Caroline Barry delivers a truly uncannyt performance as Nellie Bly in 10 Days in a Madhouse, closing this thursday at the NoHo 7 in North Hollywood. Beginning Friday, March 18th at the Presidio in San Fransisco. Playing in select theaters across the US.
10 Days in Madhouse, the critically acclaimed compelling new historical biopic of Nellie Bly’s origin as an investigative journallist, indeed virtually inventing the idea of going undercover, ends it’s run in North Hollywood this Thursday at the NoHo 7. Directed by unapologetic feminist Timothy Hines, the movie features a cast of over 90 percent women.
Hines scoffs at the idea of a male feminist as being weak, “On the contrary, it is men who fear women sharing power who are weak. Every woman deserves the exact same opportunities that every man has. Any argument to the contrary will eventually be relegated to the history books along with beliefs that the world was flat and that the sun revolved around the Earth. The time is now for us to recognize the achievements of half the populace that have been swept under the carpet by male writers who controlled what words were mass replicated. The human race will perish if we don’t grow past our prejudices. Any thought to the contrary is dangerously wrong.”
Above left center: Nellie Bly on New York’s Newspaper row on her way to Joseph Pulitzer’s World Newspaper for her first big assignment to go underconver into the notorious Blackwell’s Asylum to expose corruption, abuse and murder.
Nellie Bly wasn’t interested in writing about typical women’s topics, so at 23, in 1887, on assignment for Joseph Pulitzer’s newspaper, she faked insanity to investigate reports of abuse and murder at the Women’s Lunatic Asylum on Blackwell’s island. She was very convincing, fooling working women, police, a judge, doctors and nurses that she was mentally ill and was instantly declared hopelessly insane.
Nellie reported in her book, 10 Days in a Madhouse that the facility was in such bad shape that a person would go insane from living there for an extended amount of time. This included exposure to extreme temperatures, violent and cruel treatment from the staff and murder.
Above: Keith White plays Peter A> Hendrick, an attorney working to obtain Nellie Bly’s (Caroline Barry) release from Blackwell’s Women’s Insane Asylum.
In her time she was called, “The Greatest reporter in America.”
She was a one of a kind, Nellie Bly, whose real name was Elizabeth Cochrane. In her lifetime she championed the causes of those who faced a corrupt and intrinsically unbalanced playing field in life. She was the first woman reporter on the Front lines in World War One where, upon her arrival, walked into 60 days of direct under siege artillery shelling.
She found herself suddenly in the midst of the worst of what war can bring, with men being blown to bits all around her. Facing disease, carnage and suffering to the greatest degree the human race could inflict upon itself. Before Bly’s life was over she had invented and patented the 55 gallon metal drum to replace fragile barrels that had been used practically since the dawn of humanity.
Nellie Bly was born into wealth. The death of her father ultimately forced her family into poverty and her mother at the mercy of powerful men who controlled what little money flow she had left from the remains of her estate. So young Elizabeth got to see how the rich and the poor were treated from first hand experience. Nellie had to go to work at an early age. And it was an article she read in the newspaper that changed the course of her life.
The National Women’s History Museum in Washington DC put it this way:
“While in Pittsburgh, Bly wrote an indignant letter to the newspaperPittsburgh Dispatch over a columnists’ assertion that women only belonged in the home doing domestic tasks and condemning working women. The newspaper editor was impressed by the letter and offered her a job, also giving her the pen name Nellie Bly.”
“Bly’s first story was about the hardships facing poor working-class girls. Her second story called for reform of the state’s divorce law, something she knew about firsthand from her mother’s divorce from her abusive second husband. Bly then did a series on factory girls working in Pittsburgh. Usually though, Bly was assigned to stories about flower shows and fashion, and after being denied the chance to take on different stories, Bly left the newspaper for New York.”
Above: Alexandra Callas as Miss Grupe, asylum nurse confers with superintendent Dent, played by Christopher Lambert in 10 Days in a Madhouse.
Telling the story of Nellie Bly’s beginnings in New York, the new biopic directed by outspoken feminist Timothy Hines, stars the fresh and charming Caroline Barry as Bly, who has been gaining 2017 Oscar buzz for her portrayal of the legendary brave journalist. Christopher Lambert, known for Highlander, Mortal Kombat, Tarzan: Legend of Greystoke, and the currently in theaters Hail, Caesar!, plays the troubled superintendent of the asylum, Dr. E.C. Dent. Also in the cast is Julia Chantrey who had one of the funniest parts in Tina Fey’s Mean Girls and starred opposite Jessica Chastain in Guillermo del Toro’s Mama which grossed over 170 million dollars. Kelly Le Brock, former supermodel and movie star in films such as, Woman in Red, Weird Science signed on to the picture after turning down roles for a decade.
Based on Bly’s book about her first big assignment working for Joseph Pulitzer and essentially creating undercover reporting, 10 Days in a Madhouse, opened last November 11th at the AMC Empire 25 in Times Square in New York City and with the spirit and tenacity of Bly herself riding over the film’s shoulder, the picture has held on in theaters for 14 weeks to date. The emotionally powerful picture has quietly continued to run in select US theaters with rave reviews and is continuing to expand, Thursday, March 10th is the final day of 10 Days in a Madhouse’ run at the Laemmle NoHo 7 Theater in North Hollywood. Amongst other theaters, 10 Days in a Madhouse opens at the Presidio Theatre in San Francisco on March 18th. March being Women’s History Month, there will also be various event screenings such a benefit for The National Women’s History Museum.
Above: Nellie Bly (Caroline Barry) being taken by ambulence to New York Bellevue hospital before her transfer to the “island”. She called Blackwell’s, “A human ratrap” that “was easy to get in, but impossible to get out.”
With reviews like, “Stunning!” – New York Times, “Must See” – Ms. Magazines, “Awesome, Incredible” – Popcorn Talk Network, “Demands To Be Watched!” – Bust Magazine, and, “Exciting and Inspiring” – Best Feminist, a passionate labor of love, 10 Days in a Madhouse, has been continuing to gain ground in US theaters, drawing on one of Nellie Bly’s most famous quotes, “Energy rightly applied and directed will accomplish anything.”
Ms. Magazine’s Christina Maria Paschyn praised the movie, “Written and directed by Timothy Hines, I can honestly say this movie is a must-see. Nellie Bly’s heroism and courage truly come to life on the screen, thanks to the work of talented up-and-coming actor Caroline Barry. Barry is instantly magnetic as Bly, and it’s hard not to root for and fall in love with her character as the story progresses.”
Above: Nellie Bly (Caroline Barry) being transferred into the system at Bellevue hospital for her transer to Blackwell’s Island Women’s Insane Asylum.
The Ms. Review went on, “Hines also does a great job showing just how grotesque and abusive the conditions really were at Blackwell’s Island Insane Asylum. In the film, Bly encounters creepy and uncaring doctors, sadistic nurses and several incarcerated women who are clearly not insane and should never have been sent to the asylum in the first place. Several are locked up for reasons that would make feminists rage, such as catching their husband having an affair, just being poor, or not being able to speak English well enough to plead their case.”
Summing up her review, the Ms. Magazine critic said, “all of the asylum patients are well played, most particularly by actors Julia Chantrey, Natalia Davidenko and Jessa Campbell. Christopher Lambert is strong as the superintendent,” and “Films like 10 Days in a Madhouse that feature incredible and aspirational female role models deserve to be made, but are largely ignored by sexist movie execs.”
Above: Patient Louise Schanz, (Natalia Davidenko) being commited to Blackwell’s Asylum for no valid reason. Her son was taken away from her in the process.
Bust Magazine’s movie critic, Hanna Lustig said of 10 Days in a Madhouse, “Director Timothy Hines’ modern biopic of the same name stars Caroline Barry as Bly, and captures the journalist’s time on the island in a visceral new way.”
She went on to say, “Not for the faint of heart,” and “10 Days in a Madhouse demands to be watched.”
Above: Caroline Barry as the mother of investigative journalism, Nellie Bly (L) and Julia Chantrey as Anne Neville being commited to Blackwell’s Asylum in 10 Days in a Madhouse.
10 Days in a Madhouse has been playing across the US in select theaters since November 11th. It ends this Thursday March 10th at the Laemmle NoHo 7 movie theater in North Hollywood. Don’t Miss this powerful movie about Nellie Bly’s first breakthrough case that changed the world.
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