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Lesbian Mobsters and Google’s Next Big Thing: August 2015’s VOD and Web Series Picks

Lesbian Mobsters and Google's Next Big Thing: August 2015’s VOD and Web Series Picks

Girls just want to have fun, but how much fun is it the next day, waking up with a massive hangover and no recollection on how one ended up on a lawn, in a bathtub or on a boat in the middle of the ocean? Pretty fun for us, it turns out, at least for the audience, when it comes to Kacey Anning’s web series “Fragment of Friday,” where three 20-something friends try to piece together the night before on the morning after.

In the web series “Nat & Lo’s 20% Project,” two Googlers are having a different kind of fun — the nerdy and inquisitive kind — by learning about different projects and inventions going on at the company.

Alto” also looks like great fun: A lesbian mob comedy, where two young women fall in love, but experience a series of obstacles in the process of coming out to la famiglia.

Having your mother’s boyfriend hitting on you, on the other hand, is very far from fun, which is why the protagonist of “Babygirl,” decides to set up a trap to expose the guy.

Here are our VOD and web series picks for August: 


Alto – Directed by Mikki del Monico

Described as “A lesbian mob comedy,” “Alto” is about two young Italian-American women falling in love. Aspiring singer Frankie (Diana DeGarmo from” American Idol”) meets Nicolette (Natalie Knepp), the daughter of a Mafia don, at a funeral. As their relationship develops, so do the complications with their families.

“Alto” has screened a bunch of festivals, including Frameline, Vision Fest and the Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Festival. It’s currently available on Vimeo.

Babygirl – Written and Directed by Macdara Vallely

A coming-of-age drama set in the Bronx, “Babygirl” centers on 16-year-old Lena (Yainis Ynoa), whose mother has a long history of dating scumbags. When the latest loser, Victor, starts hitting on Lena, she sets a plan in motion to expose him. “This well-drawn morality tale exerts a quiet fascination, both for the subtlety of its execution and the terrific performances from the ensemble,” wrote the Hollywood Reporter.

The film is available on iTunes and VOD.

Web Series

Nat & Lo’s 20% Project – Created by Natalie Hammel and Lorraine Yurshansky

Google famously encourages employees to spend 20% of their time working on their own creative projects. Female Googlers Natalie Hammel and Lorraine Yurshansky decided to spend their 20% making a web series about different projects at Google called “Nat & Lo’s 20% Project.” Each episode follow a creative mind at Google demonstrating and explaining an invention he or she has been working on, like the Street View portable camera system or the Google Translate camera app. We totally fell in love with Gabby, a brilliant and playful hardware engineer who comes up with new projects under the motto “Build fast and break stuff.” She also builds robot snakes in her free time.

Being created by Google employees, it’s not a series asking critical questions. Still, it’s really fun to sneak an inside glimpse of a company whose services most of us use everyday. The series celebrate nerdiness, passion and creativity, and Nat and Lo are charming representatives — they’re smart and curious and expect the same from the viewers.

So far, four episodes are available on YouTube.

Fragments of Friday – Written and Directed by Kacie Anning

You know those Saturday mornings when you wake up with a blackout, a mustache drawn on your face, a cab driver named Ricky in your bed and your roommate puking in your grandmother’s vase? Don’t worry — Australian writer/director/actress Kacie Anning is here to assure your that you’re not alone. In “Fragments of Friday,” we meet three 20-something friends, Alex (Anning), Sophie (Sarah Armanious) and Maddie (Madeleine Jones) on a string of Saturday mornings, where they try to piece together what happened last night — which is always so much harder with a hangover. The series is funny and relatable, though sometimes bordering on the surreal. Embracing fun times, chaos and imperfection, think a subtler version of “The Hangover” mixed with “Girls” and “Broad City,” but with a dash of sweetness. The friends endure many crazy conflicts, but ultimately have each other’s backs.

The first six episodes are available. Season 2 premieres on September 4.

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