Matt Spicer's first feature length directorial film is so spot on with it's examination of social media slaves, that a lot of people will not like it because it hits home. There is an entire subculture out there that takes social media friending much too far.


Audrey Paza - who we just saw in the incredibly funny independent comedy "The Little Hours" - plays Ingrid Thorburn; when we first meet her she is sitting in her car upset looking at the posts of a social media friends wedding pictures. You know, the ones that people post all the time about special events in their lives.


What we quickly learn is that Ingrid was not invited to the wedding. Moreover, she is parked outside the wedding watching these images and feeling hurt that she wasn't invited. The reason we soon learn is that the bride didn't know her beyond randomly friending her on social media. Never mind, Ingrid goes in, maces the bride and gets arrested for assault.

She gets institutionalized for a while with the hopes of bringing her back to reality. As is typical of the American penal system she is released and sent home to her now deceased mother who left her the home and a bunch of money. What a great chance to start over.


She immediately lands on Instagram and notices a very popular member named Taylor Sloane (Elizabeth Olsen) who is the new "it" girl with millions of followers. People follow her and love doing what she does; buying what she buys. Taylor has branded herself and is making pretty good bucks doing so.


Within an instant, Ingrid finds herself fascinated by Taylor and makes a friend request. Of course she's ecstatic when Taylor friends her and... she back into the social media slave trade. She withdraws all the money her mother left her and flies out to Los Angeles as soon as she can so that she can be with her new best bud. She stalks her until they finally meet and somehow they actually become close.


But a person with an obsession is never close enough and things get crazy, especially when Taylor's drug addict brother Nicky arrives unexpectantly. To her credit, Ingrid immediately senses Nicky will be a problem, but she is too obsessed to just walk away. Instead, she stays as everything starts to fall apart.


She drags her new landlord/neighbor Dan Pinto (O'Shea Jackson Jr.) into her life, while also putting a few dents in his fictionalized life - he's obsessed with Batman. She places herself in the middle of the relationship between Taylor and her beau Ezra O'Keefe (Wyatt Russell) an ersatz painter. But what she has done is, once again assumed far more than was meant.


Audrey Plaza is perfect as the mentally unstable Ingrid, she plays whacko well, as does Elizabeth Olsen who specializes in off-kilter personalities.


"Ingrid Goes West" is a rock solid dramatic comedy that is more realistic than it is funny. It is an excellent commentary on those so obsessed with other people's social media lives they lose themselves.   -- GEOFF BURTON