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Weekly Update for October 16: Women Centric, Directed and Written Films Playing Near You

Weekly Update for October 16: Women Centric, Directed and Written Films Playing Near You

Films About Women Opening This Week


Cate Blanchett is at the peak of her talents as producer Mary Mapes, who, along with Robert Redford as Dan Rather, takes the fall for reporting on a false memo condemning George W. Bush’s National Guard service. Mapes’ passionate investigation turns into an exploration of the high-stakes world of corporate news and presidential politics. The film has a super-interesting premise with a fantastic performance by Blanchett. (Melissa Silverstein)

Crimson Peak

In the aftermath of a family tragedy, an aspiring author (Mia Wasikowska) is torn between love for her childhood friend (Charlie Hunnam) and the temptation of a mysterious outsider (Tom Hiddleston). Trying to escape the ghosts of her past, she is swept away to a house that breathes, bleeds and remembers. (Press materials)

The Assassin 

Nie Yinniang (Shu Qi) returns to her family after several years in exile. The mission of her order is to eliminate the tyranny of the Governors who avoid the authority of the Emperor. Now she will have to choose between sacrificing the man she loves, or break definitively with the “order of the Assassins.” (Press materials)

Momentum (Also available on VOD) – Co-Written by Debra Sullivan

Alex (Olga Kurylenko), a mysterious thief, is pulled in by her former partner (James Purefoy) for one last heist. She quickly finds it was never just about the diamonds. A brutal murder sparks a cat-and-mouse chase between Alex and a master assassin. Now she must uncover the lies behind the heist and discover the secrets behind the men who have made her a target. (Press materials)

Jane B. for Agnès V. (Documentary) – Directed by Agnès Varda (Opens in NY)

“I’ll look at you, but not at the camera. It could be a trap,” whispers Jane Birkin shyly into Agnès Varda’s ear at the start of “Jane B. for Agnès V.” “It’s like an imaginary bio-pic,” says Varda. Birkin, of course, is the famed singer, actress, fashion icon (the Hermes Birkin bag) and longtime muse to Serge Gainsbourg. As Varda implies, “Jane B. for Agnès V.” abandons the traditional bio-pic format, favoring instead a freewheeling mix of gorgeous and unexpected fantasy sequences. For its first-ever U.S. theatrical release the film has been newly-restored from the original 35mm camera negative, overseen by director Varda herself. (Press materials)

Kung Fu Master! – Directed by Agnès Varda; Written by Agnès Varda and Jane Birkin (Opens in NY)

“Kung Fu Master!” has nothing to do with martial arts — the film’s title comes from an arcade video game played obsessively in the film by a teenaged boy, Julien (played by Varda’s real-life son Mathieu Demy). Jane Birkin delivers one of her finest performances as a lonely 40-year-old woman who finds herself falling in love with the 14-year-old Julien — but is it romance, or a desperate attempt to turn back time in the face of middle age? (Press materials)

The Scarapist – Written by Jeanne Marie Spicuzza (Opens October 22)

Suburban novelist, Lana (Jeanne Marie Spicuzza) becomes entangled in a web of perversity, insanity and violence by her psychotherapist, Ilse (Katy Colloton). With the help of her minions (R. Michael Gull), Ilse sets out to destroy Lana and her family. In this showdown of good versus evil, who will win? (Press materials)

Films About Women Currently Playing

Dukhtar – Written and Directed by Afia Nathaniel
The Final Girls
Big Stone Gap – Written and Directed by Adriana Trigiani
A Woman Like Me (Hybrid Documentary) – Directed by Elizabeth Giamatti and Alex Sichel; Written by Alex Sichel
A Ballerina’s Tale (Documentary)
He Named Me Malala (Documentary)
Shout Gladi Gladi (Documentary)
The Keeping Room – Written by Julia Hart 
Breathe – Written and Directed by Mélanie Laurent
The Second Mother – Written and Directed by Anna Muylaert
Learning to Drive – Directed by Isabel Coixet; Written by Sarah Kernochan
Ricki and the Flash – Written by Diablo Cody 
The Diary of a Teenage Girl – Written and Directed by Marielle Heller 
Trainwreck – Written by Amy Schumer
Inside Out
Testament of Youth -Written by Juliette Towhidi

Films Directed by Women Opening This Week

Meadowland – Directed by Reed Morano

In the hazy aftermath of an unimaginable loss, Sarah (Olivia Wilde) and Phil (Luke Wilson)  come unhinged, recklessly ignoring the repercussions. Phil starts to lose sight of his morals; Sarah takes off on a potentially disastrous journey, falling deeper into her own fever dream. (Press materials)

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Reed Morano.

Heart of a Dog (Documentary) – Written and Directed by Laurie Anderson (Opens October 21)

Renowned mul­ti­dis­ci­pli­nary artist Laurie Anderson returns with this lyrical and powerfully personal essay film that reflects on the deaths of her husband Lou Reed, her mother, her beloved dog and such diverse subjects as family memories, surveillance and Buddhist teachings. (TIFF)

The Tainted Veil (Documentary) – Co-Directed by Nahla Al Fahad (Opens in LA)

Whether a veil of the soul, the mind or the body, the layers of the veil in history and the many meanings behind it will be revealed. “Women are either judged for wearing the hijab or not wearing it” (the hijab refers to the head covering). In “The Tainted Veil,” the challenges surrounding these ideas are exposed in a debate by diverse guests and extraordinary stories. (Press materials)

Tales of Halloween (Also available on VOD) – Co-Directed and Co-Written by Axelle Carolyn

Ten stories are woven together by their shared theme of Halloween night in an American suburb, where ghouls, imps, aliens and axe-murderers appear for one night only to terrorize unsuspecting residents. (Press materials)

Films Directed by Women Currently Playing

Godspeed: The Story of Page Jones (Documentary) – Directed by Luann Barry 
In My Father’s House (Documentary) – Directed by Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg
The Intern – Written and Directed by Nancy Meyers
Mississippi Grind – Co-Directed and Co-Written by Anna Boden
Sleeping With Other People – Written and Directed by Leslye Headland
Meet the Patels (Documentary) – Co-Directed by Geeta Patel
Goodnight Mommy – Co-Directed and Co-Written by Veronika Franz
Meru (Documentary) – Co-Directed by Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelvi
Infinitely Polar Bear – Written and Directed by Maya Forbes 
The Wolfpack (Documentary) – Directed by Crystal Moselle

Films Written by Women Opening This Week

Room – Written by Emma Donoghue

Brie Larson becomes a frontrunner in the Best Actress Oscar race with “Room,” in which she plays a seven-year captive and the mother of a five-year-old boy (Jacob Tremblay) who’s never seen the world beyond the 10×10 shed where they’re held. Based on Emma Donoghue’s best-selling novel (and adapted by the author for the screen), the film finds mother and son finally making their escape back into the real world, only to find themselves on a rocky road back to normalcy. In my review for TheWrap, I wrote, “The film’s sensitive portrayal of Jack and Joy’s difficult transition…  is elevated by Larson and Tremblay’s brilliant performances. … As she did in her breakout indie ‘Short Term 12,’ Larson excels at determined despair, simultaneously evincing vulnerability and fearlessness.” (Inkoo Kang)

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Emma Donoghue.

Films Written by Women Currently Playing

Labyrinth of Lies/Im Labyrinth des Schweigens – Co-Written by Elisabeth Bartel
Straight Outta Compton – Co-Written by Andrea Berloff 
Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation – Co-Written by Laeta Kalogridis 
Jurassic World – Co-Written by Amanda Silver

VOD/DVD Releasing This Week 

Seeds of Time (Documentary) – Directed by Sandy McLeod 
The Wolfpack (Documentary) – Directed by Crystal Moselle 
Z for Zachariah

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