Hidden Figures, directed by Theodore (Ted) Melfi and co-written with Allison Schroeder, recounts the inspiring story of three black women who helped NASA advance in the Space Race. Taraji P. Henson leads the impressive cast as Katherine Goble Johnson, the first female mathematician to assist in America’s first orbit of Earth. A triumphant story is brought… Continue reading HIDDEN FIGURES


When a homeless mother-daughter duo get stranded in a small town with a broken down car, they manage to settle down long enough to call “Tiny’s Diner” their home. Based on Annie Weatherwax’s 2014 novel, Katie Holmes’ directorial debut tackles themes of acceptance, desperation … and love in all forms. (BKP: 4.5/5) Review by Managing… Continue reading ALL WE HAD


Bad Santa 2 brings back the alcoholic con artist who masqueraded as a not-so-jolly old St. Nicholas in the 2003 original. Starring a wasted Billy Bob Thornton – implying both connotations of “wasted” – Shauna Jones and her co-writers will make audiences’ stomachs churn with this overly vulgar heist flick. (BKP & GEP: 2/5) Review… Continue reading BAD SANTA 2


Writer/Directors Ricki Stern and Anne Sundberg’s Marathon: The Patriots Day Bombing takes viewers back to Boylston Street, documenting the lives of the families who were impacted by a moment of terror that forever changed the city of Boston, the country and the world. (BKP: 4.5/5) Review by Managing Editor Brigid K. Presecky April 15, 2013:… Continue reading MARATHON: PATRIOT’S DAY BOMBING


Unlike its marketing campaign as a spooky horror film, Christina Hodson’s thriller tells the disturbing story of a mother caring for her paralyzed son in an isolated, snow-covered mansion. Shut In’s the stellar cast of Naomi Watts, Oliver Platt and Jacob Tremblay strengthen a questionable, less-than-thrilling plot that leaves you with questions and very little… Continue reading SHUT IN

37 (Kitty Genovese)

Writer/Director Puk Grasten retells the infamous story of Kitty Genovese, the 28-year-old woman stabbed to death as 37 bystanders watched, listened and failed to intervene. Focusing on a handful of fictional characters, Grasten captures the eerie, stomach-churning atmosphere of the Kew Gardens (Queens) apartment complex on March 13, 1964. (BKP: 4/5) Review By Managing Editor… Continue reading 37 (Kitty Genovese)


Directors Hermal Trivedi and Mohammed Naqvi document the religious and political upheaval of the Red Mosque in Pakistan. For viewers with a limited knowledge on the War on Terror, the subtitled Among the Believers might take an encore viewing to fully comprehend. (BKP: 3.5/5) Review by Managing Editor Brigid K. Presecky Taking a closer look… Continue reading AMONG THE BELIEVERS


Long Way North takes you on an adventure with 14-year-old “Sacha” (Christa Theret) as she bravely searches for her Arctic explorer grandfather. Set in 19th-Century St. Petersburg, Rémi Chayé’s beautifully animated coming-of-age story has enough heart to attract audiences of all ages. (BKP: 4.5/5) Review by Managing Editor Brigid K. Presecky Once upon a December,… Continue reading LONG WAY NORTH


Read Senior Contributor Lesley Coffin’s Q&A with Director Sophie Goodhart HERE. Nick Kroll stars as a struggling singleton in the shadow of his overachieving blind brother (Adam Scott). Writer/Director Sophie Goodhart manages to tell a sweet, funny love story using a common plot device of two guys, a girl … and a lake instead of… Continue reading MY BLIND BROTHER


Alecky Blythe’s stage play hits the big screen, telling the creepy and enthralling story of five murders in Ipswich, England. The clever twist on solving a criminal case – through charming musical numbers – keeps viewers fixated on the screen. (BKP: 4/5) Review by Managing Editor Brigid K. Presecky In a town where frequent solicitors… Continue reading LONDON ROAD


The Seasons in Quincy: Four Portraits of John Berger is a non-linear look at the life of 90-year-old artist, writer and art critic, John Berger. Using the seasons as the backbone of the documentary, these four unique glimpses into his past and present life are equal parts captivating and heartwarming, particularly in Tilda Swinton’s opening… Continue reading THE SEASONS IN QUINCY


When a man loses his wife in a tragic car accident, he finds a grieving partner – and adversary – his mother-in-law. Although Five Nights in Maine leaves questions unanswered, Diane Wiest and David Oyelowo showcase their abilities in writer/director Maris Curran’s feature film debut. (BKP: 3.5/5) Review by Managing Editor Brigid K. Presecky “Sherwin”… Continue reading FIVE NIGHTS IN MAINE


Hitting theaters in the height of the Pokémon Go craze, Nerve perfectly captures the thrill, danger and obsession with modern technology. Emma Roberts and Dave Franco star in the film adaptation of the 2012 novel, following a group of friends as they truth-or-dare their way through a high-stakes online video game. (BKP: 4.5/5) Review by… Continue reading NERVE


Based on the British television sitcom of the same name, Absolutely Fabulous takes you on a fun-filled adventure with international PR guru “Edina Monsoon” (Jennifer Saunders) and her equally-stylish best friend, magazine editor “Patsy Stone” (Joanna Lumley). Although an enjoyable viewing for all audiences, fans of the show (which ran from 1992 to 1995 and… Continue reading ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS


Director Penny Lane creates a humorous, clever and utterly enjoyable documentary about Dr. John Romulus Brinkley’s “discovery” of using goat testicles to cure male impotence. This animated “true story,” set in 1917 Western America, is an uproarious watch from beginning to end. Detailing his peculiar rags-to-riches story, Nuts! will answer questions you never even knew… Continue reading NUTS!


Jillian Elizabeth and Neil Dalal’s documentary enters the world of a spiritual Indian ashram (or monastery, in other cultures) as they capture day-to-day life in Arsha Vidya Gurukalam. While enlightening and informative, watching a lengthy film on meditation may lull you into a peaceful, deep sleep. (BKP: 3/5) Review by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky… Continue reading GURUKULAM


Shonali Bose’s Margarita with a Straw tackles multiple issues through main protagonist, teenage “Laila,” (Kalki Koechelin) an aspiring writer with cerebral palsy. The unique approach to sensitive issues, ranging from disabilities and sexuality to cancer and parenting, is initially intriguing but needs a jolt of energy to keep viewers invested. (BKP: 3/5) Review by Associate… Continue reading MARGARITA WITH A STRAW


Tom Hiddleston stars as an eccentric doctor in this bizarre, brutally boring adaptation of J.G. Ballard’s novel, High-Rise. Amy Jump’s screenplay on social commentary might appeal to fans of science-fiction/horror, but the average moviegoer may miss the “comedy” in this so-called “dark-comedy” entirely. (BKP: 2.5/5) Review by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky There are people… Continue reading HIGH-RISE


Louise Osmond’s Dark Horse is an inspiring story of a Welsh horse’s journey to being a Grand National contender. This feel-good documentary is riveting, on-the-edge-of-your seat enjoyment from start to finish. (BKP: 4.5/5) Review by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky If you haven’t heard of the racehorse “Dream Alliance,” you will be in for a… Continue reading DARK HORSE


Phantom of the Theater is a grand spectacle of color and splash rolled into a bizarre plot of horror and mystery. Screenwriters Yang Mei Yuan, Li Jing Ling and Manfred Wong tell the story of a restored movie house, haunted by the spirits of the people who perished in a theater. Although potentially appealing to… Continue reading PHANTOM OF THE THEATRE


Actor/writer Greg Stuhr’s insight and appreciation for his birthplace, Buffalo, New York, and the Niagara Falls area is featured front and center in The American Side, his collaborative detective drama directed and co-written by Jenna Ricker. Although the material isn’t particularly new and noteworthy here, Stuhr’s passion for this story shines through. (BKP: 3/5) Review… Continue reading THE AMERICAN SIDE


Writers Victoria Arch and Doc Pedrolie create a unique, imaginative and enjoyable story in their romantic thriller, Pali Road. When workaholic “Lily” (Michelle Chen) gets in a car accident, she wakes up with in a completely different version of her life. Set in the beautiful landscape of Hawaii, this familiar tale of “the road not… Continue reading PALI ROAD


Directors Jessica Cleland and Kevin Munroe bring the Ratchet and Clank video game to life in a full-length feature film. Although the cookie-cutter premise of good versus evil is entertaining enough for a (very) young crowd, the 94-minute version of a Saturday morning cartoon may not be worth the ever-increasing price of admission. (BKP: 3/5)… Continue reading RATCHET & CLANK


Zoe Saldana stars as famed musician Nina Simone in the later part of her 70-year life. She drinks, smokes and falls into a vessel of self-destructive behavior. But despite Saldana’s efforts and the remaining – and impressive – supporting cast, Cynthia Mort’s script misses the mark. (BKP 3/5) Review by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky… Continue reading NINA


Writer Catalina Aguilar Mastretta and Director Amanda Maralis team up to tell a sweet, simple story of a brief love affair between unlucky-in-love “Sophie” (Mamie Gummer) and British dreamer “Alex” (Tony Okungbowa). Although the pacing could use a jolt of energy, this human story makes for an enjoyable, pleasantly surprising watch. (BKP: 3.5/5) Review By… Continue reading ECHO PARK


Director Meryl Goldsmith and co-writer/producer Susan Goldsmith attempt to pick apart the science behind SBS (Shaken-Baby Syndrome) and shed a light on wrongly-accused “abusive” parents. As controversial as the subject is, the filmmakers make a purposeful statement: people are villainized in America’s mainstream media. (BKP: 2.5/5) Review by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky SBS, known… Continue reading THE SYNDROME


Be Here Now chronicles the story of Spartacus actor Andy Whitfield and his wife, Vashti, as they journey through his devastating diagnosis of non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. In the hundreds of film reviews I have written for FF2 Media in the past eight years, nothing has ever come close to the experience of watching Lilibet Foster’s inspiring… Continue reading BE HERE NOW


Gayle Kirschenbaum’s documentary is a tragically funny story about her tumultuous relationship with her feisty mother, Mildred Abramowitz Kirschenbaum. The home videos from past and present string together a touching narrative about love and heartbreak between a parent and her child. (BKP: 4/5) Review by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky Gayle Kirschenbaum, the documentarian known… Continue reading LOOK AT US NOW, MOTHER!


Rania Attieh and Daniel Garcia  tell a tale of two Helens of Troy set in present day. With meteor showers, fake babies and floating statues, this film is too artsy to engage cinephiles let alone average viewers. (BKP: 2.5/5) Review by Associate Editor Brigid K. Presecky “Everything is more beautiful because we are doomed. You… Continue reading H.


Like a home video version of Saturday Night Live, this political mockumentary takes many jabs at the conservative right side of politics. The film follows middle-aged married couple Ron and Laura as they try to “take back America” from the evils of liberalism. Although the satire has its humorous moments, the over-the-top depiction of the… Continue reading RON AND LAURA TAKE BACK AMERICA