Featuring a fearless star performance from Amy Ryan, documentary veteran Liz Garbus’ first dramatic feature, Lost Girls, is a wrenching story about a mother’s search for truth — and justice. It’s based on the real-life story of Mari Gilbert, a New York woman whose dogged determination to find out what happened to her missing daughter led to the discovery of serial killings in Long Island.Read more
The heart of Lost Girls is the connection forged by the survivors – the sorrowful sisters and guilt-ridden mothers who bond over the similar fates of their daughters. Amy Ryan is the hard-bitten engine driving this charge against simply shrugging off the disappearance of women, prostitutes or not. But the most soulful performance is given by Thomasin McKenzie as a daughter who supports her crusading mom even though her own needs are pushed aside.Read more
A frightened prostitute runs into dark night and seemingly disappears off the face of the earth, sending a frantic mother into a walking nightmare of official indifference in this tense, evocative drama, drawn from an actual case.
Documentary filmmaker Liz Garbus makes her fiction feature debut with an engrossing, character-driven film.
Set in Germany during the waning days of WWII, the New Zealand filmmaker’s adaptation of Christine Leunen’s novel “Caging Skies” follows 10-year-old Jojo (wonderful newcomer Roman Griffin Davis), a new Hitler Youth recruit who so fancies himself a Nazi zealot that his imaginary friend is a clownish version of Adolf Hitler (Waititi, brilliantly eccentric).Read more
Some people consider satirizing the bigoted high and mighty unproductive. Others feel satire offers an effective way to bare and undermine evil, knowing laughter may be both therapeutic and effective, even politically empowering. Based on director Waititi’s Jojo Rabbit, I’m in the latter camp, and all for more ridicule of depraved individuals.Read more
Beloved by Sundance and other top film festivals, as well as by the Academy and indie awards organizations and a long list of awards-presenting critics groups, Debra Granik is attracting early Oscars buzz for Leave No Trace, her third narrative feature. AWFJ selected Leave No Trace as Movie of the Week for June 29, and an informal poll of AWFJ members shows that the film is placing high on most members’ lists of best 2018 films to date. AWFJ says Leave No Trace has legs that will lead to Oscars, come awards seasonRead more
Debra 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.Read more
The very idea of going off the grid sounds mighty appealing right about now. No cable news. No digital gadgets.Read more
With films like Winter’s Bone and documentary Stray Dog, Debra Granik has proved herself to be a masterful explorer ofRead more
Debra Granik’s Leave No Trace is a gem of a film, a quietly gripping drama about a father and daughterRead more