THE REAGAN SHOW (2017): Review by Amelie Lasker

The Reagan Show–co-directed by Sierra Pettengill–documents President Reagan as he navigates the personal and public tensions of negotiations with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. The filmmakers find a strange humor in their portrayal of Cold War politics. Composed almost completely of footage of Ronald Reagan taken within the White House and of news broadcasts from the… Continue reading THE REAGAN SHOW (2017): Review by Amelie Lasker


Written and directed by Dave Davidson and Amber Edwards, Vince Giordano: There’s a Future in the Past brings us jazz musician Vince Giordano, the dedicated and eclectically gathered members of his band the Night Hawks, and the strange and magical corner of New York’s jazz world they influence. Giordano’s interest is in 1920s and 30s… Continue reading VINCE GIORDANO: THERE’S A FUTURE IN THE PAST


From filmmaker and activist Crystal Emery, Black Women In Medicine highlights the experiences of a number of successful black women in the medical field, and it also suggests solutions to the challenges facing young black women entering medical careers today. Emery assembles an impressive array of interviewees, with the likes of Dr. Claudia L. Thomas,… Continue reading BLACK WOMEN IN MEDICINE


In a tender reimagining of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s The Little Prince, director Mark Osborne and writers Irena Brignull and Bob Persichetti bring us an entirely new protagonist, a “Little Girl” (voiced by Mackenzie Foy), who is captivated by the Little Prince’s classic tale. As the Little Girl figures the story out for herself, Saint-Exupéry’s poignant… Continue reading THE LITTLE PRINCE


Directed by Henry Just and Ariel Schulman and written by Christopher Landon and Barbara Marshall, Viral’s horror plays on the very real paranoia that sets in when discussion of new infectious diseases take over the news. When a parasitic infection takes over the United States, causing apocalyptic chaos, “Emma” (Sofia Black-D’Elia) and her sister “Stacey”… Continue reading VIRAL


I don’t know what it’s like to have grown up with the original Ghostbusters, but I do know what it’s like to love a movie for its pure fun and to take comfort in going back to it. To me, that feeling explains the excitement surrounding Paul Feig’s 2016 Ghostbusters, a fittingly zany new story… Continue reading GHOSTBUSTERS Boston


Based on the play by Luigi Pirandello, L’Attesa (The Wait), directed by Piero Messina, and co-written by Giacomo Bendotti, Ilaria Macchia, and Andrea Paolo Massara, ventures into the most disorienting aspects of mourning. When “Jeanne” (Lou de Laâge) flies to Sicily to visit her boyfriend “Guiseppe” (Giovanni Anzaldo), his mysterious absence exacerbates her fears of… Continue reading L’ATTESA


Akerman says in one of her interviews, “I always say that a good fiction film includes some documentary and vice versa. Just by the framing. As soon as you frame something it’s fiction.” Chantal Akerman’s films belong to six decades and at least three transatlantic cities. They capture the incredible range of Akerman’s own experience… Continue reading I DON’T BELONG ANYWHERE


Directed and adapted by Japanese filmmaker Naomi Kawase, Sweet Bean tells the story of a pancake shop, its caretaker “Sentaro” (Masatoshi Nagase), and of the people who find refuge there. When elderly “Tokue” (the absolutely charming Kirin Kiki) offers her expertise at making the bean paste for Sentaro’s pancake confections, the caretaker realizes what her… Continue reading SWEET BEAN


In 1968, when Sony made the first portable video camera available to the public, a number of ambitious young artists and journalists came together to see what they could make of this new medium. David Cort and Parry Teasdale founded a group of filmmakers who pioneered the genre of broadcast journalism, obtaining grants from television… Continue reading HERE COME THE VIDEOFREEX


Director Wilson Yip and screenwriters Tai-Li Chan, Lai-yin Leung, and Edmond Wong have created the third chapter of the Ip Man series, paying tribute to master martial artist and teacher Yip Man. Like the other Ip Man movies, the third is heavy on action and speed. A number of high-stakes subplots concern the future of… Continue reading IP MAN 3


Writers Jean-Claude Carrière, Caroline Deruas-Garrel, Arlette Langman, and Philippe Garrel illustrate a sentimental and hilariously complicated romance. Casually set against Parisian architecture and in soft black-and-white, director Philippe Garrel crafts In the Shadow of Women beautifully. “Pierre” (Stanislas Merhar) and “Manon” (Clotilde Courau) seem to be having trouble with both their artistic ambitions and their… Continue reading IN THE SHADOW OF WOMEN


When Jimmy Ellis tried to establish a singing career in 1970s Hollywood, agents and producers told him he sounded too much like Elvis to go anywhere. Meanwhile novelist Gail Brewer Giorgio was writing a story about a fictional musician, “Orion,” who was so successful he had to fake his own death to escape his suffocating… Continue reading ORION: THE MAN WHO WOULD BE KING


In The Summer of Sangailé’s colorfully-lit series of lazy day scenes and playful original soundtrack, Lithuanian filmmaker Alante Kavaite invokes gracefully, if a little simply, the feeling of the teenage summer. Lanky, serious “Sangailé” (Julija Steponaityte) is watching the airplane show at a summer fair, fascinated but too afraid of her vertigo to try herself.… Continue reading THE SUMMER OF SANGAILE


Casa Grande presents the Cavalcanti family, once part of Rio de Janeiro’s elite, but now running out of money fast. Father “Hugo” (Marcello Novaes) vigilantly denies their decline. His insistence on his family’s both luxurious and honorable lifestyle quickly reveals that the financial stability behind his elitism drawing thin. Mother “Sonia” (Suzana Pires) tries to… Continue reading CASA GRANDE


Making Rounds follows cardiologists Valentin Fuster and Herschel Sklaroff as they visit patients at bedside, showing young doctors how to diagnose patients’ illnesses simply by listening to them. Fuster and Sklaroff are working to utilize these techniques to combat doctors’ common habits of resorting to expensive, technologically-advanced tests, which can often be inaccurate. One of… Continue reading MAKING ROUNDS


Artist and musician Laurie Anderson’s Heart of a Dog is like a collection of journal entries, or a visual record of Anderson’s dreams. Anderson’s own memories and philosophical musings, often deliberately indistinguishable from each other, overlay a collection of images that mirror what Anderson might see in her life: details of Anderson’s favorite places, news… Continue reading HEART OF A DOG


Directed by Sean Garrity and written by Jason Sherman and Kate Melville, After the Ball is a Cinderella story reimagined, as a light romantic comedy in the corporate fashion world. Fashion school graduate “Kate” (Portia Doubleday) starts her career working for her father “Lee” (Chris Noth) at his retail company Kassell. Kate, hoping to become… Continue reading AFTER THE BALL


Freida Lee Mock’s documentary Anita tells the story of Anita Hill, law professor and civil rights activist. While then-Judge Clarence Thomas was being considered to be a U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Hill spoke up about his sexual harassment of her when she worked for him. Since then, Hill has worked to spread awareness about sexual… Continue reading ANITA B

An Elizabeth Bishop Moment

“The still explosions on the rocks, the lichens, grow by spreading, gray, concentric shocks. They have arranged to meet the rings around the moon, although within our memories they have not changed.   And since the heavens will attend as long on us, you’ve been, dear friend, precipitate and pragmatical; and look what happens. For… Continue reading An Elizabeth Bishop Moment