MOVIE OF THE WEEK July 19, 2019: Claudia Myers’ ABOVE THE SHADOWS

Just about everyone ends up feeling invisible at some point during their teen years — but what if you actually disappeared? That’s what happens to Holly in writer/director Claudia Myers Above the Shadows, a drama/fantasy that serves as an allegory for what it’s like to be marginalized out of your very existence.

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ABOVE THE SHADOWS – Review by Leslie Combemale

Loss changes us. Sometimes we face that, sometimes we don’t. That’s something new indie release and winner of the audience award at the Brooklyn Film Festival Above the Shadows explores. A fantasy anchored in the reality of 21st century daily life, it is the story of Holly, (Olivia Thirlby) who, after losing her beloved mother, fades out of sight over time.

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TONI MORRISON: THE PIECES I AM – Review by Martha K Baker

Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am treats viewers to a life of words wrought. Toni Morrison, now 78, sits like a great Buddha throughout this excellent documentary. Clad in silver and grey and black, she is imperturbable, articulate, magisterial, satiny, wise. She makes no apologies for her work, her honors, her offerings. These pieces she is rate as significant — as essential as a quilt’s.

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ABOVE THE SHADOWS – Review by Sheila Roberts

In Claudia Myers’ indie fantasy drama, Above The Shadows, Holly is lonely, grief stricken and isolated, and she is left with no choice but to navigate the world from the shadows. She was the closest of all the children to her mother, whom she felt was the only person in the world who understood and cared for her. When she tries to interact with the rest of her family after her mother’s death, they ignore her until she fades completely from their presence and is forgotten.

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ABOVE THE SHADOWS – Review by Cate Marquis

Like most good science fiction/fantasy, Claudia Myers’ Above the Shadows is really about our world and the people who live in it. Actually, it is more a fairy tale or parable than science fiction, so analyzing how her invisibility works is pointless. You just have to go with it, but Above the Shadows will reward you for that journey.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK: Lynn Shelton’s SWORD OF TRUST

Opportunity makes strange — but ultimately well-suited — bedfellows in Lynn Shelton’s quirky dramedy Sword of Trust. Centered on an antique weapon that may (or may not) have played an unexpectedly important role in American history, it digs into the denial and hate that are tied into so much of the divisiveness that’s currently plaguing our country. All with an absurdist tone, naturally.

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SWORD OF TRUST – Review by Sheila Roberts

In a regressive era deeply mired in conspiracy theories, revisionist history, fake news and questionable truths, esteemed filmmaker Lynn Shelton’s hilarious and beautifully crafted Sword of Trust is a welcome pleasure. This provocative ensemble comedy is anchored by an excellent cast, inspired writing, quirky yet accessible characters in complex interpersonal relationships, and a zany premise that mocks our current political and cultural divide.

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SWORD OF TRUST – Review by Susan Wloszczyna

Lynn Shelton’s Sword of Trust might be a mumblecore boondoggle whose oddly relevant narrative for our divisive times gets unraveled when it devolves into a wacky road trip during its conclusion. But luckily, the filmmaker puts her trust in her actors, especially WTF podcast star and Glow co-star Marc Maron as a sarcastic pawnshop owner in Birmingham, Ala., and gives them enough improv rope to allow them to feel like real people – some of whom we would be glad to know.

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Tracy Edwards on the Making of MAIDEN – Sarah Knight Adamson interviews

Maiden tells the inspirational tale of adventure on the dangerous high seas and deliberate prejudice on dry land of Tracy Edwards, skipper of the first all-female crew to enter the ‘Whitbread Round the World’ in 1989. Her teenage dream was met with male opposition; the men thought she would never finish the race, and even made bets on her failure. Potential sponsors rejected her, fearing her crew would die at sea and generate bad publicity. In spite of these obstacles, she persevered to overcome male sexism by shocking the sporting world and proving that women are very much the equals of men in yacht racing.

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