MOVIE OF THE WEEK March 18, 2022: THE HATER

In a world plagued by political polarization and ideological opposition, The Hater is a refreshing reminder of the power of empathy. The story of fiercely idealistic activist Dorothy (writer/director/star Joey Ally) and her crusade against her childhood-tormentor-turned-smarmy-politico Brent (Ian Harding) promotes understanding of both the dismayed outrage of liberal progressives and the staunch independence of born-and-bred conservatives. The resulting comedy is more likely to provoke thoughtful laughter than knee-slapping guffaws.

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THE HATER – Review by Susan Wloszczyna

Joey Alley is a sort of a one-woman band as she makes her feature directorial debut based on her own original screenplay while starring as the main character in The Hater. As Dorothy Goodwin a California resident, a dedicated environmentalist and a liberal speechwriter on a U.S. Senate campaign who loses her job after al protest about a flag goes wrong. This political comedy layers on such hot-button topics as gun control, abortions, climate change as well as support for our veterans.

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THE HATER – Review by Liz Whittemore

The Hater plays out against the backdrop of the 2020 election cycle. The dialogue feels incredibly natural, slyly introducing important national platforms. It’s funny and tangible. Beyond the liberal slant, the concept that “we are more alike than we are different” is the major theme. Watching women discuss politics is ceaselessly entertaining. The takedown of toxic masculinity with passion and logic is unmistakable. While you’re not looking, The Hater is predominantly about empowering women. Writer/director/star Joey Ally doesn’t ignore the reality of both parties using dirty tactics. Through moral ambiguity and a whole lot of laughs, I loved every minute of this film.

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THE ARTIST’S WIFE – Review by Susan Granger

Written by director Tom Dolby, along with Nicole Brending and Abdi Nazemian, the pulpy plot’s not only predictable but somewhat similar to the Glenn Close/Jonathan Pryce 2018 drama “The Wife.” Although it evokes memories of the relationship between Lee Krasner & Jackson Pollack, it was apparently inspired by events experienced by Dolby’s parents; his father was famed sound engineer Ray Dolby.

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THE ARTIST’S WIFE – April Neale

What a disappointing life it would be to love and worship symmetry, when all life does is present us chaotic Dali and Picasso paintings. This statement is the issue we have for physically failing successful commercial artist Richard Smythson (Bruce Dern) whose grasp on reality and his own existence is slowly being ravaged by Alzheimer’s.

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THE MUSTANG – Review by Diane Carson

Taming wild animals—human or equine—demands incredible patience as demonstrated in director Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre’s The Mustang, which draws on Wild Horse Inmate Programs that pair hard-core prisoners with mustangs. A designated inmate trains his assigned horse for auction. The sale money funds the ongoing Mustang project.

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