After years as an apprentice, Alice finally has a chance to prove herself as a mechanic. But can she succeed as the only woman working on an all male crew? Directed by Lucie Borleteau. Screenplay by Borleteau in collaboration with Clara Bourreau. (JLH: 4.5/5) Rendez Vous with French Cinema (NYC 2015) “Alice” (Ariane Labed) has… Continue reading FIDELIO, ALICE’S ODYSSEY


Opens Friday in NYC. Review coming soon…


Review of Treading Water by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky “We all have our little quirks,” declares therapist “Catherine,” (Carrie-Anne Moss) “some are physical, some are psychological. And it is those quirks that make us unique.” Sweet comedy/drama Treading Water tells a classic love story with a modern day twist. Devoid of feuding families or… Continue reading TREADING WATER


Opens Friday in NYC. Review coming soon…


Lovesick Frenchman arrives in NYC. Is he pursuing a real woman or his own version of the American dream? Irritating, exhausting, & poignantly metaphysical. Directed by Armel Hostiou who co-wrote screenplay with Léa Inès Cohen and Vincent Macaigne. (JLH: 4/5) Rendez Vous with French Cinema (NYC 2015) “Vincent” (Vincent Macaigne) loves “Barbara” (Kate Moran), but… Continue reading STUBBORN


New film directed by Melanie Laurent (& co-written with Julie Lambroschini). Seen at NYC’s 2015 Rendez Vous with French Cinema. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Full review coming soon… Photo Credits: Jérôme Plon Q: Does Breathe pass the Bechdel Test? Absolutely!

The Longevity of Mae Whitman: International Women’s Day

By Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky After venturing out to see The Duff for the second time, I have come to the realization that actress Mae Whitman has been a permanent fixture in the background of my 22-year-old life. As this week marks International Women’s Day, Whitman should be recognized for her outstanding acting in… Continue reading The Longevity of Mae Whitman: International Women’s Day

‘Fifty Shades’ Passes $500 Million Mark

By Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky As Fifty Shades of Grey passes the $500,000 mark at the box office, audiences continue to flood the theaters despite the 25% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Why? For many, curiosity is key and the wonder of how such a steamy, erotic book could possibly be displayed on the… Continue reading ‘Fifty Shades’ Passes $500 Million Mark


A second feature from Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell–the South African couple who received an Oscar nomination in 2010 in the Best Adapted Screenplay category for their come-out-of left-field special effects extravaganza District 9–is now playing in worldwide IMAX theatres. Here are two reviews–from Jan and from Brigid–across the generations. Review of Chappie  by Managing Editor Jan Lisa Huttner Well knock me… Continue reading CHAPPIE


A view from two generations 🙂 October Gale by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky Ruba Nadda’s romance/thriller tells the story of widowed “Helen” (Patricia Clarkson) and the hunky fugitive who washes up at her isolated coastal cabin. As she and “Will” (Scott Speedman) get to know each other, a brewing storm causes an unexpected and… Continue reading OCTOBER GALE

3/5/15: Art & Activism

This is the Title Page for the PowerPoint presentation I used when I spoke at John Jay College of Criminal Justice tonight in their International Women’s Day program on “Sexual Assault on Campuses.” I recorded it, so I should have the transcript back in a couple of days. If you would like a copy, just… Continue reading 3/5/15: Art & Activism


Margita Gosheva stars as “Nadezhda” in this Bulgarian stunner about a teacher’s harrowing fall from grace. Co-Written/Co-Directed by Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov. Not yet seen by Rich. (JLH: 4.5/5) ************************* When we first meet “Nadezhda” (Margita Gosheva), she is in her comfort zone at the front of a classroom. Standing at the blackboard, Nade is… Continue reading THE LESSON


Review of My Way  by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky Directors Dominique Mollee and Vinny Sisson document the eventful road trip of The Rebekah Starr Band as they travel from rural Pennsylvania to the Sunset Strip. Desperate to become a successful rock-and-roll musician, lead singer “Rebekah” packs up her life in small-town Kittanning and hits the… Continue reading MY WAY

Oscar 2015: Moving On…

Since moving to Brooklyn in late 2012, I have made a personal commitment to see EVERY film opening in NYC that was either written &/or directed by a woman filmmaker. In fact, the number is enormous either written &/or directed by a woman filmmaker is enormous (typically four or so every week, and one week… Continue reading Oscar 2015: Moving On…

Categorized as zPennyRants


First Feature by writer/director Sydney Freeland takes a sincere look at the problems of young people on a Navajo Reservation in Arizona. Here are two reviews–from Jan and from Brigid–across the generations. ************************* Review of Drunktown’s Finest  by Managing Editor Jan Lisa Huttner Writer/Director Sydney Freeland promises more than actually delivered in her first feature-length film, following… Continue reading DRUNKTOWN’S FINEST


Terrific new film by Nikki Caro captures the importance of family and community in the unlikely rise of a high school running team. Kevin Costner plays a coach who thinks he has hit bottom… only to learn see himself through a whole new lens. (BKP: 5/5) ******************************** Review of McFarland, USA by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky… Continue reading McFARLAND, USA

Women’s Work

Excellent program at the Film Society of Lincoln Center in honor of Black History Month. Author Carolivia Herron with filmmaker Ayoka Chenzira Photo Credit: Jan Lisa Huttner (2/13/15)

Categorized as zJan's News


What I saw and who I met at the 2015 Athena Film Festival…


For advocates of women filmmakers, the arrival of Fifty Shades of Grey should be a day of celebration. Here at last is a big budget film with a female heroine that was directed by a woman (Sam Taylor-Johnson!) written by a woman (Kelly Marcel!), and based on a best-selling novel by a woman (E.L. James!). Fifty Shades of Grey has… Continue reading FIFTY SHADES OF GREY


Full Title = Kingsman: The Secret Service A throwback to the mid-60s when Sean Connery made James Bond movies so much fun to watch. Colin Firth is terrific as “Galahad”–in his best “shaken not stirred” mode–teaching young “Eggsy Unwin” (Taron Egerton) the tricks of his trade. With help from Michael Caine in the M role,… Continue reading KINGSMAN


Swirling melodrama from China in which two sets of star-crossed lovers play out their fateful trajectories far from home. In the framing story, a young woman flees to Prague after her fiance deserts her. She chooses Prague because that’s where her grandmother–who was an art student in Paris when the Japanese invaded China–ended up living in… Continue reading SOMEWHERE ONLY WE KNOW

NFPW Meets a Member

 NFPW Meet a Member: Jan Lisa Huttner Jan Lisa Huttner is an award-winning American film critic, journalist and activist. She is an outspoken advocate for women artists, particularly in cinema. She works hard to help bring women artists the visibility they deserve. She joined NFPW in Illinois and now lives in New York. She is a… Continue reading NFPW Meets a Member


Opens tomorrow in NYC. Review coming soon.

Categorized as Reviews: #


The Wachowskis’ new sci-fi flick tells the story of Jupiter Jones – daughter of a Russian immigrant, cleaning lady, genetic reincarnation of the queen of the universe. Bored yet? The entirety of Jupiter Ascending is a hodgepodge of fan boy fantasy, cheesy dialogue, and clunky plotlines. The only highlight is the visual effects. Seeing the… Continue reading JUPITER ASCENDING