Flower’s heart and soul, however, lies in how one processes tragedy and learns to live through another day no matter what the cost.
“(Erica) is a teen vigilante taking revenge on an alleged child molester,” said Deutch. “She’s morally ambiguous. She is fragile and complicated and, quite frankly, frustrating at times which I think speaks honestly to being a teenager. I know for myself I was very frustrated and frustrating – so I can relate to that element of her character.”
Deutch is also speaking honestly on her journey as a millennial who wants to make a difference in the world, and one of her priorities is her continued work with Planned Parenthood :
Gloria Steinem said ‘You can do anything but you can’t do everything.’ It spoke volumes to me about, right at this moment where I feel overwhelmed with the desire to make change and to do something. I’ve talked to a lot of my friends and fellow millennials and they feel similarly. When I heard that, it was so powerful to me because it became so clear what that one thing was that I was so passionate about. And that’s reproductive health and women’s rights.”
Full audio version of Zoey Deutch’s comments:
Part of her work with Planned Parenthood included speaking at the Capitol during the 45th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. “I would never claim to be particularly well spoken but it was super informative and meaningful,” said Deutch. “It is a funny thing when you come to terms with the fact that you have chosen a career path that you’re constantly forced to make everything about you or you’re asked to make things about you. When you realize that, you go ‘Oh s**t I don’t think I want to make everything about me.’ I have found it has been neat to be able to shed a light on something that is bigger than me.”
Flower, co-starring Kathryn Hahn and Tim Heidecker, is now playing in select theaters.