Reviews: N-P

‘Promise at Dawn’ a memoir about the depths of a mother’s love

Promise at Dawn, directed by Eric Barbier and co-written with Marie Eynard, is an adaption of Romain Gary’s memoir of the same name. Supposedly near his death bed while vacationing in Mexico, Romain recalls his tumultuous but loving relationship with his mother. A failed actress in Russia, single mother Nina Kachew puts extreme expectations on […]

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Reviews: Q-S

RAISE HELL – THE LIFE & TIMES OF MOLLY IVINS (2019): Review by FF2 Media

From IMDb: The story of media firebrand Molly Ivins, six feet of Texas trouble who took on the Good Old Boy corruption wherever she found it. Raise Hell opens 9/6. FF2 review coming soon!

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Reviews: Q-S

‘Satanic Panic’ is fun, freaky and (surprisingly) feminist

Chelsea Stardust’s directorial debut, Satanic Panic is a wild, gory, over-the-top horror film. Though it’s qualities aren’t meaningful character arcs or perfect plot progression, it will be fun for those who like gore (JRL: 3/5)  Review by FF2 Media Intern Julia Lasker Sam (Hayley Griffith) has a new job as a pizza delivery girl. On […]

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Reviews: A

Clashing cultures persist in ‘American Factory’

American Factory, directed by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert,  explores what happens to General Motors workers in Ohio as the Chinese Fuyao Glass company takes over its old factories. (BV 4.0/5.0) Review by Junior Associate Beatrice Viri Michelle and Barack Obama’s film company “Higher Ground Productions” delivers a deeply thoughtful debut documentary with American Factory. […]

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Reviews: E-G

‘Give Me Liberty’ speeds into chaos and wonderful comedy

Give Me Liberty (directed by Kirill Mikhanovsky and written by Kirill Mikhanovsky and Alice Austen) is a story of beautiful human interaction and the comical mishaps surrounding medical driver Vic (played by non-professional actor Chris Galust) and his journey to get riders to where they need to go. (DLH: 4/5) Review by FF2 Associate Dayna […]

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Reviews: H-J

JACOB’S LADDER (2019): Review by FF2 Media

From IMDb: After returning home from the Vietnam War, veteran Jacob Singer struggles to maintain his sanity. Plagued by hallucinations and flashbacks, Singer rapidly falls apart as the world and people around him morph and twist into disturbing images. A remake of the 1990 thriller starring Tim Robbins. Jacob’s Ladder opens 8/23. FF2 review coming soon!

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Reviews: H-J

JAWLINE (2019): Review by FF2 Media

From IMDb: The film follows 16-year-old Austyn Tester, a rising star in the live-broadcast ecosystem who built his following on wide-eyed optimism and teen girl lust, as he tries to escape a dead-end life in rural Tennessee. Jawline opens 8/23. FF2 review coming soon!

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Bechdel-Wallace List Reviews: T

‘Tigers Are Not Afraid’ is as real as it is magical

Tigers Are Not Afraid (“Vuelven,” written and directed by Issa López) is an intense fantasy-infused drama that follows young Estrella and her cohort of orphaned friends as they struggle to survive the violence and persecution of Mexican cartels. While Tigers Are Not Afraid excels in balancing the fantastical with the harsh reality of the kids’ […]

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Bechdel-Wallace List Reviews: U-W

A complex world of love, writing, and muses in Vita & Virginia

Chanya Button directs and co-writes Vita & Virginia with Dame Eileen Atkins. The adaptation is a glimpse into the affair between Virginia Woolf and Vita Sackville-West starring Isabella Rossellini and Gemma Arterton respectively. Based on a 1992 play of the same name, the film swirls us into the complex relationships surrounding these two women, their writing, and their muses. (KIZJ: 3/5)

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Reviews: A

‘Adam’ a charming and celebratory exploration of the trans and lesbian community

An awkward teen in his last summer of high school decides to spend the long break in New York City with his older sister, who fully embraces the city’s trans and lesbian activist community. The siblings, along with their friends, stumble their way through love, friendship, and pain. Based on Ariel Schrag’s novel of the […]

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Reviews: A

AQUARELA (2018): Review by FF2 Media

The globe-spanning epic Aquarela, from writer Aimara Reques, is a highly conceptual thesis on water in all its forms, particularly as it is being unsettled globally by climate change. At the pace of the glaciers that are its subject, it sounds the alarm of global warming with an eerie calm. However, this film is a […]

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Reviews: B-D

BIRDS WITHOUT FEATHERS (2018): Review by FF2 Media

From IMDb: A wannabe Instagram star, a comedian with stage fright, a depressed motivational speaker and a literal identity thief desperately look for love, approval and admiration out of one another over the course of a long weekend. Birds Without Feathers opens 8/16. FF2 review coming soon!

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Reviews: B-D

‘Blinded by the Light’ celebrates the catharsis of art

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 […]

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Reviews: K-M

Art house documentary ‘Los Reyes’ shows fresh perspective on stories of the youth

Long time collaborating Chilean directors Bettina Perut and Ivan Osnovikoff bring an fresh approach in the form of an art house film to the global documentary scene with their new piece Los Reyes. (KIZJ: 3.5/5)

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Reviews: Q-S

‘The Second Sun’ could have shone brighter

Aiming to celebrate the human ability to survive even the most horrific of events, The Second Sun has an honorable theme. But though director Jennifer Gelfer succeeds in showing glimpses of the miracles life holds if looked at carefully, the quality of narration is too uneven to give full justice to the remarkable plot. (MJJ: […]

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Reviews: U-W

‘Where’d You Go Bernadette’ a frantic search for a depressed mother

Where’d You Go Bernadette, directed by Richard Linklater and written by Linklater, Holly Gent and Vincent Palmo Jr, is a mystery comedy-drama that centers around a mother and daughter’s relationship. Former architect Bernadette Fox is depressed due to trauma and lack of creative outlet. She decides to embark on a trip to Antarctica for a […]

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Reviews: K-M

‘The Kitchen’ shows life of crime in the Irish mob

The Kitchen (2019), directed by Andrea Berloff, is an American shoot ‘em up film starring Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish and Elisabeth Moss. Set back in the 1970’s during New York City’s crime wave, three women become leaders of the local Irish mob after their husbands are arrested. Reviving the mob after incompetent rule, they restore […]

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Reviews: N-P

‘One Child Nation’ tackles intense national issue but fails to finish the job

One Child Nation is a documentary by new mother Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang that attempts to search for answers and perspectives about China’s one child policy beginning in 1979. While One Child Nation often tackles the difficult subject with poise, it lacks a cohesive structure and introduces different strings of narratives that struggle to […]

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zJan's News

19Aug02: The FF2 Week in Review by Jan Lisa Huttner

From Jan Lisa Huttner (Editor-in-Chief of FF2 Media) Five films either written &/or directed by women filmmakers opened in Manhattan theatres this week: Coyote Lake Ladyworld The Nightingale Otherhood Them That Follow Of these five, unfortunately I have only been able ti see two so far. Both are The Nightingale and Otherhood are narrative features. […]

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Bechdel-Wallace List Reviews: B-D

Camila Mendes saves ‘Coyote Lake’

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) […]

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Reviews: K-M

LADYWORLD (2018): Review by FF2 Media

From IMDb: Eight teenage girls become trapped in an endless birthday party after a massive (imaginary?) earthquake. The girls’ sanity and psyches dissolve as they run out of food and water. Ladyworld opens August 2. Review coming soon!

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Reviews: N-P

THE NIGHTINGALE (2018): Review by FF2 Media

The Nightingale is an absolutely unforgettable film that tells the brutal honesty of what living under British colonization was like. It’d be morbid to call it an enjoyable watch, but it is an incredible cinematic experience that’d be a mistake to miss. (HRM: 5/5) Claire (Aisling Franciosi), a young Irish convict, has spent the past […]

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Reviews: N-P

‘Otherhood’: the awkward, midlife-crisis inducing stage after motherhood

Otherhood, directed by Cindy Chupack, is a lighthearted comedy about three mothers in the next stage of life that no one really seems to talk about, the stage after ‘motherhood’. Carol, Gillian and Helen are best friends, who bond over their empty nests. Vindicated after their sons barely acknowledge them on mother’s day, the three […]

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Bechdel-Wallace List Reviews: T

‘Them That Follow’ holds onto every breath

Wild Appalachia country holds its secrets. Writer-directors Britt Poulton and Dan Madison Savage dig at those secrets in Them That Follow, a captivating story of a young pastor’s daughter living in the mountains. Mara (Alice Englert) was raised by her father (Walton Goggins) to be faithful, subservient, and modest. She is all of those things, […]

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Bechdel-Wallace List Reviews: E-G

Valerie Pachner a stellar secret-keeping consultant in ‘The Ground Beneath My Feet’

Austrian writer/director Marie Kreutzer tells the story of workaholic Lola and the familial and romantic relationships she keeps hidden. A blend of personal drama and psychological thriller (without many thrills), The Ground Beneath My Feet is a twisty take on a woman figuring out her work/life balance. (BKP: 3/5) Review by Vice President and Managing […]

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Reviews: E-G

‘For Sama’ an intimate conversation on the female experience of war

For Sama is a documentary, directed by Waad Al-Kateab and Edward Watts, focused on the female experience of war, a real-time narrative compiling Waad’s horrifying experiences in Aleppo. Told as a nonlinear “love letter” from mother to daughter, Waad struggles with the struggle between her daughter’s safety and fighting for the Syria she and her […]

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Reviews: E-G

‘The Great Hack’ examines Cambridge Analytica scandal

The Great Hack directors Karim Amer and Jehane Noujaim uncover the disturbing truth of cyberspace, focusing primarily on the Facebook and Cambridge Analytica scandal that affected the 2016 presidential bid. (BKP: 4/5) Review by Vice President and Managing Editor Brigid K. Presecky Social media: a phrase that, a decade ago, was not used in our […]

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Reviews: H-J

‘Honeyland’ is stunning, heartbreaking, and bee-wildering

Directed by Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov, Honeyland is an observational documentary that brilliantly follows the solitary indigenous life of Hatizde Muratova, the “last female beehunter in Europe,” as she attempts to maintain her bee colonies and care for her ill mother. (DLH: 5/5) Review by FF2 Associate Dayna Hagewood Honeyland is the most visually […]

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Reviews: B-D

‘Cassandro, the Exotico!’ documents struggle with retirement

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  […]

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Reviews: E-G

‘Firecrackers’ is a teenage wonderland masterpiece

Writer/director Jasmin Mozaffari’s film stands out in an already-strong genre of new coming of age stories. With Firecrackers, set in a desolate, unnamed town on the outskirts of Ontario, Mozaffari manages to create a unique teenage friendship between Lou and Chantal, who ache to run away as soon as possible. Newcomers on the scene, Michaela […]

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