Sarah Silverman will make her dramatic debut in I Smile Back. The trailer provides a glimpse into a storyline movie watchers know all too well—white, middle-class housewife with a seemingly picturesque life hides her mounting addiction and depression behind closed doors.
I Smile Back is a drama film directed by Adam Salky and based on the 2008 novel of the same name by Amy Koppelman. It premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and will also show at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Silverman plays Laney Brooks, a New Jersey stay-at-home mom with two children, who—after going off of her lithium—succumbs to self destructive urges of infidelity, alcohol and drugs.
Silverman looks longingly at her children, anxious of how her behavior and genetics will affect them, “Nobody tells you that it’s terrifying to love someone so much.”
The film has gotten mixed reviews, but the consensus is that Silverman’s performance either made or saved the film. Her struggle with mental illness and motherhood in the film is strikingly similar to her public decision not to have children citing her family’s history of depression. Silverman commented on The Conversation with Amanda DeCadenet, “I just don’t feel strong enough to see that [depression] in a child.”
I Smile Back comes to theaters on Oct. 23.