Jenifer McShane’s documentary Ernie & Joe: Crisis Cops follows San Antonio, Texas police officers Ernie Stevens and Joe Smarro, the leaders of a ten-person mental health unit of the San Antonio police force. Ernie & Joe recounts their efforts to place mental health safety at the forefront of officers minds when handling people in crisis,… Continue reading ‘Ernie & Joe: Crisis Cops’ is Heartbreaking yet Feels Unfinished
Twelve-year-old Otis (Noah Jupe) is becoming a Hollywood star. His dad is a substance-abusing ex-clown with a mean temper. Twenty-two-year-old Otis (Lucas Hedges) has landed himself in rehab after years of excessive alcoholism and anger management issues. This is the biopic of Shia LaBeouf, the kid star of early 2000’s Even Stevens and Transformers fame.… Continue reading ‘Honey Boy’ is an autobiographical treat
Chronicling gift-based cultures around the world and challenging the logic of global capitalism, the film inspires the question: is life about getting or giving? Gift opens 10/18. FF2 review coming soon!
Britt-Marie Was Here directed by Tuva Novotny tracks the life of Britt-Marie (Pernilla August) a 63-year-old housewife faced with the choice of leaving her unfaithful husband for a job as a Little League soccer coach. Endearing and heartwarming, based off of an original novel titled A Man Called Ove, the film stands out as an… Continue reading ‘Britt-Marie Was Here’ Stands out as an Incredibly Relatable Story
Written by Sarah Thorpe and Jeff Buhler, the remake of 1990’s film Jacob’s Ladder tells the story of a veteran at home from war who suffers from hallucinations of hauntings by his dead brother. Having served as a trauma surgeon overseas, Jacob begins treatment for PTSD once he returns home. He begins taking a drug… Continue reading ‘Jacob’s Ladder’ is a Thriller That Falls Flat
Wild Appalachia country holds its secrets. Writer-directors Britt Poulton and Dan Madison Savage dig at those secrets in Them That Follow, a captivating story of a young pastor’s daughter living in the mountains. Mara (Alice Englert) was raised by her father (Walton Goggins) to be faithful, subservient, and modest. She is all of those things,… Continue reading ‘Them That Follow’ Holds onto Every Breath
From IMDb: A teenage girl and her friend run into problems when they plan to leave town. Firecrackers opens 7/12. FF2 review coming soon!
Writer/director Jasmin Mozaffari’s film stands out in an already-strong genre of new coming of age stories. With Firecrackers, set in a desolate, unnamed town on the outskirts of Ontario, Mozaffari manages to create a unique teenage friendship between Lou and Chantal, who ache to run away as soon as possible. Newcomers on the scene, Michaela… Continue reading ‘Firecrackers’ is a Teenage Wonderland Masterpiece
The fight between democracy and militant government has plagued Brazil for decades. The country, originally run by an oligarchy, slowly found themselves fighting for a representative democracy. They filled the streets, rioted, and supported their chosen leader, Lula. But as the years passed, the people became blind to the destructive forces of their past hidden… Continue reading ‘The Edge of Democracy’ tiptoes line of memoir and documentary
Written and directed by partners Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens, Water Makes Us Wet: An Ecosexual Adventure is a documentary about the ecosexual community and our impact on our world today through our destruction of the planet. Annie and Beth are ecosexuals, educators, and activists that travel across California to take a better look at… Continue reading ‘Water Makes Us Wet’ is an underwhelming ecosexual adventure
Anna’s approaching 30, living in her mom’s garden shed, and hanging onto every last memory she has of her late twin brother through the dumb low budget movies they made together that the internet is soon to delete without further payment. However, when her best friend comes home from a glamourous traveling extravaganza, Anna’s hermit… Continue reading ‘Adult Life Skills’ shines a tender light our tumultuous world
Written by Maria Melnik and Bragi F. Schut and directed by Adam Robitel, Escape Room is a psychological thriller that, unfortunately, misses the mark just slightly. (MTP: 3/5)
Directed by Fabien Constant and written by Laura Eason, Here and Now follows the day Vivienne (Sarah Jessica Parker), a famous jazz singer, finds out devastating news that will change her life forever. She finds herself having to question her relationships with her family, friends, and even her random Lyft driver as she grapples with… Continue reading ‘Here and Now’ Peers into a Woman’s Crippling Mind
Written and directed by Maryam Keshavarz, Viper Club is an intimate look into the life of Helen (Susan Sarandon), a mother struggling to stay positive while waiting for news of her son’s safety in the Middle East. Keshavarz manages to keep the mundanity of life engaging as the anxiety bubbles underneath Helen’s calm facade. Edie Falco and Matt Bomer co-star as members of The Viper Club, an organization determined to bring journalists home safely, no matter the cost. Keshavarz crafts a well-thought-out narrative that depicts the complexity of global policy, journalism, and grief. (MTP: 4.5/5)
From IMDb: A biographical drama film about Kurt Josef Waldheim, former UN Secretary General and the controversy of his participation and role in the Nazi regime during WWII. The Waldheim Waltz opens 10/19 in NYC. FF2 review coming soon!
Outstanding rhythmic gymnast Margarita Mamun needs to be the best in order to make it to the Olympic Games. Can she do it? In her gripping documentary Over the Limit, director Marta Prus shines a light on the competitive and intense world of the Russian rhythmic gymnastics team through the eyes of Mamun. MTP: ⅘… Continue reading ‘Over the Limit’ awakens its audience to the tenacity it takes to be an athlete
Alex Honnold dares to be the first person to ever free solo climb Yosemite’s 3,000ft high El Capitan Wall. We follow him as he meticulously plans each move while juggling injury, relationship tensions, and the insane feat of climbing without any ropes to save him from a life-ending fall. Directors Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy… Continue reading ‘Free Solo’ is undeniably captivating
Jaime’s grandmother has just said her last words: “learn how to give a proper blowjob.” Writer and director Becca Gleason opens with those last words as she sets the tone for Jaime (Joey King) and her family as they deal with the drastically different ways each one of them deals with grief in her wonderfully… Continue reading ‘Summer 03’ is a fresh coming of age film from Becca Gleason
In a small East Anglian town in 1959, Florence Green (Emily Mortimer) is determined to open a bookshop despite resistance from elite members of the town. Florence befriends the outcasts of the town in order to find solace amongst the opposition. Based on Penelope Fitzgerald’s renowned novel and directed by Isabel Coixet (known for features… Continue reading ‘The Bookshop’ is aesthetically beautiful but unfortunately boring
In their eye-opening documentary, The Bleeding Edge, critically acclaimed writer/director Kirby Dick and co-writer Amy Ziering shed an important light on America’s corrupt medical industry and the loopholes the FDA will find in order to comply with industry interests. (MTP: 5/5)
Director L. Burner sets out to examine attitudes towards women throughout time, with particular attention to issues in the African-American community. With topics ranging from sexual assault to victim blaming to misogyny in media, The Rise of Eve opens up the discussion in order to start taking steps towards a safer world for women. (MTP: 3/5)
French painter Paul Gauguin embarks on a soul searching journey to find new inspiration in Tahiti. On his quest, he meets and marries the beautiful Tehura, the woman who will become his muse. (MTP: 4/5) Review by FF2 Intern Maiya Pascouche Artist Paul Gauguin is suffocating as an unsuccessful artist in Paris, living… Continue reading ‘Gauguin – Voyage to Tahiti’ paints an intimate look into the artist’s quest to find a muse
The brilliant Debra Granik directs Leave No Trace, a moving look into the life of a father and daughter living in the forests of Portland, Oregon, until a simple mistake must force them to choose between vastly different worlds. Adapted from Peter Rock’s novel My Abandonment, the story captivates its audience the moment the first… Continue reading ‘Leave No Trace’ is a pure work of art
Award-winning filmmaker Lisa Immordino Vreeland directs this documentary — Love, Cecil — about legendary British photographer, artist, and designer Cecil Beaton (best–known to cinephiles for his world on the films Gigi and My Fair Lady). Vreeland’s vibrant doc uses archive footage, images, and interviews with models, artists, and friends alongside narration from Beaton’s own diaries to paint… Continue reading ‘Love, Cecil’ paints a heartfelt picture of the man behind the camera
In Boom for Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquiat, director Sara Driver captures the raw creativity of the world renowned artist Jean-Michel Basquiat before his height of commercial success. Through interviews and period film footage, music, and pictures from the time, Driver paints a portrait of Basquiat pre-fame and before anyone was driven… Continue reading ‘Boom for Real’ transports you into the world of Basquiat
From IMDb: A woman returns to her Orthodox Jewish community that shunned her for her attraction to a female childhood friend. Once back, their passions reignite as they explore the boundaries of faith and sexuality.
In Lucrecia Martel’s film, Zama, based on the novel by Antonio Di Benedetto written in 1956, a Spanish officer of the 18th Century is stuck in Asunción (now Paraguay). Through a non-linear plot structure, Martel tells the story of Don Diego de Zama as he awaits his transfer to Buenos Aires and the obstacles he… Continue reading ‘Zama’ is a waste of Lucrecia Martel’s directorial talent