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Little Sister has the honor of being one of New Yorker writer Richard Brody’s favorite films of 2016, beating out many of the year’s bigger acclaimed releases, such as Arrival (which is not getting enough love), La La Land (which is getting perhaps too much), and Hidden Figures (which I have not yet seen). Yet Little Sister, the fifth movie by director Zach Clark, hasn’t really made headlines or generated much of a splash in general, aside from fairly uniformly good notices, and was not...
If you thought Selenis Leyva was badass in Orange is The New Black, then you're not ready for her in her newest film Chapter & Verse. Directed by Jamal Joseph, the film takes place in present-day Harlem, New York and follows an ex-con's life after prison — and his new job at a local food pantry with Selenis' character, Yolanda. Selenis co-stars in the film along with Daniel Beaty, Loretta Devine, and Omari Hardwick. The film touches on hot topic issues like gentrification, police brutality, gang violence,...
Courtney has joined Lifetime to star as Kitty Menendez in the new Lifetime movie about the infamous Menendez brothers' 1989 murder of their parents. ABC News says the story had “all the ingredients” to be named the crime of the century: “a murder in Beverly Hills,” which “averages about 2 murders a year." The Menendez family consisted of Jose Menendez, a Cuban immigrant who “made good becoming a corporate chief on both coasts"; the golden-haired Kitty, “an all-American wife and mom"; and the two sons, Eric...
  The Getty Research Institute in LA announced today that they have acquired Joanie 4 Jackie, an archive of DIY feminist short movies and video art, distributed in the ‘90s and ‘00s by indie artist and filmmaker Miranda July. July was active in the Riot Grrrl scene in Portland in the ‘90s and started the project as a “Chainletter Tape” handing out pamphlets asking budding artists and filmmakers to send her their self-made movies. A movie and $5 bought the artists a copy of and inclusion...
With Trump’s Muslim ban and the resulting protests taking place this weekend, you’d be completely forgiven for forgetting about the SAG Awards. But many celebrities who attended turned the occasion into a platform for activism, using their acceptance speeches to advocate for the rights of immigrants and Muslims and, yes, telling us all to go punch some fucking Nazis. Here are the political moments from the SAG Awards that you should pay attention to: 1. Ashton Kutcher’s opening speechHost Ashton Kutcher kicked off the night with...
A principal director on ER, Mimi Leder was surprised when producer Steven Spielberg pulled her aside in 1997 and asked her to direct a $50 million film, The Peacemaker. It would star George Clooney and Nicole Kidman and Spielberg described it as an “action thriller," the type of film women rarely get offered. Although Leder was comfortable behind the camera on ER, directing the show’s famous long shots, she was hesitant to accept the offer. Leder says Spielberg convinced her by pointing out that she directed...
  The full list of Oscar nominees was announced this morning, and there’s a lot of good and bad things to say about them. Unsurprisingly, La La Land swept with 14 nominations, because white people in Hollywood love movies about white people in Hollywood. But the other subject making headlines today is just how many nominations there are for people of color: Moonlight received 8 nominations, while Fences received 4 and Hidden Figures received 3. Here they are: Ruth Negga (Loving) for Best ActressDenzel Washington (Fences) for...
Spoiler Alert: Yeah, he did. I just wanted to see a movie with my girlfriend. I was looking for ninety-plus minutes to escape the realities of our recent presidential election and enjoy an American pastime with a side of greasy popcorn. What I did not want, let alone expect, as I sat down to view Tom Ford’s Nocturnal Animals was one hour and 57 minutes of squirming in my seat and continuous reminders of the violence and stigma attached to my identified gender. Don’t get me wrong....
  MA is beautifully surreal experimental film written, directed and performed by choreographer Celia Rowlson-Hall (Pantsuit Nation Flash Mob, GIRLS) that uses gesture and image (no dialogue) to tell the story of one woman’s traumatic pilgrimage of self discovery. Rowlson-Hall invents her very own deeply personal visual language through movement, iconic imagery, and a haunting score (by Brian McOmber) creating a moving and original experience. Think The Virgin Mary goes on a road trip to Las Vegas. At times, the movie feels like a dream, at...
(Rogue One spoilers follow, obviously.) There are countless reviews of Gareth Edwards’ first of the Star Wars anthology films, all variations on comparing it to this Episode or that; but its solitary focus makes for a tale set apart. As the lost piece of an intricate puzzle, Rogue One satisfyingly presses into its rightful place in the series’ universe. Filling in that blank space might never have seemed necessary, but, once you’ve seen it, there’s no denying the richness added. Like a secret ingredient playing up...
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