Red (Krew Boylan) is a hot mess. Scatterbrained, always late for every appointment and soon to be fired from the latest job. Her main refuge is disappearing into the world of Dolly Parton. After she is spotted in full Dolly regalia at an office party and offered a tryout for a tribute show by a lady named Teeth (Celeste Barber) her life changes forever.
When a story is built around a person finding their way in life, it’s always more engaging if you feel empathetic towards that person and it is here that Seriously Red presents several challenges. Had the character of Red been a man their behaviour would be easy to dismiss as boorish and guilty of moments of toxic masculinity.
Flipping the script around to the female gender diffuses some of this but it’s still problematic. Within the context of those limitations, you sympathise with Red’s desire to find a place in the world while being frustrated by the circular nature of her self-sabotage. Many of her decisions are hard to fathom and this forces you to try to put yourself in her shoes.
There is no single path to self-fulfilment and the film challenges you to see past your own views on many things. In this regard, it is a successful work and its moments of humour ease the journey. Whether you see this as a provocation or entertainment, only you can decide.