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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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: 1999

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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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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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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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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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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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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Directors’ Weekend Catch-Up: The Beguiled

Sofia Coppola’s latest feature, The Beguiled, carries the theme of loneliness, which was present in her previous work like The Virgin Suicides and Lost In Translation, due to the physical isolation that the main characters feel. However, what makes The Beguiled far different from those two films is how it serves as a pastiche of […]

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Femme Filmmakers Festival 2017: Day Four Program

Welcome to Day Four of the Femme Filmmakers Festival, and it shows no sign of slowing down. Today’s showings include a brand new retro-comedy-horror, a documentary on a Middle-East singing contest, as well as the oldest film at the festival. One female filmmaker has the honor of having 2 of her short films in the […]

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Welcome to The Bling Ring Generation

Originally published over at On The Screen Reviews Before Hollywood discovered the benefit of locking their doors when leaving town, a group of gutsy, celebrity-obsessed high schoolers ransacked the homes of Paris Hilton, Rachel Bilson, Orlando Bloom, and Lindsey Lohan…to name a few. And they posted their  designer booty on Facebook feeling the temporary fulfillment […]

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Maren Ade’s Latest Film Toni Erdmann Is Both Long And Alluring

When the movie Toni Erdmann entered our lives last May we assumed without agenda this was about a father’s relationship with his (grown-up) daughter. Which it kind of is, but more than that it turns out to be about a daughter, and her relationship with her (juvenile) father. This is not exactly a devastating plot […]

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Lost in Translation: Visual Appreciation

  “I just don’t know what I’m supposed to be.”  In her sophomore smash hit, Sofia Coppola introduces us to a familiar world within the realms of loneliness and isolation. Lost in Translation revolves around Bob Harris (Bill Murray) who’s experiencing a mid-life crisis in Tokyo while filming a commercial advertising a whiskey for $2 million when he […]

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Genre Blast: Sports – Win or Lose, It’s All in the Game

A majority of us have never effectively played more than two or three sports and likely never go out of our way to watch them other than passively accepting what we are fed over the television. So how do films about sports accomplish the unusual task of entertaining audiences who may never have played or […]

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The David Fincher Films Ranked: 5 – 1

Let me quickly say before you scroll off into the ranked David Fincher wilderness, the top five as the final results were counted was so, so close, the order of the final list could have been a little different very easily. I suspect there will be equal measures of jubilation and heartbreak here. Without further ado, […]

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The David Fincher Films Ranked: 10 – 6

Thanks to those involved in voting for the Directors’ Weekend poll. Clearly, the realm established by filmmaker David Fincher has certainly created a huge fanbase – I know some of you unashamedly declare him as your favorite of the modern era, or indeed all time. I know one guy who does not like any of […]

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