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Weekly Update for July 17: Women Centric, Directed and Written Films Playing Near You

Weekly Update for July 17: Women Centric, Directed and Written Films Playing Near You

Films About Women Opening This Week

Trainwreck – Written by Amy Schumer

It’s Amy Schumer’s time. The woman is everywhere, mostly in a good way. She’s brash, funny, feminist and riding high with her first starring movie role in “Trainwreck,” which she also wrote. 

The movie feels so now. Schumer plays Amy, a version of herself who is, as the title says, a trainwreck at life. She’s a refreshing character because she upends all the conventional wisdom about women in the movies. She drinks too much. Has unapologetic sex. Is not looking for a relationship — in fact, she is actually repelled by relationships. Not your typical female character. 

And that’s why she is so important. This movie brings Schumer’s TV voice to the big screen and, let’s be clear, that’s not always a guarantee to work. Judd Apatow directs and smartly stays out of Schumer’s way and let’s her do the heavy lifting. 

This might not be a revolutionary film, so to speak — in many ways, it’s a conventional rom com — but it feels like a movie that shows us where women are today, like I imagine how many women felt when “An Unmarried Woman” came out in 1978. We may be in 2015, but what this move makes clear is that there is still so much work to be done on issues between the sexes. Schumer hits on many of these points and makes us think about how we all relate to each other — and she uses kick-ass, hysterical humor to do that. That is something to celebrate. (Melissa Silverstein)

Lila & Eve (Also available on VOD)

Viola Davis and Jennifer Lopez star as grieving mothers on a mission for street justice in a vigilante thriller that’s much more thoughtful and compassionate than the film’s day-and-date release would suggest. In my review for TheWrap, I wrote, “The familiar thriller aspects are nowhere near as compelling as the two women’s angry rejection of the unbearable powerlessness they’ve been told isn’t just their lot to bear, but the right way to respond to their grief.” Unsurprisingly, Davis reminds us why she’s one of the greatest actresses of her generation with a performance that’s deeply human and touchingly tragic. (Inkoo Kang)

The Mama Sherpas (Documentary) – Directed by Brigid Maher – Opens July 21 (Also available on VOD)

“The Mama Sherpas” is a feature-length documentary that follows nurse midwives, the doctors they work with, and their patients over the course of two years. The documentary will provide a personal glimpse into what midwives can bring into the birthing process in the hospital system. Through showing rather than telling, “The Mama Sherpas” will demonstrate how easily practices of midwifery could be mainstreamed into current medical practices to improve health care and costs of obstetrics care for all involved. (Press materials)

Twinsters (Documentary) – Co-Directed and Written by Samantha Futerman

In February 2013, Anaïs Bordier, a French fashion student living in London, stumbled upon a YouTube video featuring Samantha Futerman, an actress in Los Angeles, and was struck by their uncanny resemblance. After discovering they were born on the same day in Busan, Korea and both put up for adoption, Anaïs reached out to Samantha via Facebook. In “Twinsters,” we follow Samantha and Anaïs’ journey into sisterhood, witnessing everything from their first meeting, to their first trip back to Korea where their separation took place. “Twinsters” explores the meaning of family and connection through a story that would have been impossible just 10 years ago without social media. (Press materials)

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Samantha Futerman.

Films About Women Currently Playing

Tangerine

Stations of the Cross- Co-Written by Anna Bruggemann

Mad Women

Amy (Documentary)

A Little Chaos – Co-Written by Alison Deegan

What Happened, Miss Simone? (Documentary) – Directed by Liz Garbus (Available on Netflix)

Runoff – Written and Directed by Kimberly Levin

Inside Out

Spy

Testament of Youth

Tomorrowland

The Divergent Series: Insurgent

Mad Max: Fury Road

I’ll See You In My Dreams

Pitch Perfect 2 – Directed by Elizabeth Banks; Written by Kay Cannon

Hot Pursuit – Directed by Anne Fletcher

Clouds of Sils Maria

Aloft – Written and Directed by Claudia Llosa

Far From the Madding Crowd

The Age of Adaline

Woman in Gold

Iris (Documentary)

Gemma Bovary – Directed by Anne Fontaine

She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry (Documentary) – Directed by Mary Dore

Hot Pursuit – Directed by Anne Fletcher

Clouds of Sils Maria

Aloft – Written and Directed by Claudia Llosa

Films Directed by Women Opening This Week

None

Films Directed by Women Currently Playing

Strangerland – Directed by Kim Farrant and Co-Written by Fiona Seres

Meet Me in Montenegro (Also available on VOD) – Co-Directed and Co-Written by Linnea Saasen

Stray Dog (Documentary) – Directed by Debra Granik

Batkid Begins (Documentary) – Directed and Co-Written by Dana Nachman

Infinitely Polar Bear – Directed and Written by Maya Forbes

Eden – Directed and Co-Written by Mia Hansen-Løve

The Yes Men Are Revolting (Documentary) – Co-Directed by Laura Nix

The Wolfpack (Documentary) – Directed by Crystal Moselle

Films Written by Women Opening This Week

Steak (R)evolution (Documentary) – Co-Written by Verane Frediani

Gourmet road trip looking for the best steak in the world. Breeders, farmers, butchers, cooks, historians and business men all around the world (France, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Belgium, UK, USA, Canada, Japan, Argentina, Brazil) help us understand the (r)evolution taking place right now and the challenges ahead. (Press materials)

Films Written by Women Currently Playing

10,000 Km – Co-Written by Clara Roquet

Terminator: Genisys – Co-Written by Laeta Kalogridis

Jurassic World – Co-Written by Amanda Silver

TV Premiering This Week
Tig (Documentary) (Netflix, now) – Directed by Kristina Goolsby and Ashley York; Written by Jennifer Arnold

Overnight success in the Internet age is often equal parts skill, timing and luck. Or, in the case of comic Tig Notaro, really bad luck. While well known in comedy circles, Notaro wasn’t a household name until life handed her a seemingly insurmountable bushel of lemons. In the span of four months in 2012, she was hospitalized with a life-threatening bacterial infection, her mother died from a freak fall, she broke up with her girlfriend and she was diagnosed with cancer in both breasts. It’s how she persevered and turned those tragedies into that proverbial lemonade that makes up the new documentary “Tig,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival this January and lands on Netflix Friday July 17. (Dorothy Snarker) Read more of Women and Hollywood’s review of “Tig.”

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Kristina Gools and Ashley York.

Cedar Cove (Hallmark) – Starring Andie MacDowell – July 18

In “Cedar Cove,” Judge Olivia Lockhart (Andie MacDowell) is considered the community’s guiding light in the picturesque, coastal town of Cedar Cove, Washington. But like everyone else, Olivia fights the uphill battle of balancing career with family and finding love, all the while doing her best to care for the township she calls home. Based on best-selling author Debbie Macomber’s beloved book series. (Press materials) 

Packed In A Trunk: The Lost Art of Edith Lake Wilkinson (Documentary) (HBO, July 20) – Directed by Michelle Boyaner; Written by Michelle Boyaner and Jane Anderson

Filmmaker Jane Anderson examines the life of her late great aunt Edith Lake Wilkinson, who was an artist in Provincetown, Mass., but whose artwork was hidden away in a trunk for 40 years after she was committed to an asylum in 1925. (Press materials)

VOD/DVD Releasing This Week 

Felt – Co-Written by Amy Everson (VOD)

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