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Movies

It’s rare in this day and age that a film—specifically a coming-of-age film—stars two young women and doesn't revolve around a man (for future reference, please see The Bechdel test). Booksmart delivers a fresh and relevant take on high school in 2019 and does so with wit, ease, and a whole lot of love. In Olivia Wilde’s directorial debut, the movie centers around brainiac BFFs Molly (Beanie Feldstein, Saoirse Ronan’s loveable sidekick in Lady Bird / Jonah Hill’s cool little sis) and Amy (Kaitlyn Dever, Short Term...
  Mother’s Day may have passed, but we're still celebrating the moms we love from film! Let’s break down some of the best moms from film by zodiac sign to see which mommie dearest exemplifies the traits of each sign.   Aries Stella Payne from How Stella Got Her Groove Back Stella Payne is a single mother who takes a trip to Jamaica with her bestie, only to find love while on vacation. With her successful career on point and heart on fire, Stella resembles the “can do” Aries...
This summer Netflix will be releasing the Spanish language lesbian period drama, Elisa & Marcela. Based on a true story, the film follows Marcela Gracia Ibeas (Greta Fernández) and Elisa Sánchez Loriga (Natalia de Molina). After a fifteen year-long romance that started at their teacher training school, the women wanted to marry. The two women were married by a priest (who assumed they were a heterosexual couple) in 1901 after Marcela took on the persona of a man and went by the name “Mario Sánchez.” Directed...
Charlie Says Directed by Mary Harron Out May 10  Director Mary Harron and writer Guinevere Turner make a valiant attempt to turn the typical Charles Manson narrative on its head with Charlie Says, but they can’t quite shake the lurid allure of Spahn Ranch. Merritt Wever plays Karlene Faith, a grad student who meets Leslie Van Houten, Susan Atkins, and Patricia Krenwinkel in 1972 while leading a feminist reading group at the prison where the three “Manson girls” are incarcerated. Getting to know them forces Karlene to reexamine...
Diane is the sort of movie that Douglas Sirk would have directed in the 1950s—a “women’s picture,” so to speak, that centers on a female character and her trials and tribulations, often in a domestic context. (A Simple Favor is another recent movie that left a similar impression on me.) While Diane’s writer-director Kent Jones works in a more muted manner than the colorful, dizzying heights of Sirk-ian melodrama, the bones of that kind of story are still there (as are retro flourishes like the slow cross-fade effect...
Get ready to call your grandma and tell her how much you love her after watching The Farewell trailer, where funny-girl Awkwafina shows off her serious acting chops. The film, coming out July 12th, is written AND directed by Asian-American female filmmaker Lulu Wang, whose IRL grandma inspired the film. The Farewell tells the story of Billi’s (Awkwafina) Chinese grandmother dying of lung cancer. The thing is, the family decides not to tell the matriarch, which leaves Billi grappling with the idea of loss, family, and the...
  Ask Dr. RuthDirected by Ryan WhiteOut May 3       Dr. Ruth Westheimer, known lovingly as America’s sex therapist, is almost 91. And it’s possible that there has never been a better time to celebrate her incredible life than right now, when we need some hope (and better sex education) more than ever. The documentary Ask Dr. Ruth oscillates between painful recollections of the educator’s childhood growing up in Europe during the Holocaust, clips from her various television shows and guest appearances, and Westheimer’s reflections now....
  The new Netflix documentary Knock Down the House, set to be released on May 1st, details the stories of four different women who decide to run for Congress in the 2018 midterm elections. The film follows Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Paula Jean Swearengin, Cori Bush, and Amy Vilela in their first ever political campaigns. Watching the film is equal parts thrilling, heartwarming, and frustrating. Running a grassroots campaign is hard work, especially considering the fact that all the women featured are running against deeply entrenched incumbents in...
  Captain Marvel is a joyride. A classic origin story of the best kind, this recent addition in the Marvel Cinematic Universe tells the story of how Vers (Brie Larson), a resident of the Kree Empire, regains piece by piece her memory of life on Earth, her real name (Carol Danvers), her mission, and her chosen family. The movie opens on Hala, the Kree Empire’s capital planet, where Carol spends her days training to control the power she was told the Kree gave her so she can...
  The sky is black, the suburban streets are lit only by sporadic street lights, and your only way home is by your own legs and wits. To some, this would be an inconvenience; to others, it’d be an endangerment. Gender tends to play a role in this distinction. The tensions—and potential terrors— that can permeate girls’ everyday experiences are so ingrained, they are often dismissed. Director Aly Migliori’s third short film, the 10-minute thriller Twist, illuminates the unspoken, the unseen, and the uncertain in the female experience....