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Weekly Update for May 9: Women Centric, Directed and Written Films Playing Near You

Weekly Update for May 9: Women Centric, Directed and Written Films Playing Near You

Films About Women Opening

Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return – Co-Written by Randi Barnes 

Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return is a 3D-animated musical based on the adventure books by Roger Stanton Baum, the great-grandson of L. Frank Baum. A continuation of one of the world’s most popular and beloved fairy tales, Legends of Oz finds Dorothy (Lea Michele) waking to post-tornado Kansas, only to be whisked back to Oz to try to save her old friends the Scarecrow (Dan Aykroyd), the Lion (Jim Belushi), the Tin Man (Kelsey Grammer) and Glinda (Bernadette Peters) from a devious new villain, the Jester (Martin Short). Wiser the owl (Oliver Platt), Marshal Mallow (Hugh Dancy), China Princess (Megan Hilty) and Tugg the tugboat (Patrick Stewart) join Dorothy on her latest magical journey through the colorful landscape of Oz to restore order and happiness to Emerald City. Set to the tunes of Academy Award-nominated singer/songwriter Bryan Adams, Legends of Oz marks a charming, family-friendly return to the Oz franchise. (Rotten Tomatoes)

Mom’s Night Out – Co-Written by Andrea Gyertson Nasfell

Moms deserve more than “Moms’ Night Out,” a Christian comedy about four women who leave their children at home to mostly disastrous results. Still, the film has a few highlights, as I note in my review for TheWrap: “Star Sarah Drew (“Grey’s Anatomy”), a real revelation, gets a few early scenes to demonstrate her comic genius…. Jittery as a fly’s wings, Drew’s Allyson is a hilarious mess, prey to her trio of willful brats and increasingly frustrated with her stay-at-home situation.” (Inkoo Kang)


A young psychology student is drawn into the dark and fearful world of a diabolic and mysterious App that starts to terrorize her, distributing compromising photographs, videos and text messages about herself and delves deeper and deeper into her personal life, flawlessly exposing all of her deepest secrets (Press Material)

Stage Fright 

Starry-eyed teenager Camilla Swanson (Allie Macdonald) wants to follow in her mother’s (Minnie Driver) footsteps and become a Broadway diva, but she’s stuck working in the kitchen of a snobby performing arts camp. Determined to change her destiny, she sneaks in to audition for the summer showcase and lands a lead role in the play, but just as rehearsals begin, blood starts to spill, and Camilla soon finds herself terrified by the horror of musical theatre. (Rotten Tomatoes)

The Rescuers (doc)

The film traces the journey of Stephanie Nyombayire, a young Rwandan anti-genocide activist who teams up with Sir Martin Gilbert, the renowned Holocaust historian, to travel across 15 countries and three continents interviewing survivors and descendants of the diplomats who rescued tens of thousands of Jews from the unspeakable horrors of the Nazi death camps. While Nyombayire embarks upon this quest in an effort to uncover potential solutions for the ongoing genocide in Darfur and elsewhere, what emerges from their journey is more a testament to the ways in which the inherent good in the human spirit can trump institutional evil no matter what the circumstance. (Palm Springs International Film Festival)

Films About Women Currently Playing

Belle – Directed by Amma Asante; Written by Misan Sagay

Decoding Annie Parker

Breastmilk (doc) – Directed by Dana Ben-Ari

For a Woman – Written and Directed by Diane Kurys


Journey of a Female Comic – Co-Directed by Kiki Melendez; Written by Kiki Melendez and Lyn McCullough

Walk of Shame

The M Word

Bright Days Ahead – Directed by Marion Vernoux; Co-Written by Marion Vernoux and Fanny Chesnel

The Other Woman – Directed by Melissa Stack 

Young and Beautiful 

Gabrielle – Written and Directed by Louise Archambault

Redwood Highway

Hateship Loveship – Directed by Liza Johnson

Nymphomaniac: Part Two

Under the Skin

Finding Vivian Maier (doc)

Divergent – Co-Written by Vanessa Taylor

On My Way – Co-Written and Directed by Emmanuelle Bercot 


Films Directed by Women Opening

Palo Alto – Written and Directed by Gia Coppola 

Shy, sensitive April (Emma Roberts) is the class virgin — a popular soccer player and frequent babysitter for her single-dad coach, Mr. B. (James Franco). Teddy (Jack Kilmer) is an introspective artist whose best friend and sidekick Fred (Nat Wolff) is an unpredictable live wire with few filters or boundaries. While April negotiates a dangerous affair with Mr. B., and Teddy performs community service for a DUI — secretly carrying a torch for April, who may or may not share his affection — Fred seduces Emily (Zoe Levin), a promiscuous loner who seeks validation through sexual encounters. One high school party bleeds into another as April and Teddy finally acknowledge their mutual affection, and Fred’s escalating recklessness spirals into chaos. (Rotten Tomatoes)

Fed Up (doc) – Directed and Co-Written by Stephanie Soechtig

For the past 30 years, everything we thought we knew about food and exercise is dead wrong. Fed Up is the film the food industry doesn’t want you to see. From producer Katie Couric and director Stephanie Soechtig, Fed Up will change the way you eat forever. (Rotten Tomatoes)

Cyber Seniors(doc) – Directed by Saffron Cassaday

Cyber-Seniors follows the extraordinary journey of a group of senior citizens as they discover the world of the Internet through the guidance of teenage mentors. Their exploration of cyber-space is catapulted to another level when 89 year-old Shura decides to create a YouTube cooking video. A spirited video competition for the most “views” evolves as the cyber-seniors’ hidden talents and competitive spirits are revealed. (Pres Materials)

Films Directed by Women Currently Playing

Beneath the Harvest Sky – Co-Directed and Co-Written by Gita Pullapilly

Friended to Death – Written and Directed by Sarah Smick

The German Doctor – Written and Dircted by Lucia Puenzo 

Vanishing Pearls: The Oystermen of Point a la Hache (doc) – Directed by Nailah Jefferson 

Dancing in Jaffa (doc) – Directed by Hilla Medalia

The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden (doc) – Co-Directed by Dayna Goldfine and Co-Written by Dayna Goldfine and Celeste Schaefer Snyder 

Watermark (doc) – Co-Directed by Jennifer Baichwal

Films Written by Women Currently Playing

50 to 1 – Co-Written by Faith Conroy 

About Last Night – Co-Written by Leslye Headland 

Films by and About Women on DVD or on Demand 

A Healthy Baby Girl – Directed by Judith Helfand
Forev – Co-Directed by Molly Green; Co-Written by Molly Green with additional screenplay material from Noel Wells and Amanda Bauer 

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