Review – ‘Judas and the Black Messiah’

“What would you tell your son about what you did then?” This question is asked of LaKeith Stanfield’s William O’Neal in the opening scene of Shaka King’s newest film ‘Judas and the Black Messiah,’ but it could just as easily be directed at the audience, asked to reflect on what role we’ve all played in our current …

Review – ‘Red Dot’

Alain Darborg’s Red Dot offers everything you would expect from a survival thriller but struggles to bring anything new to the table.  Netflix’s first-offering of an original Swedish-language feature brings us to the vast snowy landscapes of the Swedish countryside, accompanied by young, married couple Nadja (Nanna Blondell) and David (Anastasios Soulis). Their marriage is …

Review – ‘The Nest’

Jude Law as “Rory” and Carrie Coon as “Allison” in Sean Durkin’s THE NEST. Courtesy of IFC Films. An IFC Films Release. Sean Durkin’s sophomore film, ‘The Nest’ is an outstanding drama that often feels like it wants to dip its toes so desperately into thriller territory. Nine years ago, his first film ‘Martha Marcy …

Netflix Review – ‘Rebecca’

Rebecca: Lily James as Mrs. de Winter, Cr. KERRY BROWN/NETFLIX Ben Wheatley is an interesting director to say the least. His work, stylistically strong, spans broad genres and is often met with well-deserved critical acclaim. They aren’t usually targeted at a broader audience so it was surprising to find out his next project was Rebecca, …

TIFF20 Review – ‘Pieces Of A Woman’

Premiering at Venice Film Festival earlier this month, where Vanessa Kirby just won the award for best actress, ‘Pieces of a Woman’ kicks off its harrowing story with an incredibly long one take opening sequence wherein Martha (Kirby) and Shawn (LaBeouf) see their planned home birth end tragically. What follows is a melodramatic postpartum period, …

TIFF20 Review – ‘Monday’

One of the more mainstream titles TIFF20 has to offer, is Argyris Papadimitropoulos’ Monday, in which Marvel Studios’ very own Winter Soldier, Sebastian Stan, and Denise Gough play two thirtysomething Americans living their best life in Athens. As soon as they meet on a wild party weekend, sparks go flying. All good things come to …

TIFF20 Review – ‘Under The Open Sky’

TIFF20’s fourth film on our schedule is the incredibly beautiful Japanese feature ‘Under The Open Sky’ (originally titled ‘Subarashiki Sekai’). Inspired by Mr. Ryuko Saki’s novel ‘Mibuncho’ (translated ‘Inmate Files’), director Nishikawa Miwa for the first time ever uses someone else’s story to create one that’s inspired by ex-convicts who try to adapt to a …

TIFF20 Review – ‘Holler’

Our second day – and third film – of TIFF20 is reserved for Nicole Riegel’s debut feature ‘Holler’. Riegel, winner of Palm Springs Festival’s “Directors to Watch”-award, channels some serious gritty ‘Winter’s Bone’-vibes, including a promising young lead and a look at a small community living far beneath the poverty line, trying to survive in …

Review – ‘Indigo Valley’

Indigo Valley is Jaclyn Bethany’s debut feature film and tells the story of estranged sisters Louise and Isabella. When Isabella unexpectedly joins Louise and her new husband John on their honeymoon through the wilderness, tensions arise and secrets between all three begin to surface in unpredictable and dangerous ways. Written and directed by Bethany, she …

Review – ‘The Assistant’

In Kitty Green’s narrative debut ‘The Assistant’, we follow one day in the life of Jane (Julia Garner – ‘Ozark’), a recent college graduate and aspiring film producer, who has recently landed her dream job as a junior assistant to a powerful entertainment mogul. Her day is much like any other assistant’s – making coffee, …