ENCOUNTER – Review by Diane Carson

In Encounter, the decorated Special Forces Marine combat veteran and father Malik Khan lovingly delights and amuses, then dominates and terrifies his two sons Jay and Bobby after he kidnaps them, certain he’s saving them from aliens. With Riz Ahmed as Malik, through intense physical scenes and a psychological labyrinth, the story moves through hairpin turns and tense confrontations.

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BINGO HELL – Review by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas (Exclusive Photos)

Aging and having your life revolve around bingo might sound like a living hell. But in Gigi Saul Guerrero’s sophomore feature – bingo is a bond. It tethers friends and neighbors together in a fun, regular ritual at the community hall which forms the foundations of their day-to-day lives. They share their highs and lows, accomplishments and losses, struggles and triumphs. If someone is going through a tough time, the others do what they can to help. They cut each other’s hair. They fix each other’s cars. They listen to each other’s family dramas, never afraid to speak up and call someone out if they are the one being the jerk.

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BORAT SUBSEQUENT MOVIEFILM – Review by Susan Granger

It’s been 14 years since pseudo-Kazakh journalist Borat Sagdiyev (Sacha Baron Cohen) visited the United States but he’s back – this time on a mission to deliver Johnny the Monkey, Kazakhstan’s minister of culture/#1 porn star, to bribe Vice President Mike Pence to admit his country’s leader to “the strongman club.”

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BRITTANIA – Review by Susan Granger

If you’re still suffering Game of Thrones withdrawal, let me recommend this nine-part series. There’s war, family intrigue and witchcraft – aplenty. Writers Jez Butterworth, Tom Butterworth and James Richardson use the Druids’ murky, nature-worshipping, pagan history as a launching point for this fictional fantasy.

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ALL IN: THE FIGHT FOR DEMOCRACY – Review by Martha K Baker

We are taught that democracy began with the Founding Fathers. It did not. Those men in knee britches granted suffrage to their fellows: White men. Men of property. 6% of the population. Over the next 200 years and change, the rest of the nation has had to fight for the vote. Directors Lisa Cortes and Liz Garbus balance newsreels and graphics with commentary to present a civics lesson worthy of studied absorption.

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THE ANDORRA HUSTLE – Review by Diane Carson

If any doubt lingers about the international corruption of banking and the vindictive behavior of countries advancing their own political agendas, writer/director Eric Merola’s documentary The Andorra Hustle will dispel any reservations in an exceedingly complicated exposition. The long-standing Catalan conflict with Spain became the catalyst for surreptitious, nefarious manipulations of a financial nature and false charges of money laundering.

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THE VAST OF NIGHT – Review by Diane Carson

Finding inspiration in early television science fiction, this satisfying little film zips through 89 minutes with confidence and style. What a delight it is to be swept up in 1950s small town New Mexico as switchboard operator Fay hears an indecipherable audio frequency and transmits it to friend Everett, hosting a radio call in.

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