You’re On An Air­plane

Parker Posey Vi­rago €17.99 ★★★★★

The Irish Mail on Sunday - - MORE - NEIL ARMSTRONG

Who would be an ac­tress? The money’s usu­ally rub­bish, good parts are dif­fi­cult to come by and di­rec­tors make you feel even more in­se­cure than you al­ready are. That seems to be the ex­pe­ri­ence of Parker Posey. Now best known for her roles in Christo­pher Guest mock­u­men­taries such as Best In Show and Mas­cots, she has also ap­peared in big Hol­ly­wood movies and is cur­rently play­ing the ma­nip­u­la­tive bad­die Dr Smith in Net­flix’s re­boot of Lost In Space. Her mem­oir is framed as a stream-of-con­scious­ness one-sided chat with the stranger sit­ting next to her on a plane. She ran­domly hops from one sub­ject to an­other so, in among the fam­ily and showbusiness anec­dotes, there is, for ex­am­ple, a seven-page de­scrip­tion of how to throw a clay pot and a recipe for mi­crowaved Ched­dar cheese (Parme­san is a sug­gested top­ping).

She’s at her best on her ca­reer. She con­stantly fears be­ing fired. ‘I think ev­ery job is my last,’ she writes. She cries on the phone to her man­ager be­cause she doesn’t have work. When re­placed in a the­atre role by a more ‘bank­able’ star, she has a ner­vous break­down.

How­ever, she passed on the part in Girl, In­ter­rupted that went to An­gelina Jolie and she didn’t take au­di­tions for Speed or Meet The Par­ents se­ri­ously enough.

All in­ter­est­ing stuff but, frus­trat­ingly, she is for­ever skip­ping off to the next recipe or a story about her ‘emo­tional sup­port dog’. I wish one of her four ed­i­tors had made her stick to a more con­ven­tional nar­ra­tive. And if Posey ever sits next to you on a plane, don’t ex­pect a quiet trip.

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