Learn How to Be Beautiful in Nadia Lee Cohen’s Satirical Short

Nowness’ latest short film appears to be a Stepford Wives programming video. Retro stylized socialites climb the social ladder in rubber masks—reminiscent of Leatherface’s drag phase in that beautifully horrible ’90s Texas Chainsaw Massacre sequel starring Renée Zellweger and Matthew McConaughey.

British filmmaker Nadia Lee Cohen serves a satirical perspective on the standards of femininity with a how-to guide for achieving beauty. The disturbing film manages to frame the concept as a one-size-fits-all process in which conformity is mandatory. It’s also perfectly accompanied by a track from French rockers, La Femme.

Cohen told Nowness about her inspiration behind the short:

“The constant pressure of striving for perfection is so familiar in the world we inhabit. In response to homogeneous ideals of beauty, I wanted to create a satirical world in which the female inhabitants have pushed their appearances into cartoonish, melodramatic and extreme representations of femininity; yet are still looking to improve themselves even further. This is an entirely personal film, which hopefully subtly exposes the cracks beneath the surface; depicted through music, darting eyes beneath masks and subtle wordplay, these features endeavor to puncture an environment that, unless scrutinized, appears entirely perfect.”

Watch Nadia Lee Cohen’s A Guide to Indulgence here.

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