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Movies

Rebecca Thomas’s debut feature Electrick Children is a crackling, captivating film that’s equal parts allegory and acid trip. At the center of the story is Rachel (Julia Garner), an inquisitive and rebellious teenager living in the mid-nineties. Julia has been raised by a fundamentalist Mormon family, living on a compound in Utah. On the occasion of her fifteenth birthday, Rachel is asked by her father and church leader (Billy Zane) to begin recording religious testimonies using an old-school cassette tape player. Rachel is fascinated by...

Is it possible to be addicted to science? Lauduree (Perla Haney-Jardine), of Jenny Deller's Future Weather, would have to say yes. It's a story we've seen in the likes of Little Birds, and Hick: bored teenage girls victim of small towns and poor parenting succumb to vice. For the former it's boys and glamour, but not for Lauduree. Amidst her disappearing Mother (Marin Ireland) and beer-slingin' Grandma (Amy Madigan), rises a learned gal with a passion for fighting pollution. Forget drugs and sex, when Lauduree...
There has been a whole lot of buzz since Sunday night’s Oscars. Several websites, interviews, and news sources have expressed outrage over Seth MacFarlane’s sexist comments and his now infamous boob song. (Thanks Seth, I can’t get that stupid, douchey song out of my head.) I guess he made his point if everyone can’t stop talking about him. But one of the most outrageous scandals from the Oscars is the infamous Onion tweet calling the cutest kid in Hollywood, Quvenzhané Wallis, a cunt. Totally appropriate, right? Listen,...

I’ve seen most of the nominated films, watched the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards, and now the pressure is on for The Academy Awards on Sunday. This year’s nominees are filled with phenomenal women with diverse ages, looks, and levels of experience in the business. The category that is perhaps the most conflicting for me is Best Actress. Who do we root for: 9-year-old Quvenzhané Wallis, 86 year old Emmanuelle Riva, up-and-comer Jennifer Lawrence, Bin Laden headhunter Jessica Chastain, or two-time nominee Naomi Watts? My...

The ballots have closed on this year’s Academy Awards, but one thing for sure is that the winner of Best Director is definitely going to be a man. Again. In order to raise awareness about the gender imbalance in Hollywood, peeps over at Indiewire put out this video to remind everyone that some pretty awesome lady-produced movies out that deserve another look. This is the second year they have made a vid to raise awareness and promote a more gender equal industry. Side note—only four women...

  The titular character in this haunting film by Somersault director Cate Shortland is the 14-year-old daughter of a high-ranking Nazi official. When Allied forces inter her parents in their sweep through Germany as World War II comes to a close, Lore (Saskia Rosendahl) is left to care for her four much-younger siblings, including a baby. So she leads them on a trek through her devastated country to find safety at their grandmother’s house. While Nazi Youth aren’t the highest on the world’s sympathy list, this...
  Academy Award-winning documentarian Freida Mock’s new film Anita premiered at Sundance on Saturday, January 19. The film revolves around one of the most famous senate hearings of the late twentieth century, in which attorney Anita Hill accused Justice Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment. Over twenty years later, it's easy to forget the controversy of the Thomas  hearings; I was totally unprepared for the gale-force emotions that came from watching them all over again. My history in the workplace led me to a take a personal interest...

Almost 15 years after his award-winning breakthrough film, La Ciudad, writer/director David Riker once again examines the lives of undocumented immigrants, this time from an unusual point of view: that of a poor, white, single mother. Ashley (Abbie Cornish) is desperate to win back custody of her young son, who is in foster care. After losing her job at an Austin supermarket, she joins her truck-driving father (Will Patton) for a brief road trip and discovers why he suddenly has a wallet full of hundred-dollar...

It's safe to say that here in the good ol' U.S. of A, we're fortunate enough to be able to choose our own spouses (for the most part). The single woman has become not just a common and accepted archetype, but at times a symbol of power. There are various cultures around the world that still uphold the concept of arranged marriages, the Jewish Haredi community being one of them. Rama Brushtein directs Fill the Void, a telling Israeli drama of the eighteen-year-old Shira Mendelman...
Sundance 2013 brought the lady goods in a big way. Fifty percent of the festival's featured films were directed by female directors this year, a stunning leap to full parity for the first time ever at the festival, and a miraculous chasm jumper when compared with the reported disparity in Hollywood (only seven percent of directors registered with the director’s guild are female).  But we’ll come back to that some other day. One of the best female stories of this year's festival was artist Noriko Shinohara’s (aka “Cutie”) ,...