FILMS ABOUT WOMEN OPENING
The Invisible Man
Trapped in a violent, controlling relationship with a wealthy and brilliant scientist, Cecilia Kass (Elizabeth Moss) escapes in the dead of night and disappears into hiding, aided by her sister (Harriet Dyer), their childhood friend (Aldis Hodge), and his teenage daughter (Storm Reid.) But when Cecilia’s abusive ex (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) commits suicide and leaves her a generous portion of his vast fortune, Cecilia suspects his death was a hoax. As a series of eerie coincidences turns lethal, threatening the lives of those she loves, Cecilia’s sanity begins to unravel as she desperately tries to prove that she is being hunted by someone nobody can see.
Find screening info here.
Saint Frances – Written by Kelly O’Sullivan (Opens in NY; Opens in LA March 6)
“Saint Frances,” starring and written by Kelly O’Sullivan, isn’t afraid to dive deep into the many complexities of maturity, pregnancy, and motherhood, especially the details culture tends to gloss over. In other words, there’s a lot of blood in this movie, menstrual and otherwise. Get over it. Bridget (O’Sullivan) is 34 and in a rut, although she’s not particularly unhappy. She takes a job as a nanny to young Frances (Ramona Edith-Williams), the precocious child of Maya (Charin Alvarez) and Annie (Lily Mojekwu). Around the same time, Bridget unexpectedly gets pregnant and undergoes a medical abortion. Along the way, she becomes closer with Frances and Maya, goes through several romantic adventures, and halfheartedly tries to figure out what she wants from adult life. She knows she’s not ready to be a mom right now, but maybe someday? “Saint Frances” presents comedy and drama in equal measure, mostly by depicting uncomfortable truths about womanhood and motherhood. The SXSW award winner, as they say, isn’t afraid to “go there,” and it’s all the better for that. (Rachel Montpelier)
Find screening info here.
Wendy – Written by Eliza Zeitlin and Benh Zeitlin
The classic story of Peter Pan is wildly reimagined in this ragtag epic. Lost on a mysterious island where aging and time have come unglued, Wendy (Tommie Lynn Milazzo) must fight to save her family, her freedom, and the joyous spirit of youth from the deadly peril of growing up.
Find screening info here.
Thappad – Written by Mrunmayee Lagoo and Anubhav Sinha
When you care for someone more than they deserve, do you get hurt more than you deserve? “Thappad” is the story of Amrita (Taapsee Pannu), whose seemingly perfect marriage is shattered when her husband slaps her in front of a group of people at an office party. But is one slap enough to question what a relationship stands for?
Blood on Her Name (Also Available on VOD)
Leigh (Bethany Anne Lind) finds herself in the aftermath of a death on her property and the escalating consequences and reactions that unfold as she struggles to keep her son safe, her livelihood secure, and the dueling influences of her father and the deceased’s girlfriend at bay.
Disappearance at Clifton Hill (Also Available on VOD)
Following the death of her mother, Abby (Tuppence Middleton), a troubled young woman with a checkered past, returns to her hometown of Niagara Falls and the dilapidated motel her family used to run. While there, she finds herself drawn once again into a mystery that has haunted her since childhood: what happened to the young boy she saw being violently abducted in the woods 25 years ago? As Abby sets out to find out the truth, she must confront both a shocking, long-buried conspiracy that runs as deep as the falls themselves, as well as her own inner demons.
FILMS MADE BY WOMEN OPENING
All the Bright Places – Written by Liz Hannah and Jennifer Niven (Available on Netflix)
Based on the internationally bestselling novel by Jennifer Niven, “All the Bright Places” tells the story of Violet Markey (Elle Fanning) and Theodore Finch (Justice Smith), who meet and change each other’s lives forever. As they struggle with the emotional and physical scars of their past, they come together, discovering that even the smallest places and moments can mean something. This compelling drama provides a refreshing and human take on the experience of mental illness, its impact on relationships, as well as the beauty and lasting impact of young love.
Art Paul of Playboy: The Man Behind the Bunny (Documentary) – Directed by Jennifer Hou Kwong
“Art Paul of Playboy: The Man Behind the Bunny” presents the life and lasting impact of Art Paul, founding art director of Playboy magazine, creator of the brand’s iconic bunny logo, and an unsung, iconic artist of our time. Paul’s 30-year tenure at Playboy single-handedly changed the landscape of the two-dimensional magazine and revolutionized the relationship between art and publishing. Through conversations with Paul himself, archival footage and imagery, and interviews with artists, graphic designers, art directors, and former Playboy executives who worked with him, “Art Paul of Playboy: The Man Behind the Bunny” reveals the life and accomplishments of a legendary art director, acclaimed artist, and inspiring human being.
Queen Sono (Premieres February 28 on Netflix)
“Queen Sono’s” titular character, played by Pearl Thusi, lives a double life. She’s a talented, high-powered secret agent, but — since she has to hide that from her loved ones — most of her friends and family think she’s aimless and aloof. Queen’s profession takes her all over Africa, and mostly involves gathering intel on foreign white billionaires who deal arms to radical groups across the continent. “Queen Sono” looks like, and is, an expensive soap opera. Yet its setting and characters imbue it with extra depth. Queen’s job, not to mention life in general in South Africa, is haunted by the history of apartheid. She’s living in the shadow of her revolutionary mother, Safiya Sono, a revered South African hero who was assassinated when Queen was a young girl. Discussions about the lasting impact of colonialism, corruption, the possibility of morality and violence ever coinciding, war crimes and those who inflict them, and who gets to “fix” Africa’s problems also frequently come into play throughout the series. (RM)
Unstoppable (Premieres February 28 on Netflix)
Three spoiled girls in their 20s from Mexico City — Rocío (Bárbara López,) a neurosurgeon crumbling under her father’s pressure, Vera (Tessa Ia,) a fashion blogger who is trying to get away from a codependent relationship and work fallout, and Carlota (Lucía Uribe,) a frustrated poet who is struggling to find her voice — embark on a trip to get away from their First World problems. A fourth woman, Marcela (Coty Camacho,) crosses their path armed with a gun and forces them to change direction, leading them in a journey where bad decisions turn even worse, leading them farther from home but closer to themselves.
Taylor Tomlinson: Quarter-Life Crisis (Comedy Special) (Premieres March 3 on Netflix)
Now halfway through her 20s, Taylor Tomlinson is ready to leave her mistakes behind her. Following her Netflix debut on “The Comedy Lineup Part 1,” Taylor talks about working on yourself, realistic relationship goals, and why your 20s are not actually “the best years of your life.”
Devs (Premieres March 5 on FX on Hulu)
A young software engineer, Lily Chan (Sonoya Mizuno), investigates the secret development division of her employer, a cutting-edge tech company based in Silicon Valley, which she believes is behind the murder of her boyfriend.
1275 Days (Documentary) – Directed by Carlye Rubin and Katie Green (VOD, March 3)
Black Christmas – Directed by Sophia Takal; Written by Sophia Takal and April Wolfe (VOD, March 3)
The Furies (VOD, March 3)
I Am Human (Documentary) – Directed by Taryn Southern and Elena Gaby (VOD, March 3)
Playmobil: The Movie (VOD, March 3)
Queen & Slim – Directed by Melina Matsoukas; Written by Lena Waithe (VOD, March 3)
WOMEN AND HOLLYWOOD IN THE NEWS
Weinstein’s Guilty, But Hollywood’s Reckoning Isn’t Over (The Hollywood Reporter)
Five things that have changed in Hollywood since the Weinstein case broke (Los Angeles Times)
HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE BLOG
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Quote of the Day: “Mixed-ish” Showrunner Karin Gist on How TV Contributes to Black History
Toronto’s Female Eye Film Fest Will Celebrate International Women’s Day With Four Days of Films
Note: All descriptions are from press materials, unless otherwise noted.
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