SHOOTING THE MAFIA – Review by Loren King

Besides being a compelling portrait of famed photojournalist Letizia Battaglia and the forces she stood up to in Sicily, Shooting the Mafia is chilling, timely piece of journalism about the far reaching tentacles of corruption and how it systematically ruins innocent lives and decimates societies. It is a chilling, powerful film with contemporary relevance.

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ATLANTICS – Review by Loren King

What a stunning, original, visually striking feature debut from Mati Diop. Senegal’s entry for Best International Film Oscar consideration,Atlantics made history and generated wide interest when it won the Grand Prix at Cannes. Not just that, but Diop, who is of African and French heritage, became the first black woman to direct a film featured in the Festival’s Competition section.

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HONEY BOY – Review by Loren King

Alma Har’el, best known for the 2011 documentary Bombay Beach with its intimate moments of beauty in a gritty story about life on the margins, must be credited for the searing, memory-soaked urgency of Honey Boy, her fiction directing debut. What could have been a maudlin melodrama about family dysfunction is instead, despite the heartbreaking and disturbing abusive father-son relationship at the center, a haunting and lyrical memory piece.

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SERENDIPITY – Review by Loren King

If you don’t know French artist Prune Nourry — and I didn’t before watching her documentary If you don’t know French artist Prune Nourry — and I didn’t before watching her documentary Serendipity — this personal and profound film is a great introduction to a singular creative force and fascinating person.

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#FemalePleasure – Review by Loren King

In this timely and powerful film, writer/director Barbara Miller gives us five of the most passionate and eloquent women you’ll ever meet who are doing the tough work of changing culturally entrenched, deadly attitudes and beliefs about women and girls. This is their story, but it is a global one that resonates in every corner of society.

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JUDY – TIFF19 Review by Loren King

Among the nearly 250 movies, from Hollywood blockbusters to independent foreign films, that screened at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, one of my favorites was Judy, anchored by an astonishing performance by Renee Zellweger. In her first musical performance since Chicago, Zellweger delivers a comeback role for the ages that puts her at the front of this year’s best actress Oscar race.

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TIGERS ARE NOT AFRAID – Review by Loren King

Issa Lopez sets her raw and gripping fantastical tale in an unnamed Mexican city that’s been ravaged by warring drug cartels, the population decimated by ongoing violence, leaving elderly and children as victims in its wake. The city is like a lawless ghost town in a western, where neglected kids peer from the shadows and play just feet away from a corpse; where shots ring out at random; and where everything in sight is broken, defaced and abandoned.

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