“The Pretty One” by Jenée LaMarque (2013)

The Pretty One

An intelligent take on ‘a young woman in search of her identity’ / enjoyable, witty, deep, sensitive… / First feature

Cast: Zoe Kazan, Jake M. Johnson, Ron Livingston, Danny Pudi, Sterling Beaumon, Jeremy Howard
Director: Jenée LaMarque
Writer: Jenée LaMarque
Director of Photography: Polly Morgan
Editor: Kiran Pallegadda

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“Mommy Is At The Hairdresser’s” by Léa Pool (Canada, 2008)

Non-U.S. female directors

Mommy is at the hairdresser

The 60’s, the American dream. A woman discovers that her husband betrays her with a man. She is so humiliated and wounded that she leaves her family.
Her three children express their resentment, loss, pain, feeling of guilt, and incomprehension in very different ways. A beautiful and poignant movie!

Cast: Marianne Fortier, Élie Dupuis, Hugo St-Onge-Paquin
Director: Léa Pool
Writer: Isabelle Hébert
Music by Laurent Eyquem
Cinematography by Daniel Jobin
Film Editing by Dominique Fortin

“Life Partners” by Susanna Fogel (USA, 2014)

 

First feature

Life Partners

Two long-time best friends come into adulthood in very different ways / a coming of age story that avoids stereotypes / good direction, script, personages, and dialogues

Cast: Leighton Meester, Gillian Jacobs, Adam Brody, Gabourey Sidibe, Beth Dover, Abby Elliott, Mark Feuerstein, Kate McKinnon, Greer Grammer
Director: Susanna Fogel
Writer: Joni Lefkowitz, Susanna Fogel
Director of Photography: Brian Burgoyne

“Gas, Food, Lodging” by Allison Anders (USA, 1993)

Gas, Food, Lodging

Surprising, great personages

Cast: Brooke Adams, Ione Skye, Fairuza Balk
Director: Allison Anders
Writers: Richard Peck (novel), Allison Anders (screenplay)
Music by J. Mascis
Cinematography by Dean Lent
Film Editing by Tracy Granger

“Princess Cyd” by Stephen Cone (USA, 2017)

Lesbian love seen through the eyes of male directors

Princess Cyd

Sex and relationships in the eyes of a teenage girl and a woman in her late 40’s.
Stages 3 women in a finely-tuned coming-of-age and out-of-the-closet story, with balanced personages, multi-faceted sexual identities, and an healthy racial distribution.
“You may look at Miranda, and think immediately, ‘Oh, okay, I know who that woman is’. You would be wrong. The same for Cyd. ‘Oh, okay. Bored teenager sunbathing in a bikini. I know who that is’. Again, you would be wrong.” writes Sheila O’Malley.

Cast: Rebecca Spence, Jessie Pinnick, Malic White, James Vincent Meredith, Tyler Ross, Matthew Quattrocki
Director: Stephen Cone
Writer: Stephen Cone
Editor: Christopher Gotschall
Director of Photography: Zoe White
Original Music Composer: Heather McIntosh

“Blue Is The Warmest Color” (La Vie d’Adèle) by Abdellatif Kechiche (France, 2013)

Lesbian love through the eyes of male directors

Blue Is The Warmest Color

Heavily sexualized approach, missing intimacy / Great lead personage / Could have been 60 min. shorter

Cast: Adèle Exarchopoulos, Léa Seydoux, Catherine Salée, Jeremie Laheurte, Aurélien Recoing, Sandor Funtek, Salim Kechiouche, Mona Walravens
Director: Abdellatif Kechiche
Screenplay: Abdellatif Kechiche, Ghalia Lacroix
Cinematography by Sofian El Fani
Film Editing by Sophie Brunet, Ghalia Lacroix, Albertine Lastera, Jean-Marie Lengelle, Camille Toubkis

“The Glass Castle” by Destin Cretton (USA, 2017)

A few recent movies on fatherhood

The Glass Castle

Love your father no matter what / You can’t live with yourself and reject where you come from… These are a few of the messages in this ode to the family that is in fact a glorification of patriarchy and that ends in syrupy sentimentality / Ill-adapted flashbacks

Cast: Brie Larson, Naomi Watts, Woody Harrelson, Max Greenfield, Ella Anderson, Sarah Snook, Olivia Kate Rice, Dominic Bogart Shree Crooks, Charlie Shotwell, Sadie Sink
Director: Destin Cretton
Writer (based upon the book by) Jeannette Walls
Writer: Destin Cretton, Andrew Lanham
Cinematographer: Brett Pawlak
Editor: Nat Sanders
Composer: Joel P. West