Currently Browsing: Reviews: B-D
The slickly aesthetic and surprisingly heartfelt Banana Split is a stellar follow-up to writer, director, and actress Hannah Marks’s first feature After Everything. It has a lot to say about love, friendship, and coming of age, and comes in a snarky but bubblegum-pop package. (GPG: 5/5). Review by Contributing Editor Giorgi Plys-Garzotto The summer before […]
Move over, Hugo! Pamela B. Greene’s new documentary on Alice Guy-Blache will give another parent of cinema the spotlight, after cimematic history has been dominated by the Lumiere brothers and Georges Melies for too long. Watch this film to see not only Guy-Blache but also the many Hollywood luminaries Green interviews about her. (GPG: 5/5) […]
Co-writer Niceole R. Levy brings an intersectional femininst perspective to an already progressive story. The Banker brings up uncomfortable realities of race, gender, and class, by telling the story of two men who acted as Robin Hoods for many black Americans during the Jim Crow era. (GPG: 4/5). Review by Contributing Editor Giorgi Plys-Garzotto If […]
In Buffaloed, directed by Tanya Wexler, “Peg Dahl” (Zoey Deutch) is the female Wolf of Wall Street. Except instead of taking from the rich via hedge funds, she is collecting debt from the poor. (CPG 2/5) Peg has always been obsessed with money. Growing up extremely poor and, after losing her dad, watching her mom […]
Director Cathy Yan collaborates with writer Christina Hodson on action-packed adventure superhero feature “Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of one Harley Quinn)”. This is a psychotic catharsis on a rollercoaster of glitter and violent fun. Margot Robbie stars as the kooky Harley Quinn and is accompanied by a notable female cast including Rosie Perez, Jurnee Smollet-Bell, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and newcomer Cassandra Cain. (KIZJ: 4/5)
The lovechild of Midsommar and 2018’s cult horror hit Mandy, writer Scarlett Amaris’s Color Out of Space brings HP Lovecraft back from the dead, without the eugenics this time. I didn’t know a movie could be this mind-blowing; I needed my mind blown first to be able to comprehend how blown my mind would be […]
Meghna Gulzar’s heartbreaking film centers on 19-year-old Malti (Deepika Padukone) in the aftermath of an acid attack as she deals with legal and personal ramifications of the trauma. Told with grit and grace, this shocking true story follows Malti on her road to recovery. (BKP: 4/5) Review by Vice President and Managing Editor Brigid K. […]
Clemency (written and directed by Chinonye Chukwu) follows prison warden Bernadine Williams (played wonderfully by Alfre Woodard) as she struggles to deal with the psychological implications of carrying out death row executions. (DLH: 4/5) Review by FF2 Associate Dayna Hagewood Clemency opens with an immediate feeling of claustrophobia as Warden Bernadine walks down a stark […]
While some may critique its lack of subtlety, Sophia Takal’s Black Christmas is exactly the kind of energy we need going into the 2020 election cycle. Why subtweet Nazis with antifascist undertones when you can just have your characters roll up their sleeves and get the purge done themselves? (GPG: 4/5). Review by Contributing Editor […]
As a rule, 3D films have been a huge disappointment for me as a moviegoer. It seems only the big budget action films were in 3D. The movies cost more and often the result was new and interesting ways for the film to throw pointy-things at the viewer. The only exception for me was the […]
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood is a truly “beautiful” film. Love, pain, a family working through their issues–it’s got it all. The film is centered around the beloved children’s show host Mister Rogers and a reporter assigned to write an article about why he is a hero. Director Marielle Heller managers to make the […]
Director and writer Elizabeth Banks’ new film Charlie’s Angels is the next installment of female dominated secret network of spies who save the world. This film empowers all women of any age to be independent and unashamed if their power. (SYJ: 4.5/5) Review by FF2 Intern Sophia Y Jin Charlie’s Angels begins with an intimate, […]
Wing-Sum Lam, Yuan Li, and Yimeng Xue team up to write the screenplay for “Better Days”, a movie with a realistic take on how far bullying can go. Set in Anqiao city in 2011, Derek Tsang directs a piece that marries the stresses of China’s rigorous academic system with the traumatic experiences of bullying at school. What starts off as a bullying story with a teenage friendship, quickly becomes a deep dive that inspects the damaged psyche of these teenagers through heartfelt emotion. (KIZJ: 4/5)
Britt-Marie Was Here directed by Tuva Novotny tracks the life of Britt-Marie (Pernilla August) a 63-year-old housewife faced with the choice of leaving her unfaithful husband for a job as a Little League soccer coach. Endearing and heartwarming, based off of an original novel titled A Man Called Ove, the film stands out as an […]
Saturday Night Live alum Darrell Hammond brings his 2011 memoir “God, If You’re Not Up There, I’m F*cked: Tales of Stand-Up, Saturday Night Live, and Other Mind-Altering Mayhem” to life in this emotionally raw documentary of overcoming childhood trauma. (BKP: 4.5/5) Review by Vice President and Managing Editor Brigid K. Presecky “You overcame sh*t, too.” […]
In director-writer Wendy McColm’s new film Birds Without Feathers she tells the story of how six strangers seek attention in the most toxic and ineffective ways. A supposed dark comedy, Birds Without Feathers, showcases six rejects over the course of one weekend. (SYJ: 1/5) Review written by FF2Media Intern Sophia Y Jin Identity thief […]
From prolific director and women-in-film advocate Gurinder Chadha comes Blinded by the Light, a joyful and meaningful story about a Pakistani teenager growing up in 1980s England who discovers the music of Bruce Springsteen. The universal theme of connecting with the work of a singular and special artist is carried on Blinded by the Light’s […]
Riverdale star Camila Mendes stars in Sara Seligman’s Coyote Lake, an on-the-border thriller about a mother and daughter who kill human traffickers. What it lacks in thrills (and overall plot), it makes up for in the world Seligman creates, one which gives Mendes a chance to share another side of her acting abilities. (BKP: 3.5/5) […]
Director Marie Losier documents the fascinatingly different life of “fabulous” wrestler Saul Armendariz – aka Cassandro, the “Liberace of Lucha Libre.” (Got all that?) Taking us along the five-year journey nearing the end of his career, we delve into the legacy of a unique, entertaining performer. (BKP: 3.5/5) Review by Vice President and Managing Editor […]
From IMDb: A look at the working environment of a chambermaid in one of Mexico City’s most luxurious hotels. The Chambermaid opens 6/28. FF2 review coming soon!
From IMDb: A documentary film that tells the story of young people leaving their home country to try their luck somewhere else. Back to the Fatherland opens 6/14. FF2 review coming soon!
Documentary filmmakers Gil Levanon and Kat Rohrer explore the current state of Israel and its connection to the outside world in their film Back to the Fatherland. Their honest efforts fall short as the story gets muddled within a poorly constructed structure and moments of questionable politics. (AG: 1/5 stars). Review by FF2 Intern Anika […]
From IMDb: A normal father’s family life is turned upside down when his son discovers he has another family. Being Frank opens 6/14. FF2 review coming soon!
Being Frank, directed by Miranda Bailey, is a feel-good comedy about college-bound Philip, who, fed up by his strict, emotionally distant father, sneaks out during spring break with his friend Lewis and accidentally discovers his father’s biggest secret. Shocked and conflicted by his father’s second family, Pat becomes an unwitting accomplice to the lie. Will […]
Blue Note Records: Beyond the Notes, directed by Sophie Huber, showcases the history of Blue Note Records, home of many groundbreaking jazz musicians like Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Thelonious Monk. Filled with clips and photos of the artists at work and underscored by their electrifying music, this film is a worthy tribute to the iconic […]
In director Olivia Wilde’s new film Booksmart, all hell breaks loose for the two high school geeks on the night before their graduation. The two academic superstars realize perfect grades are not the be all and end all. (SYJ: 3.5/5) Review written by FF2 Media Intern Sophia Y. Jin A meditation tape […]
Directed by Gail Mancuso, A Dog’s Journey is the sequel to A Dog’s Purpose, a hit feature in 2017. Part 2 continues the story of Bailey, a dog who reincarnates as many different breeds to save a girl’s lost soul. While the film has a heartwarming conclusion, it gets there through a series of tragic […]
Synopsis: Mary Harron, director of American Psycho and I Shot Andy Warhol, has just released her newest true crime film Charlie Says (2019). Headlining stars such as Matt Smith, this film asks its viewer to recontextualize the myth of the Manson family cult to become more understanding of the women who were trapped in his […]
From IMDb: Story of a mentally ill young man attempting to come to grips with his haunting past by seeking solace and understanding in the unfamiliar Eastern culture of Thailand. Bardo Blues opens 5/3 in NYC. FF2 review coming soon!
During the 70’s and early 80’s, the Bronx was burning. The documentary, Decade of Fire, explores the history of this chaotic time, delving deeper and uncovering the many factors that have put the Bronx at risk. (KAC: 4/5) Review by FF2 Intern Katharine Cutler Vivian Vázquez Irizarry is a Bronx native. As a child, she […]