Watch at Home: ‘Banana Split’ & more from female filmmakers

Banana Split
Hannah Marks and Liana Liberato in Banana Split.

FF2 Media’s new “Watch at Home” columns list the new films written and/or directed by women filmmakers that are newly available each week on DVD, Video On Demand &/or streaming services.

Here are the new films written and/or directed by women filmmakers now available at home as of 3/27/2020 (with links to FF2 Media reviews posted the week of their theatrical release):

  • 1917 – Krysty Wilson-Cairns (co-writer)
  • Banana Split – Hannah Marks (co-writer)
  • Clemency – Chinonye Chukwu (director/writer)
  • Crip Camp – Nicole Newnham (co-director) (Netflix)
  • Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey – Cathy Yan (director), Christina Hodson (writer)
  • Kill Chain: The Cyber War on America’s Elections – Sarah Teale (co-director) (HBO)
  • Portrait of a Lady on Fire – Céline Sciamma (writer/director) (Hulu)
  • Union – Whitney Hamilton (writer/director)

DANIELLE’S TOP PICK OF THE WEEK

Friendships manage to get complicated in the weeks to go before heading off to college in the coming-of-age comedy, Banana Split.

A trio of high school seniors, April (Hannah Marks), Nick (Dylan Sprouse), and Ben (Luke Spencer Roberts), are in their final summer before leaving for college.  None of them know it at the time but their lives are about to get messy in these final months.  With just months to go before college, April and Nick break up all of a sudden.  When you see some of the montages in a film, it’s not a surprise.

Ben sees this breakup as an opportunity not so much for himself but for his friend, Clara (Liana Liberato).  By introducing Clara to Nick, Ben has upset the balance of friendship.  This is because April is pissed – she has every right to be.  It doesn’t matter that both April and Ben are friends but that he betrayed her trust in setting Nick up.  There’s some great opportunities for comedy and yes, they surely take advantage.

This is the second of two films to premiere in 2018 from the writing team of Hannah Marks and Joey Power.  Unlike their SXSW-premiering After Everything (formerly Shotgun), this one plays as more of a comedy.  There’s still a relationship at the center of the film.  In this case, there’s a few relationships that the two writers explore in this script.  The biggest relationship of all is the female friendship between April and Clara.  If you haven’t paid attention to Hannah Marks yet, she’s an actress and filmmaker to watch.

With a smartly written script that allows for its actors to shine, Banana Split doesn’t disappoint.

Please click HERE for my full review.

© Danielle Solzman (03/27/20) FF2 Media

Featured photos from Banana Split EPK
Photo Credits: Vertical Entertainment

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Danielle Solzman is a Chicago-based film critic and an aspiring filmmaker if she can ever put enough time aside to work on her feature-length trans-led political comedy script. When not in Chicago, she attends various film festivals such as Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, and Toronto. She graduated from Northern Kentucky University with a BA in Public Relations while earning a Masters in Media Communications from Webster University after writing a thesis paper on comic books against the backdrop of the American political culture. Film Critic, Solzy at the Movies Member, Broadcast Film Critics Association Member, Galeca: The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics Member, Alliance of Women Film Journalists Member, Online Association of Female Film Critics Member, Online Film Critics Society Member, Online Film & Television Association Tomatometer Critic
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