Darren Aronofsky’s Mother! Proves To Polarize With Its Ambiguity

So many things to say about Darren Aronofsky’s new film, Mother!. First, I want to express that I really liked it. It’s scary, intense, emotional, frenetic, and ambiguous, which I think might be its greatest strength. For most of the film, it has rising and falling tension, but never becomes more than what the average […]

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Podcast: Where Roommates Predict The Emmys And Review IT

The world of film takes a backseat for part of this podcast as roommates Al Robinson and Julia Lee Bertram give us their take on the main Emmys category predictions – and we can compare the choices with those over at ADTV. Al and Julia then discuss their recent viewing of IT. What are your […]

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Masterpiece Memo: Maya Deren’s Meshes Of The Afternoon

If I were female, Maya Deren would be my heroine for all time. Scratch that, the pioneer’s legacy in the film world is a landmark of inspiration and adoration for all, regardless of gender, of occupation, of time. Deren’s imprint on the history of cinema is likely too vast and layered to do it justice […]

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Film Honors: 1998

My own personal choices for the year. They reflect not just necessarily what I think is the best or essential cinema, but perhaps resonate with me or inspire, both at the time, and still today. Subject to alter choices if new viewings are worthy enough. Other published Film Honors posts can be found at the […]

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‘I’m Not Ashamed’ Review: Pandering For Jesus (And Columbine)

On April 20, 1999, two high school seniors, Eric Harris and Dyland Klebold, opened fire on the grounds of Columbine High School, killing twelve students and one teacher, in addition to injuring twenty-one students as a few tried to escape the chaos happening in real-time, before they turned the gun on themselves. The attack is […]

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Woo L.A. Podcast # 8 – Goodbye Summer Cinema, Hello Fall Films

I sit out podcast number 8 with prior film-related engagements – and looks like I missed a 3 hour epic. The line-up itself is impressive, with regular host Al joined by his buddies Julia and Eric, with semi-regulars Jonathan, Joel, and Daniel along for the ride. It is a change of season of course, sun […]

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Why It Is Important To Have A Femme Filmmakers Festival

I recently began writing my first screenplay. My story, which centers on a male protagonist, is not only something I love to tell, but I’ve never had more fun writing anything in my life… that was, until I started developing the main female protagonist. I approached her first scene-stealing moment filled with excitement, but almost […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Roll Of Honor

To close this magnificent #FemmeFilmFest I have assembled a small jury of film-lovers to honor a select few of these outstanding new short films. There are 5 of us in the jury, who will contest on the official selection and come to a (very difficult) decision as the top merit in each of the 10 […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Day Ten Program

Femme Filmmakers Festival — Day Ten Program — Sunday 10th September 2017 And there we have it. The final day of the Femme Filmmakers Festival has arrived – too soon, like a brilliant holiday that is almost over. These female filmmakers and their movies have thrilled me during these ten days – and I know […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Day Nine Program

Femme Filmmakers Festival — Day Nine Program — Saturday 9th September 2017 Well here we are at the penultimate of the Femme Filmmakers Festival, and I won’t lie, I am pretty broken up about it. But that wont halt my enthusiasm and excitement for these female filmmakers. It is, of course, Directors’ Weekend too, and […]

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Watch: Rachel Israel’s Short Film Keep the Change

A representation of reality with which too few of us are familiar, Rachel Israel’s Keep the Change is a beautiful, earnest depiction of blossoming love. In miniature format, and with an unconventional choice in protagonists, Israel crafts an emotional sculpture on the screen, not merely a flat rendering of romantic tropes but a complex, surprising […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Day Eight Program

Femme Filmmakers Festival — Day Eight Program — Friday 8th September 2017 Day Eight of the Femme Filmmakers Festival sees the first day of the Directors’ Weekend with three films from the legendary Agnès Varda. Two features coming Saturday and Sunday, and a 30 minute short coming today. Don’t forget you can hit the links […]

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Billimarie Robinson Talks Filmmaking, Box-Heads, And Being Multiracial

There’s an earnest, smart filmmaking brain in the young head of Billimarie Robinson, whose diverse short films over the years have perhaps allowed her to carry the weight of the world on her shoulders through creative expression. When we first interacted a couple of years ago, having seen and reviewed Corrugated Hearts, I swore to myself […]

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Watch: Alex Burunova’s Short Film Lonely Planet

A single travel writer undergoes a personal conflict on an unexpectedly extended stay in Barcelona in Alex Burunova’s Lonely Planet. A young American woman long estranged from her home country, and from any close source of immediate human affection, engages in a romantic encounter with a disarming local – they are of similar age and […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Day Seven Program

Femme Filmmakers Festival — Day Seven Program — Thursday 7th September 2017 Women’s rights are the direct subject of one of the feature films coming in Day Seven of the Femme Filmmakers Festival. And a smart, young filmmaker has two short films in the selection, and we had a hefty chat about many aspects of […]

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Young Filmmaker Sofija Sztepanov Talks Personal Experiences, Short Films, And Tinder

Talented 24 year-old filmmaker Sofija Sztepanov appears to have a humble yet dynamic perspective on her corner of the film world. There is also an excitement about the Femme Filmmakers Festival from her, as we discuss, in a thankfully encouraging manner, the online format of film watching and publicity. It doesn’t take long, by definition, to […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Day Six Program

Femme Filmmakers Festival — Day Six Program — Wednesday 6th September 2017 Welcome to the second half of the Femme Filmmakers Festival. Day Six has a mixed bag of tricks once again of the short and feature variety. We venture to New Zealand and France for the feature films, women directors with a gentle, loving, […]

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Watch: Margaret Tait’s 4 Minutes Of ‘A Portrait of Ga’

This four-minute portrait of the filmmaker’s mother combines the texture of 1970s-color-saturated found footage with an oddly avant-garde structure. The editing rhythms are distinctly recognizable for anyone who has watched 70s home movies; the Kodak would often linger and jerk-pan for about twenty seconds, then (because the film ran out, because only so much could […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Day Five Program

Femme Filmmakers Festival — Day Five Program — Tuesday 5th September 2017 Among the recommended shorts and features on Day Five of the Femme Filmmakers Festival, we take a trip to Brazil for one of the most under-rated movies of the last decade. As we approach the half-way point of the #FemmeFilmFest, why not share […]

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