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  Female Film Critics 24/365  Recent Blog Posts

13 MINUTES – Review by Rachel West

Thirteen minutes is all the time four families in a Central Midwest town have to seek shelter from the tornado of the century. Directed by Lindsay Gossling, the disaster drama does a remarkably good job of depicting the massive tornado and its wake of destruction on what is surely a minimal budget. The 13 minutes leading up to the tornado’s touchdown and the immediate aftermath are the strongest elements in the movie. However, the tornado strike alone isn’t a compelling enough reason to watch the personal dramas unfold in the build-up to disaster, making 13 Minutes worth not much more of your time.

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THE HANDMAID’S TALE Season 4 – Review by Susan Granger

With so many new dramatic series, Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale: Season 4 somehow got put on a back-burner, begging to be binge-watched. Lacking its previous topical urgency but retaining its feminist rage, the fourth season begins where the relentless third left off, as heroically tormented June Osbourne (Elisabeth Moss) dispatches a plane filled with 86 children and numerous women fleeing from the tyranny of Gilead into Toronto, Canada.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK October 22, 2021: WOMEN IS LOSERS

The patriarchy is far from dead, but every woman lucky enough to come of age in the United Stats in a post-RBG, post-Roe v. Wade world is likely to find Lissette Feliciano’s earnest, scrappy ’60-set drama Women Is Losers an eye-opening reminder of how much harder things used to be. It also serves as a powerful argument for why it’s so important not to lose the progress we’ve gained.

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Opening October 18 to 24, 2021- Margaret Barton-Fumo reports

The Alliance of Women Film Journalists highlights movies made by and about women. With a vigilant eye toward current releases, we maintain an interactive record of films that are pertinent to our interests. Be they female-made or female-centric productions, they are films that represent a wide range of women’s stories and present complex female characters. As such, they are movies that will most likely be reviewed on AWFJ.org and will qualify for consideration for our annual EDA Awards, celebrating exceptional women working in film behind and in front of the camera.

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Horror Movies and Kids: A Scary Combination — Betsy Bozdech, Brandy McDonnell, Jennifer Merin, Nell Minow and Liz Whittemore comment

Research shows that, on average, kids see horror movies as young as 7 years old. And we’ve all noticed members of the PG crowd at decidedly R-rated movies — in fact, when my daughter was in the second grade, she had multiple classmates who’d seen “It.” It’s not realistic to expect that we can shield kids from scary or gory content forever. And, in fact, it can be counterproductive to prevent children from seeing any kind of conflict, loss, or trauma on screen. Far better to use these moments, when they come, as opportunities to help them through hard stuff in a safe place.

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HALLOWEEN KILLS – Review by Rachel West

One thing Halloween Kills gets right is showing Michael Myers as a brutal, sadistic killing machine. He is utterly relentless when it comes to butchering people in gruesome and blood-soaked ways that will make slasher fans squeal with delight. The first half of the film features some of the franchise’s more-inventive kills before the story gets muddled with too many unmemorable characters, side plots, and drama.

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THE SUBJECT – Review by Liz Braun

Every serious film-goer knows that a movie with a weak start rarely improves. This makes The Subject a huge exception to the rule, as this debut feature from director Lanie Zipoy and writer Chisa Hutchinson has a lacklustre beginning and an unexpectedly powerful second half. The Subject concerns a documentary filmmaker with a guilty conscience. He has become well known and has won awards for a documentary about a Harlem teenager, but it’s a film that includes the death of its subject.

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Rosario Dawson on DOPESICK, the Opioid Crisis and Representing – Leslie Combemale interviews.

Cast as a crusading DEA Agent in Dopestick, Rosario Dawson comments on the opioid crisis: I think this show, and why we’re in DC pushing it, is about the fact that we are not just trying to entertain people. We want this to be something that profoundly changes the game. You could feel it from every single person in the crew, because I have family and friends who have succumbed to the opioid crisis. 2020 had a record high of overdoses, and 75% of those overdoses were opioids. So we need to do something about it, and hopefully the show motivates people to do just that.

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AT THE READY – Review by Sandie Angulo Chen

At the Ready is an easy sell for those who find something uniquely fascinating about the state of Texas, and in particular its border towns. The fact that there are high schools in Texas that offer law enforcement courses and criminal justice clubs in which students compete in mock raids, hostage negotiations, active-shooter situations, and other law enforcement scenarios shouldn’t come as a surprise; it’s Texas. What is surprising, is that the documentary isn’t about an all-White high school in a red swath of the State; it’s about a club at predominantly Hispanic (nearly all the students are cued as Mexican American) Horizon High School in El Paso.

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LARRY FLYNT FOR PRESIDENT – Review by Diane Carson

Highlights in this documentary include Flynt’s recurring legal and theoretical skirmishes in multiple court cases right up to U.S. Supreme Court where he shouted obscenities at the judges. He went several rounds with Jerry Falwell, once appearing to testify in an American flag diaper. He falsely claimed he had a humiliating (and extremely out-of-focus) sex tape of President Ronald Reagan. As encounter after encounter occurs, it’s apparent that the most apt comment comes from Al Goldstein, publisher of Screw, who says, “Flynt only knows he’s alive when he sees himself reflected in the media.”

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