In The County, One Woman Stands Up to a Provincial Nightmare

The Icelandic film is the nightmare version of “Husavik,” depicting a place where community values interfere with individual liberty.

In the pre-show for the Academy Awards this week, there was a charming performance of “Husavik,” the nominated song from Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga. Molly Sandén performed the song from Húsavík, the small coastal town where the film takes place, and local children served as the back-up choir. With a refrain […]

Together Together Depicts a Friendship Defined by its Boundaries

At first, it feels almost unbearably pleasant. But its kindness isn’t an affectation; it’s a meaningful choice.

Together Together is like one of those relentlessly positive people you meet and immediately hate because you don’t believe their niceness is for real. Then you get to know them better and discover their positivity isn’t exactly a pose. It’s a choice to get through the day. The film by writer-director Nikole Beckwith, about the […]

Bloodthirsty Is a Monster Movie with Bite and Ambition

Its scares are not intense and veer on the wrong side of predictable, yet there is real thought behind the premise. This is a film with something to say.

Zombies and vampires cannot change who they are. They are always on the hunt for brains or blood, and that search is their defining characteristic. What makes the supernatural creatures in Bloodthirsty different—and arguably more interesting—than those monsters is how their burden is a curse, allowing them some freedom of choice. The modestly budgeted Canadian […]

The Man Who Sold His Skin Can’t Live Up to a Thrilling Premise

It’s a wildly original concept, rippling with political, artistic, and moral complexities, but it somehow adds up to less than the sum of its parts.

A great premise can be both a blessing and a curse. Consider The Man Who Sold His Skin, a Tunisian film recently nominated for Best International Feature at the upcoming Oscars. It’s about a Syrian refugee who agrees to rent his body to a prominent European artist, who tattoos creative designs on his back and […]

WeWork Promised Paradise. Hulu’s Documentary Shows It Failed to Deliver.

Apart from an unnecessary footnote, Jed Rothstein's documentary is a thought-provoking, candid look at the rise and fall of WeWork.

Beer was crucial to WeWork’s success. The commercial real estate company, one that offered communal shared office space, differentiated itself by having kegs of beer and happy hours at its many locations. By appealing to millennials in the 2010s, a cohort without many responsibilities, WeWork could emphasize the “cool” aspect of their brand. The new […]

Tina Is Hagiography. It’s What Tina Turner Deserves.

The documentary sees the star's comeback as the beginning of her life, which returns the power to where it rightfully belongs.

In Tina, a documentary about the life of Tina Turner built around an exclusive interview with the star, you occasionally sense a work that is trying to justify its own existence. Turner has already co-authored a memoir, I, Tina: My Life Story, published at the height of her fame in 1986. She also authorized a […]

Zack Snyder’s Justice League Proves Lore Is No Substitute for Craft

The four-hour "Snyder Cut" doubles down on darkness and Easter eggs instead of compelling storytelling.

It should be easy to dismiss Zack Snyder’s Justice League as nonsense. It’s about a group of superheroes—some caped, others not—who work together to defeat an intergalactic genocidal alien. This is also the same plot as an Avengers film, so the key difference is in the execution. Whereas the Marvel movies opt for broadly appealing […]

The Environmental Film Festival Returns With a Virtual Slate

Last year, DCEFF was one of the first events canceled due to COVID. In 2021, it's back in a robust, virtual fashion.

Last year, the in-person Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital, set to begin March 12, was one of the first events in the region canceled due to COVID-19 and a sign of what was to come. In the weeks that followed, organizers were able to scrape together a mini-festival of films available virtually—another sign […]

The Inheritance Pushes Boundaries to Share its Message

It's hard to ding a movie that seeks to inspire revolutionary change for deviating from the norm.

There are several scenes in The Inheritance in which the characters—young Black activists who have started a collective in West Philadelphia—give direct-to-camera interviews in front of a wall plastered with quotations from Black revolutionaries. “Practice without thought is blind,” reads one. “Thought without practice is empty.” This playful and penetrating film follows the impulse of […]

At Cinema Arts Theatre, You Can Bring Your Own Movie. Other Theaters Have Different Plans.

Some theaters bring the movies to you; others let you bring your own to their screens. One thing they can’t do: host normal screenings with a theater packed full of people.

The postponement of wide releases in movie theaters, along with their widespread closing, all seemed to happen so suddenly. As the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the world, major studios pulled their blockbusters from theatrical release. The superhero film Black Widow has been delayed indefinitely, while the release date for the James Bond film No Time […]


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