Movies to See in New Orleans This Week 1/17/19 – 1/23/19

Here’s a quick rundown of the movies we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week.

Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)

Glass M. Night Shyamalan continues the off-kilter superhero mythology he established in Unbreakable & Split (is that still considered a spoiler?) in a third, already critically divisive chapter. Split was one of Swampflix’s favorite films of 2017 and Shyamalan was already on a creative upswing with The Visit before that, so this surprisingly rapid follow-up definitely has our attention.

The Seven Year Itch (1955) The Billy Wilder romcom that gifted us the iconic image of Marilyn Monroe pinning down the skirt of her white dress while standing on a gusty subway grate. Also features an animated credits sequence from legendary graphic designer (and Phase IV director) Saul Bass, which is always a treat. Playing Sunday 1/20 & Wednesday 1/23 as party of Prytania’s Classic Movies series.

Movies We Already Enjoyed

The Favourite  Yorgos Lanthimos follows up the stubbornly obscure The Killing of a Sacred Deer with his most accessible feature yet: a queer, darkly funny costume drama about a three-way power struggle between increasingly volatile women (Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz). It’s both a gorgeous laugh riot and a pitch-black howl of unending cruelty & despair. Fun!

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – In the abstract, the concept of a 2010s CG animation Spider-Man origin story sounds dreadful. In practice, prankster screenwriter Phil Lord explodes the concept into a wild cosmic comedy by making a movie about the world’s over-abundance of Spider-Man origin stories (and about the art of CG animation at large). Spider-Verse is a shockingly imaginative, beautiful, and hilarious take on a story & a medium that should be a total drag, but instead is bursting with energetic life & psychedelic creativity.

-Brandon Ledet

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#52FilmsByWomen 2018 Ranked & Reviewed

When I first learned of the #52FilmsByWomen pledge in late 2016, I was horrified to discover that I hadn’t reached the “challenge’s” quota naturally that year, despite my voracious movie-watching habits. Promoted by the organization Women in Film, #52FilmsByWomen is merely a pledge to watch one movie a week directed by a woman for the entirety of a year. It’s not at all a difficult criteria to fulfill if you watch movies on a regular routine, but so much of the pop culture landscape is dominated by (white) male voices that you’d be surprised by how little media you typically consume is helmed by a female creator until you actually start paying attention to the numbers. Having now taken & fulfilled the #52FilmsByWomen two years in a row, I’ve found that to be the exercise’s greatest benefit: paying attention. I’ve found many new female voices to shape my relationship with cinema through the pledge, but what I most appreciate about the experience is the way it consistently reminds me to pay attention to the creators I’m supporting & affording my time. If we want more diversity in creative voices on the pop media landscape, we need to go out of our way to support the people already out there who work outside the white male hegemony. #52FilmsByWomen is a simple, surprisingly easy to fulfill gesture in that direction.

With this pledge in mind, I watched, reviewed, and podcasted about 59 feature films directed by women in 2018. The full inventory of those titles can be found on this convenient Letterboxd list, which includes all the re-watches of the batch. For the purposes of this article, I’ll only list the feature-length movies I saw for the first time last year, which serendipitously totaled a clean 52. Each film is ranked & linked to a corresponding review, since I was using the pledge to influence not only the media I was consuming myself, but also the media we cover on the site. My hope is that this list will not only function as a helpful recap for a year of purposeful movie-watching, but also provide some heartfelt recommendations for anyone else who might be interested in taking the pledge in 2019. It’s an experience I highly recommend, as I got so much out of it myself that I’ve already started a new Letterboxd list for my third year of participation.

5 Star Reviews

The Gleaners & I, dir. Agnes Varda (2001) – “I can’t believe that there was this succinct of a summation of my personal philosophies as a silly-ass, trash-obsessed punk idealist in my youth floating around in the ether and I completely missed it until now. I went into The Gleaners & I respecting Varda as a kind of mascot for unfussy, D.I.Y cinema with a genuine subversive streak, but left it believing her to be more of a kindred spirit, someone who truly gets what it means to live among the capitalist refuse of this trash island Earth.”

Dirty Computer, dir. Emma Westenberg, Lacey Duke (2018)

4.5 Star Reviews

Working Girls, dir. Lizzie Borden (1986) –Working Girls is often darkly funny, but it is first & foremost dark, depicting even the most privileged corners of sex work as an inherently exploitative industry hinged on power, greed, and violence. Whether that criticism is aimed at sex work in particular or capitalism at large is up for interpretation (I assume it’s a healthy dose of both), as the brothel setting of Working Girls is essentially the entirety of capitalism in an apartment-sized microcosm. I don’t think I’ve ever before seen a film with this much sex play as aggressively unerotic as what’s on display here, resulting in what’s basically a horror film about the hour-to-hour mundanity of sex work (and, by extension, all labor under capitalism), a slow burn creep-out & a low-key political screed.”

You Were Never Really Here, dir. Lynne Ramsay (2018)

Faces Places, dir. Agnès Varda (2017)

Dogfight, dir. Nancy Savoca (1991)

Flames, dir. Josephine Decker (2018)

Shirkers, dir. Sandi Tan (2018)

The Adventures of Prince Achmed, dir. Lotte Reiniger (1926)

4 Star Reviews

Good Manners, dir. Juliana Rojas (2018) – “On a horror movie spectrum, the film is more of a gradual, what-the-fuck mind melt than a haunted house carnival ride with gory payoffs & jump scares at every turn. It’s an unconventional story about unconventional families, one where romantic & parental anxieties are hard to put into words even if they’re painfully obvious onscreen. Anyone with a hunger for dark fairy tales and sincerely dramatic takes on familiar genre tropes are likely to find a peculiar fascination with the subtle, methodical ways it bares its soul for all to see. Just don’t expect the shock-a-minute payoffs of a typical monster movie here; those are entirely secondary, if they can be detected at all.”

Ratcatcher, dir. Lynne Ramsay (2000)

Blockers, dir. Kay Cannon (2018)

Le Bonheur, dir. Agnès Varda (1965)

The Hitch-Hiker, dir. Ida Lupino (1953)

Mamma Mia!, dir. Phyllida Lloyd (2008)

Thou Was Mild and Lovely, dir. Josephine Decker (2014)

Butter on the Latch, dir. Josephien Decker (2013)

The To Do List, dir. Maggie Carey (2013)

Skate Kitchen, dir. Crystal Moselle (2018)

Sheer Madness, dir. Margarethe von Trotta (1983)

Revenge, dir. Coralie Fargeat (2018)

Blue My Mind, dir. Lisa Brühlmann (2018)

United Skates, dir. Tina Brown, Dyana Winkler (2018)

Double Agent 73, dir. Doris Wishman (1974)

3.5 Star Reviews

Morvern Callar, dir. Lynne Ramsay (2002) – Morvern Callar feels less like an original screenplay than it does like a feature film adaptation of a crumpled-up Polaroid Ramsey found in a sewer. Along with a fearless performance from indie movie mainstay Samantha Morton, Ramsey’s direction & scum-coated visual language capture a very specific phase of soul-crushing grief: the stage where you stumble in total shock, only emerging from drunken stupors long enough to pray for the release of death.”

Madeline’s Madeline, dir. Josephine Decker (2018)

Toni Erdmann, dir. Maren Ade (2016)

Variety, dir. Bette Gordon (1983)

Zama, dir. Lucrecia Martel (2018)

Tigers Are Not Afraid, dir. Issa López. (2018)

Trouble Every Day, dir. Claire Denis (2001)

The New Romantic, dir. Carly Stone (2018)

Saving Face, dir. Alice Wu (2005)

Let the Corpses Tan, dir. Hélène Cattet (2018)

Never Goin’ Back, dir. Augustine Frizzel (2018)

Blank City, dir. Celine Danhier (2010)

Generation Wealth, dir. Lauren Greenfield (2018)

The Spy Who Dumped Me, dir. Susanna Fogel (2018)

The Breadwinner, dir. Nora Twomey (2017)

Alaska is a Drag, dir. Shaz Bennett (2018)

Grace Jones: Bloodlight & Bami, dir. Sophia Fiennes (2018)

3 Star Reviews

Somewhere, dir. Sofia Coppola (2010) – “This is a deliberately simple, quiet work that scales back Coppola’s ambitions after the go-for-broke excess of Marie Antoinette, one that mirrors the listless emptiness of its the-price-of-fame protagonist. As a result, it would be easy to dismiss the film as a lazy act of pretension, but Coppola’s too tonally & visually skilled as an artist to let it sit that way. This may be the most underwhelming film in her catalog to date, but it’s also quietly sweet & charming in a way too few movies are, which is why she’s one of the best.”

Summer of ’84, dir. Anouk Whissell (2018)

The Miseducation of Cameron Post, dir. Desiree Akhivan (2018)

Mary Queen of Scots, dir. Josie Rourke (2018)

Marie Curie: The Courage of Knowledge, dir. Marie Noëlle (2017)

A Wrinkle in Time, dir. Ava DuVernay (2018)

Nailed It, dir. Adele Pham (2018)

Would Not Recommend

Woodshock, dir. Kate Mulleavy, Laura Mulleavy (2017)

Imitation Girl, dir. Natasha Kermani (2018)

Romy & Michelle: In the Beginning, dir. Robin Schiff (2005)

Rabbit Test, dir. Joan Rivers (1978)

-Brandon Ledet

CC’s Top Films of 2018

1. Dirty Computer – A feature-length series of music videos from Janelle Monáe that combine to tell the story of a dystopian future society where non-conforming others are captured to have their memories & identity erased. On the surface, it’s just one of the most visually lush works of artistic beauty in recent memory. Beyond that, it’s fiercely queer, femme, and black – the most defiant, punk thing you can be in modern times.

2. Sorry to Bother You – Remarkably well executed despite the sheer number of ideas it throws in your face, especially in how it handles its brazen, astonishing third-act rug pull. Still, its most impressive feat is how it captures the moment we’re currently struggling through, but somehow finds a way to make it even worse.

3. The Favourite – The costume drama & the Yorgos Lanthimos dark comedy wrestle each other in this tale of two women wrestling for their queen’s affections. I’m always onboard for costume dramas for their visual treats alone, but they are rarely as adventurous in storytelling or tone as this stunning examination of power, aggression, and desire.

4. The Wild Boys – An erotic fever dream that’s part Guy Maddin, part William S. Burroughs, and part Treasure Island adventurism. Its visual experimentation, transgressive gender politics, and surreal depictions of sexual violence achieve an unusually focused version of imaginative dream logic.

5. Cam – The best horror film of 2018 is set in a digital world where identity is no longer stable or protectable. Its subversive politics will have you cheering for a sex worker to return safely to her profession instead of being punished for her supposed sins, which is sadly rare for the genre.

6. Eighth Grade – Holds up remarkably well on rewatches in terms of basic technical craft. The performances, editing, music, and narrative are all in service of a concise, precise story about something most modern audiences can relate to: anxiety. Following an actual 8th grader as she relives our past moments of unbearable anxiousness, we both identify with her all too well and feel a desperate need to protect her from the world.

7. Beast – A repressed young woman from a semi-abusive home falls in love with a mysterious stranger who may not be as harmless as he initially seems. There really aren’t enough modern takes on the Gothic romance, especially not enough that compete with this one’s plunges into Wuthering Heights levels of darkness.

8. Mandy – The scene where Mandy is violently abducted, involuntarily dosed with psychedelic drugs, and expected to bask in the splendor of her abuser but instead laughs loudly in his face is an incredibly cathartic moment to witness as a woman.

9. You Were Never Really Here – Narratively mimics the plot of a Taken-style thriller where a macho man rescues a young girl in crisis, but filters that formula through Lynne Ramsay’s very peculiar sensibilities, becoming a much stranger beast as a result. This is a powerful film about the tolls violence takes on its enactors & its witnesses, tracking the many ways it can destroy a soul.

10. Annihilation – The fact that this is its own creature separate from its source material novel is partly what makes it a fitting adaptation, since it’s a story about transformation and change. It’s also remarkable that it’s the third sci-fi film featuring Tessa Thompson on my list, making her the clear MVP of the year.

-CC Chapman

Movies to See in New Orleans This Week 1/10/19 – 1/16/19

Here’s a quick rundown of the movies we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week.

Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)

If Beale Street Could Talk – Barry Jenkins follows up his Best Picture winner Moonlight with an adaptation of a James Baldwin novel set in 1970s Harlem. From what I can tell without spoiling it for myself, it appears to be brimming with gorgeous costumes, sensual romance, and a seething indictment of America’s inherently racist system of “justice.” Looks heavy, but emotionally powerful.

Hale County This Morning, This Evening Fine art photographer RaMell Ross sets his gorgeous portraits of impoverished Southern lives in motion in his debut feature as a documentarian. The Ogden Museum of Southern Art will be screening the film for free on Friday 1/11, followed by a The Dismantling of Southern Poverty panel discussion with Ross & other artists on Saturday, 1/12.

Saboteur (1942) A film noir spy thriller directed by Alfred Hitchcock, featuring a co-writing credit from Dorothy Parker. Playing Sunday 1/13 & Wednesday 1/16 as party of Prytania’s Classic Movies series.

Movies We Already Enjoyed

The Favourite  Yorgos Lanthimos follows up the stubbornly obscure The Killing of a Sacred Deer with his most accessible feature yet: a queer, darkly funny costume drama about a three-way power struggle between increasingly volatile women (Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz). It’s both a gorgeous laugh riot and a pitch-black howl of unending cruelty & despair. Fun!

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – In the abstract, the concept of a 2010s CG animation Spider-Man origin story sounds dreadful. In practice, prankster screenwriter Phil Lord explodes the concept into a wild cosmic comedy by making a movie about the world’s over-abundance of Spider-Man origin stories (and about the art of CG animation at large). Spider-Verse is a shockingly imaginative, beautiful, and hilarious take on a story & a medium that should be a total drag, but instead is bursting with energetic life & psychedelic creativity.

Escape Room – The first significant release of 2019 is essentially the ideal version of Saw, with all the nasty torture porn & (most of) the nu-metal removed for optimal silliness. All storytelling logic & meaningful character work are tossed out the window in favor of full, head-on commitment to an over-the-top, truly preposterous gimmick, making for some delicious early-January trash.

-Brandon Ledet

Movies Screening in New Orleans This Week 1/3/19 – 1/9/19

Here’s a quick round-up of the movies we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week.  In case you can’t tell, we’re starting to get into that glorious time of the year where Oscar Hopefuls trickle down South from NY & LA while dirt-cheap genre films simultaneously get dumped into wide-release. It’s a very satisfying, weirdly incongruous overlap.

Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)

If Beale Street Could Talk Barry Jenkins follows up his Best Picture winner Moonlight with an adaptation of a James Baldwin novel set in 1970s Harlem. From what I can tell without spoiling it for myself, it appears to be brimming with gorgeous costumes, sensual romance, and a seething indictment of America’s inherently racist system of “justice.” Looks heavy, but emotionally powerful.

Escape Room Whether it’s “Truth or dare?,” Pokémon Go, or CandyCrush, it seems like there’s always an early-in-the-year horror release waiting to exploit a silly game or novelty fad for cheap, goofy scares. This year, the random topic generator landed on escape rooms, which should be as good for a dumb-fun time at the movies as anything.

Mortal Engines A steam punk action-fantasy epic about warring cities on wheels. Appears to fall halfway between Howl’s Moving Castle & Mad Max: Fury Road.  I doubt it’s half as good as either of those comparison points, but it looks impressively silly and this is likely its last week on local big screens.

Movies We Already Enjoyed

All About Eve (1950) – A classic Big Studio melodrama starring Bette Davis as an aging Broadway star who must fight to maintain her profession & fame in the face of a power-hungry fan who intends to usurp her. It won an impressive six Academy Awards in its day (including Best Picture) and is as excellent of a Bette Davis acting showcase as any you’ll see. Playing Sunday 1/6 & Wednesday 1/9 as part of Prytania’s Classic Movies series.

The Favourite  Yorgos Lanthimos follows up the stubbornly obscure The Killing of a Sacred Deer with his most accessible feature yet: a queer, darkly funny costume drama about a three-way power struggle between increasingly volatile women (Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz). It’s both a gorgeous laugh riot and a pitch-black howl of unending cruelty & despair. Fun!

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – In the abstract, the concept of a 2010s CG animation Spider-Man origin story sounds dreadful. In practice, prankster screenwriter Phil Lord explodes the concept into a wild cosmic comedy by making a movie about the world’s over-abundance of Spider-Man origin stories (and about the art of CG animation at large). Spider-Verse is a shockingly imaginative, beautiful, and hilarious take on a story & a medium that should be a total drag, but instead is bursting with energetic life & psychedelic creativity.

-Brandon Ledet

Movies Screening in New Orleans This Week 12/27/18 – 1/2/19

Here’s a quick round-up of the movies we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week, including one of the most grotesque films of the year and one of the greatest films of all time.

Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)

Border A Swedish fantasy-horror about a twisted creature-on-creature romance. This is supposed to be one of the most divisive, what-the-fuck cinematic freak-outs of the year, a repulsive nightmare. So why not watch it in public with fellow squirming weirdos? Only playing at Zeitgeist.

Roma – Alfonso Cuarón’s black & white period-piece epic & personal memoir is all but guaranteed to be a major Oscar contender in the next few months, but most people will only have a chance to see it at home on Netflix. We’re one of the few cities where audiences can fully immerse themselves in its lush cinematography & meticulously detailed sound design on the big screen. Only playing at The Broad Theater.

Mary Queen of Scots Saoirse Ronan & Margot Robbie square off in a not-quite-historically-accurate costume drama directed by a legitimate mainstay of the British stage.  The reviews are generally positive, and this seems like the exact kind of buttoned-up period piece that earns Oscars attention, but that’s not why I’m excited. I just like to watch actors play Queen Elizabeth I, because it’s a role that invites them to chew scenery while dressed like a maniac, and I’m sure Margot Robbie is up for the task.

Movies We Already Enjoyed

Citizen Kane (1941) – It’s near impossible to live up to the hype of being The Greatest Film of All Time, but Citizen Kane does a damn good job of it. Here’s a pull-quote from when I reviewed it for my Roger Ebert Film School series a couple years ago: “It’s tempting to label Citizen Kane as the first modern film, the birth of an auteurist fever that wouldn’t fully take hold of the industry until the New Hollywood movement got rolling three decades later. Citizen Kane’s punishing rhythm and hands-off-the-handlebars fragmentation feels strikingly modern even at today’s standards.” Playing Sunday 12/30 & Wednesday 1/2 as part of Prytania’s Classic Movies series.

The Favourite  Yorgos Lanthimos follows up the stubbornly obscure The Killing of a Sacred Deer with his most accessible feature yet: a queer, darkly funny costume drama about a three-way power struggle between increasingly volatile women (Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz). It’s both a gorgeous laugh riot and a pitch-black howl of unending cruelty & despair. Fun!

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse In the abstract, the concept of a 2010s CG animation Spider-Man origin story sounds dreadful. In practice, prankster screenwriter Phil Lord explodes the concept into a wild cosmic comedy by making a movie about the world’s over-abundance of Spider-Man origin stories (and about the art of CG animation at large). Spider-Verse is a shockingly imaginative, beautiful, and hilarious take on a story & a medium that should be a total drag, but instead is bursting with energetic life & psychedelic creativity.

-Brandon Ledet

Movies to See in New Orleans This Week 12/20/18 – 12/27/18

Here’s a quick round-up of the films we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week, including a new potential Christmas classic.

Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)

Anna and the Apocalypse A Scottish, Christmas-themed horror musical about the zombie apocalypse. Critics have positively received the film as bloody, over-the-top mash-up of Glee & Shaun of the Dead, but the true draw here is its arrival in time for Christmas. Why watch Home Alone or It’s a Wonderful Life for the thousandth time when you could watch a new, campy, gleefully violent horror comedy about the Yuletide undead? Only playing at The Broad Theater.

Roma Alfonso Cuarón’s black & white period-piece epic & personal memoir is all but guaranteed to be a major Oscar contender in the next few months, but most people will only have a chance to see it at home on Netflix. We’re one of the few cities where audiences can fully immerse themselves in its lush cinematography & meticulously detailed sound design on the big screen. Only playing at The Broad Theater.

Movies We Already Enjoyed

The Favourite Yorgos Lanthimos follows up the stubbornly obscure The Killing of a Sacred Deer with his most accessible feature yet: a queer, darkly funny costume drama about a three-way power struggle between increasingly volatile women (Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz). It’s both a gorgeous laugh riot and a pitch-black howl of unending cruelty & despair. Fun!

Widows Academy Award-winning director Steve McQueen cashes in some of his prestige points to make a heist picture about a group of ordinary women who reluctantly transform into violent criminals, a collaboration with Gone Girl writer Gillian Flynn. I was surprised by how much of his one functions like an ensemble cast melodrama instead of the action-thriller that was advertised. Not disappointed, just surprised. It feels like a movie custom built for people whose all-time favorite TV show is still The Wire, which, who could blame ‘em? Only playing at AMC Westbank, likely its last week on local big screens.

-Brandon Ledet

Movies to See in New Orleans this Week 12/13/18 – 12/19/18

Here’s a quick round-up of the films we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week. After nearly a month of there being little to recommend, the mysterious distribution gods are actively trying to drown us. There’s so much to see!

Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)

The Favourite Yorgos Lanthimos follows up the stubbornly obscure The Killing of a Sacred Deer with what appears to be his most accessible feature yet: a queer, darkly funny costume drama about a three-way power struggle between increasingly volatile women (Olivia Colman, Emma Stone, and Rachel Weisz). This is the one film I feel like I must see before contributing to any Best of the Year lists; it looks like a gorgeous riot.

Roma Alfonso Cuarón’s black & white period-piece epic & personal memoir is all but guaranteed to be a major Oscar contender in the next few months, but most people will only have a chance to see it at home on Netflix. We’re one of the few cities where audiences can fully immerse themselves in its lush cinematography & meticulously detailed sound design on the big screen. Only playing at The Broad Theater.

The Big Easy (1986) – A big-budget erotic thriller starring Dennis Quaid & Ellen Barkin, shot on location in 1980s New Orleans.  Come for the hot & steamy criminal-world intrigue; stay for the documentary glimpses of 80s New Orleans locales like Tipitina’s, Antoine’s, Mardi Gras parade float warehouses, and French Quarter strip clubs. Screening Thursday 12/13 at The Prytania Theatre.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – Spider-Man & CG animation are two filmmaking arenas I usually don’t care about at all, but there’s a lot of promise in the screenwriting involvement of Phil Lord (Clone High, Last Man on Earth, The Lego Movie) and the movie’s Ben-Day dots visual design. Its high critical scores (99% on Rotten Tomatoes, 85 on Metacritic) also suggest that it’s something worthy of my time, despite my genre biases.

Movies We Already Enjoyed

Female Trouble (1974) – Divine might not have ever gotten those cha-cha heels she wanted from Santa and John Waters may never make the gay Christmas movie Fruitcake that he wrote, but you can still celebrate XXX-Mas with the Dreamlanders this weekend with a drag-themed screening of Female Trouble.  Drag performers Puddin’ Tain, Titibaby, Squirt Reynolds and Tarah Cards will host a rowdy midnight screening of the film (with the pre-show starting at 11) Saturday 10/15 at the AllWays Lounge (as an unofficial afterparty for the performance of A John Waters Christmas at the Civic).

Vox Lux Natalie Portman stars as an off-the-rails pop star in the middle of a spectacular breakdown in the public spotlight. A lot of people are going to hate this, but I was really won over by it when we caught it at NOFF. It’s brutal and coldly funny like a Lanthimos film, but also absurdly earnest like a Mommie Dearest melodrama. It’s interesting as a philosophical indictment of modernity, but also just a perverse joy in watching a woman behave monstrously (and dance to Sia songs) without repercussion. Bold, alienating stuff – the mother! of 2018.

Widows  Academy Award-winning director Steve McQueen cashes in some of his prestige points to make a heist picture about a group of ordinary women who reluctantly transform into violent criminals, a collaboration with Gone Girl writer Gillian Flynn. I was surprised by how much of his one functions like an ensemble cast melodrama instead of the action-thriller that was advertised. Not disappointed, just surprised. It feels like a movie custom built for people whose all-time favorite TV show is still The Wire, which, who could blame ‘em?

Jim Henson’s Holiday Special (1977, 1984) – A Yuletide, Muppet-themed double feature of Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas and The Bells of Fraggle Rock, two beloved Jim Henson holiday classics. Screening Sunday 12/16 via Fathom Events.

-Brandon Ledet

Episode #71 of The Swampflix Podcast: #NOFF2018

Welcome to Episode #71 of The Swampflix Podcast! For our seventy-first episode, Brandon and CC review the overwhelming list of oddball films they caught at this year’s New Orleans Film Fest: shorts, documentaries, and narrative features. Enjoy!

You can stay up to date with our podcast through SoundCloudSpotifyiTunesStitcherTuneIn, or by following the links on this page.

– CC Chapman & Brandon Ledet

Movies to See in New Orleans this Week 12/5/18 – 12/12/18

Here’s a quick rundown of the movies we’re most excited about that are screening in New Orleans this week.

Movies We Haven’t Seen (Yet)

Mirai – A tender animated drama about a young child’s jealousy of his newly arrived baby sister that eventually transforms into a time & space defying fantasy adventure, boosted by Miyazaki-style anime artistry.  Screening Saturday 12/8 via Fathom Events.

Creed II – I’m not much of a sports movie fanatic, but Ryan Coogler’s 2015 boxing drama Creed was enough of a knockout to punch past my genre biases and knock me on my ass.  It’s one of a very select few sports movies I can think of that made me weep instead of lulling me to sleep. Coogler is not involved with this scrappier follow-up, but reviews have mostly been positive and supporting actor Tessa Thompson is already in three of my favorite releases of the year (Annihilation, Dirty Computer, and Sorry to Bother You), so it still seems to be worth a look.

Movies We Already Enjoyed

Widows  Academy Award-winning director Steve McQueen cashes in some of his prestige points to make a heist picture about a group of ordinary women who reluctantly transform into violent criminals, a collaboration with Gone Girl writer Gillian Flynn. I was surprised by how much of his one functions like an ensemble cast melodrama instead of the action-thriller that was advertised. Not disappointed, just surprised. It feels like a movie custom built for people whose all-time favorite TV show is still The Wire, which, who could blame ‘em?

Overlord– This is less the Nazi Zombie Movie tedium delivered in Dead Snow than it is an over-the-top descendant of Re-Animator, reinterpreted as a WWII video game. It’s cartoonish schlock with a big studio budget behind it – a deliriously fun, cathartic middle finger to the Nazi grotesqueries of the modern world. Only screening at Canal Place, likely its final week on local big screens.

-Brandon Ledet