Opening Dec 6 – 12, 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. Our members are feature writers, columnists and regular contributors to a variety of media outlets and many of us publish regularly on the festival circuit. Our critical voices are widespread and diverse. We invite you to join us in tracking weekly releases of particular interest. And we welcome information about new films that will help us to keep our records updated and our critics alert. Below is a concise list of new releases set for the week of December 6 to 12 that are of particular interest:
- Listening to Kenny G – HBO Max – USA – Documentary directed by Penny Lane. An examination of the most popular instrumentalist of all time, Kenny G, and why he is polarizing to so many.
Tuesday, December 7
- Fatal Distraction – (VOD) – USA – Documentary written and directed by Susan Morgan Cooper. The untold story of the high-profile murder trial of Justin Ross Harris following the death of his toddler son in the hot summer of 2014.
- The Wishing Tree – (VOD) – USA – Drama co-written and directed by Laura Adamo. The story of one woman’s hiking expedition initiated as a quest for perspective, peace, answers and ultimately a way to heal from personal tragedy.
Friday, December 10
- Back to the Outback – Netflix – Australia / USA – Animated film co-directed by Harry Cripps and Clare Knight, with voice acting by Jacki Weaver and Guy Pearce. Tired of being locked in a reptile house where humans gawk at them like they’re monsters, a group of Australia’s deadliest creatures plot a daring escape from their zoo to the Outback.
- Being the Ricardos – Amazon Prime – USA – Biographical drama following Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz as they face a crisis that could end their careers and another that could end their marriage. Starring Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem, written and directed by Aaron Sorkin.
- France – Kino Lorber (Cinemas in NY & LA) – France / Germany / Italy / Belgium – Drama written and directed by Bruno Dumont, starring Léa Seydoux. A celebrity journalist, juggling her busy career and personal life, has her life overturned by a freak car accident.
- The Hating Game – Vertical Entertainment (Cinemas, VOD) – USA – Romantic comedy directed by Peter Hutchings, written by Christina Mengert, adapted from the novel by Sally Thorne. Resolving to achieve professional success without compromising her ethics, Lucy embarks on a ruthless game of one-upmanship against cold and efficient nemesis Joshua, a rivalry that is complicated by her growing attraction to him.
- Joy Womack: The White Swan – Film Movement (Cinemas) – Russia / UK / USA – Female co-directed documentary about Joy Womack’s journey from an American girl from Texas to the first American to graduate from the Bolshoi Ballet Academy and to sign a contract with the company before becoming a top ballerina of the Kremlin Ballet.
- Off the Rails – Screen Media (VOD) – UK – Comedy directed by Jules Williamson. Three fifty-something women set out to repeat the European interrailing adventures of their youth, after their close friend passes away leaving them rail tickets, and a final request: to take her teenage daughter with them.
- The Unforgivable – Netflix – USA – Drama directed by Nora Fingscheidt stars Sandra Bullock as a woman who is released from prison after serving 20 years for murdering a cop and tries to make a new life for herself, and to reunite with her younger sister with whom she’s lost touch.
Film descriptions are adapted from press releases. Titles highlighted in red have links to full reviewsStay tuned in for next week’s releases! Contact us if we’ve overlooked anything.