MOVIE OF THE WEEK October 19, 2018: CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?

Melissa McCarthy trades pratfalls and slapstick for wry wit and introspection in Marielle Heller’s keenly observed biopic “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” McCarthy plays biographer Lee Israel, whose brief time in the Manhattan publishing scene’s spotlight has passed, leaving her bitter, lonely, and strapped for cash, which ultimately leads to a life of literary crime. It’s a compelling role for McCarthy, who seems to relish the opportunity to take on more serious material.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK September 28, 2018: JANE FONDA IN FIVE ACTS

“Trying to be perfect is a toxic journey,” says Jane Fonda in Susan Lacy’s revealing, deeply personal documentary Jane Fonda in Five Acts, and — after hearing stories she’s told for the previous two hours — it’s impossible to disagree. Fonda’s revelatory reflections on her life as actress and activist make it clear that giving herself permission to be imperfect let her become her happiest self.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK July 20, 2018: 93Queen

motw logo 1-35Paula Eiselt’s documentary follows Rachel ‘Ruchie’ Freier, an Orthodox Jewish wife, mother and lawyer, as she launches an all-female ambulance corps to serve women of NY’s Hasidic community in Brooklyn. The result is a compelling glimpse inside an insular community and a fascinating portrait of a determined feminist.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK July 13, 2018: DARK MONEY

motw logo 1-35If you’re already feeling cynical about the current state of our country, fair warning: Dark Money isn’t going to lighten your mental load. Kimberly Reed’s intelligent documentary is an important, timely expose of the dangers that shady funding of political campaigns poses to the democratic ideals that many Americans hold dear.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK July 6, 2018: DARK RIVER

motw logo 1-30In Clio Barnard’s gripping drama about incest, Ruth Wilson plays an itinerant shepherd who returns to her family’s Yorkshire farm after her father’s death. Challenging her brother’s control of the place, she grapples with haunting memories of childhood abuse. Barnard’s raw, authentic style and Wilson’s spare, understated performance are devastating.

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AWFJ Summer 2018 Movies Watch List

Ranging from mirth-filled comedies to truth-based stories of feminist activism, from gal pal road trip scenarios and inspiring biopics to exposes of the heinous evils of sexism and racism, these are films that illuminate, educate and entertain. Despite their diverse subjects and styles, they are all about women and they respectfully represent women’s perspectives on the social and political issues that we all face in daily life. Each film is a powerful reminder of how far we’ve come — and how much further we need to go. Make this a #MeToo summer of movie watching.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK June 29, 2018: LEAVE NO TRACE

motw logo 1-35Debra Granik’s Leave No Trace is a gripping drama about a teenage girl living with her dissident father in survivalist mode in the woods, shunning society until authorities force them to enter the mainstream and conform. Granik’s subtle style creates an environment of fear, without relying on violence or dystopian elements.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK, March 9, 2018: CLAIRE’S CAMERA

motw logo 1-35Claire’s Camera is Cannes-centric. Filmmaker Hong Sang-soo set his quirky, genre-defying drama in the sun-drenched seaside resort as the festival takes place, but never visits the event’s star-studded glamour or industry hustle that actually surrounded the film’s Cannes premiere in 2017. And, since the story is about friendship between two women, Claire’s Camera is femme-centric, too. Continue reading…

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AWFJ’s Women’s History Month Movies Watch List

AWFJ’s curated Women’s History Month movies watch list ranges from mirth-filled comedies to truth-based tales of feminist activism, from gal pal road trip scenarios to exposes of heinous sexism and racism. The wide range of films have one thing in common: all respectfully represent women’s perspectives on social and political issues that we face in daily life. Each is a powerful reminder of how far we’ve come — and how much further we need to go. To access the list, Continue reading…

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK February 23, 2018: HALF MAGIC

motw logo 1-35Heather Graham’s directorial debut, Half Magic, is femme-centric, but won’t pass the Bechdel Test. The comedy focuses on three women who have viable careers and talk to each other — but almost all of their conversation is about men and sex. More specifically, about how to hook up with nicer men and have better sex. Continue reading…

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