Tag Archives: Beans

New Shows + Movies by Women — February 4, 2022

There are some genuinely heavy hitters this week – I expect to be talking about Megan Park’s “The Fallout” as one of the best films of 2022. Malgorzata Szumowska may be Poland’s most important filmmaker right now, and “Never Gonna Snow Again” looks like a biting satire. Hong Kong director Heiward Mak is a crucial up-and-coming voice.

There are also filmmakers like Mohawk director Tracey Deer and Kosovan director Norika Sefa each making their debuts.

Let’s start with series first:

NEW SERIES

Pam & Tommy (Hulu)
mostly directed by women

Lily James (Disney’s most recent “Cinderella”) and Sebastian Stan (the MCU’s Winter Soldier) star as Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee. The series recounts their relationship from its start (they married 96 hours after meeting), and the impact of their infamous 1995 sex tape. Taylor Schilling, Nick Offerman, and Seth Rogen co-star.

The series is showrun by Robert Siegel, and “I, Tonya” director Craig Gillespie helms the first three episodes. After that, those last five episodes are directed by three different women. “In a World…” director (and actress/voice actress) Lake Bell directs two. “Sons of Anarchy” and “American Horror Story” director Gwyneth Horder-Payton directs another two. “A Teacher” showrunner Hannah Fidell directs one.

You can watch “Pam & Tommy” on Hulu. The first three episodes are already available, with a new one premiering every Wednesday for a total of eight.

New Gold Mountain (Sundance Now)
directed by Corrie Chen

It’s 1857, during the Australian gold rush. Tensions between Chinese and European miners come to a head when a European woman in Chinese clothing is found murdered. Yoson An plays a character loosely based on Fook Shing, the historical Chinese detective who policed the gold fields during this era.

Director Corrie Chen has directed on several Australian series.

You can watch “New Gold Mountain” on Sundance Now. All four episodes should be available immediately.

Salaryman’s Club (Crunchyroll)
directed by Aimi Yamauchi

Also known as “Ryman’s Club”, this anime follows a group of businessmen who meet up to play badminton.

Director Aimi Yamauchi has worked as an episode director and storyboard artist on “Tokyo Revengers” and “Mugen no Juunin: Immortal”.

You can watch “Salaryman’s Club” on Crunchyroll. New episodes arrive on Saturdays.

NEW MOVIES

The Fallout (HBO Max)
directed by Megan Park

I can’t think about “The Fallout” without feeling emotionally overwhelmed. It’s a brilliant film, a very early contender for best film of 2022, and it’s the best I’ve seen for engaging the issue of school shootings. My review goes into detail without spoilers.

Jenna Ortega delivers one of the most natural performances I can remember as Vada, a student who survives a gun massacre at her high school. “The Fallout” tracks her trauma in an experiential way as she desperately tries to find some place in her life where she can feel in control again.

It’s a shattering depiction of what we’ve now put three generations in a row through for no reason. It’s a very tough watch, but it’s also so human and empathetic that I’d watch it again in a heartbeat.

I missed this one in last week’s rundown. I obviously highly recommend it.

This is the first feature from writer-director Megan Park, perhaps best known for her role as Grace on “The Secret Life of the American Teenager”.

You can watch “The Fallout” on HBO Max.

Never Gonna Snow Again (MUBI)
co-directed by Malgorzata Szumowska

Zhenia is a Russian immigrant in Poland. He works as a massage therapist…until his wealthy clients begin looking to him as a guru.

This was Poland’s submission as Best International Feature for the Oscars last year. Co-writer and co-director Malgorzata Szumowska directs with her oft-cinematographer Michal Englert. Szumowska gives her films an exacting sense of purpose. I found her “The Other Lamb” to be disturbingly precise in the ways it overwhelms. She’s a commanding director everyone should watch at least once.

You can watch “Never Gonna Snow Again” on MUBI.

Beans (Hulu)
directed by Tracey Deer

“Beans” focuses on the 78-day standoff that took place between the Mohawk and Canadian government in 1990. The Kanesatake band of Mohawk had a land claim rejected on a legal technicality in 1986. In 1989, the town’s golf club decided to expand into this claim. The town did not consult the Mohawk about this.

This was just the latest in whittling down Mohawk land from an original treaty agreeing to 165 square kilometers. By 1956, just six square kilometers of this remained. (Before this, the Mohawk had first been forced to leave their land in the Hudson Valley.)

“Beans” tells the story of the Oka crisis standoff through the eyes of a young Mohawk girl. If you watch “Reservation Dogs”, it co-stars Paulina Alexis and D’Pharaoh Woon-a-Tai, two of that show’s leads.

This is Mohawk filmmaker Tracey Deer’s first narrative feature. She’s previously written and directed several documentaries, and wrote and produced on the series “Mohawk Girls” and “Anne with an E”.

“Beans” was previously available for rental, but this is the first time it’s come to a subscription service.

You can watch “Beans” on Hulu, or see where to rent it.

Fagara (OVID TV)
directed by Heiward Mak

After her father’s death, a woman discovers two previously unknown sisters. In debt and struggling to keep the family’s restaurant alive, she reaches out and begins to forge relationships with them.

Heiward Mak has written, directed, and often edited several independent Hong Kong films.

You can watch “Fagara” on OVID TV, a service that specializes in international and independent cinema.

Looking for Venera (MUBI)
directed by Norika Sefa

In this Kosovan film, Venera is a teen aching to get away from home. She shares a small house with three generations of her family, and never has any privacy.

This is the first feature from writer-director Norika Sefa.

You can watch “Looking for Venera” on MUBI.

Stop and Go (Hulu)
co-directed by Mallory Everton

Two sisters set out on a road trip to rescue their grandmother from a nursing home where COVID has broken out.

Mallory Everton directs with Stephen Meek. This is her first feature.

“Stop and Go” was previously available for rental, but this is the first time it’s come to a subscription service.

You can watch “Stop and Go” on Hulu, or see where to rent it.

Book of Love (Amazon)
directed by Analeine Cal y Mayor

Two writers find themselves drawn to each other after they’re thrown together on a Mexican book tour: the original author and the translator who drastically rewrote his novel. Veronica Echegui and Sam Claflin star.

This is the third film from director and co-writer Analeine Cal y Mayor.

You can watch it on Amazon Prime.

The Translator (VOD)
co-directed by Rana Kazkaz

In 2011, a Syrian exile lives in Australia. When he learns his brother has been taken by the Assad regime, he travels back to Syria in an attempt to free him.

Rana Kazkaz directs with Anas Khalaf. This is her first feature film.

See where to rent “The Translator”.

What Breaks the Ice (Showtime)
directed by Rebecca Eskreis

Two girls form a friendship in 1998, as their vision of their place in the world is impacted by the country’s obsession with the Monica Lewinsky scandal. When they’re invited to a rave, things go wrong and they have to defend themselves. Will the culture they live in ever believe their side of the story?

This is the first feature from writer-director Rebecca Eskreis. She got her start in production design.

You can watch “What Breaks the Ice” on Showtime, or rent it on Amazon, Apple TV, Google Play, Vudu, or YouTube.

Honey Girls (Netflix)
directed by Trey Fanjoy

Ashanti stars as Fancy G, a pop star hosting a contest to find the next big solo artist. Three contestants realize working together to form their own band helps all of them, instead of just one of them.

Trey Fanjoy is a prolific music video director, most notably for Taylor Swift. She directed “Teardrops on My Guitar”, “Our Song”, “Picture to Burn”, and “White Horse”, among others. She’s also helmed numerous music videos for Reba McEntire, Miranda Lambert, and Keith Urban. This is her first feature film.

You can watch “Honey Girls” on Netflix.

Take a look at new shows + movies by women from past weeks.

If you enjoy what you read on this site, subscribe to Gabriel Valdez’s Patreon. It helps with the time and resources to continue writing articles like this one.

New Shows + Movies by Women — November 5, 2021

There’s a lot to get into this week. I’m going to take my time going over one film in particular, which is based on an act of Mohawk resistance in 1990. I’d encourage you to please read this, or to look up the Oka Crisis. It’s an act of First Nations resistance that illustrates colonialism isn’t a thing of the past, but something that very much continues to steal real land and livelihoods away from indigenous people.

We’ll tackle series first, as always:

NEW SERIES

The Club (Netflix)
directed by Zeynep Gunay Tan

“The Club” takes place in 1950s Istanbul. A mother works at a nightclub in order to reconnect with her orphaned daughter. She hides past secrets, in a time when East and West are mixing and conflicting.

Show creator and director Zeynep Gunay Tan has worked in Turkish film and television for the last two decades.

You can watch “The Club” on Netflix.

Dalgliesh (Acorn TV)
showrunners Helen Edmundson, Jill Robertson

“Dalgliesh” is a new adaptation of the classic P.D. James mystery novels. They follow arrogant police inspector and brooding poet Dalgliesh as he engages a range of whodunnits.

Playwright Helen Edmundson essentially serves as the lead writer, with Jill Robertson taking the role of lead director. Robertson has helmed episodes on countless British series, most recently “Harlots” and “The Feed”.

You can watch the first two episodes of “Dalgliesh” on Acorn TV, with the following four arriving weekly.

The Time it Takes (Netflix)
co-showrunners Nadia de Santiago, Ines Pintor

This experimental Spanish series follows Lina, who’s attempting to forget her former partner. Episodes are just 13 minutes apiece.

Nadia de Santiago and Ines Pintor are joined by Pablo Fernandez and Pablo Santidrian as showrunners. De Santiago stars while Fernandez, Pintor, and Santidrian direct.

You can watch all 10 episodes of “The Time it Takes” on Netflix.

Head of the Class (HBO Max)
co-showrunner Amy Pocha

HBO Max enters the coming-of-age field with their own high school comedy, a reboot of the 1986 ABC series. “One Day at a Time” lead Isabella Gomez stars as a young teacher figuring out how to talk to a group of high-achieving students.

Amy Pocha showruns with Seth Cohen. She’s written and produced on “American Vandal” and “Paradise, PD”.

You can watch “Head of the Class” on HBO Max.

NEW MOVIES

Beans (VOD)
directed by Tracey Deer

“Beans” focuses on the 78-day standoff that took place between the Mohawk and Canadian government in 1990. The Kanesatake band of Mohawk had a land claim rejected on a legal technicality in 1986. In 1989, the town’s golf club decided to expand into this claim. The town did not consult the Mohawk about this.

This was just the latest in whittling down Mohawk land from an original treaty agreeing to 165 square kilometers. By 1956, just six square kilometers of this remained. (Before this, the Mohawk had first been forced to leave their land in the Hudson Valley.)

The town of Oka eventually expanded the development plan to include the complete clearing of The Pines, including a sacred Mohawk burial ground, for expansion of the golf course and the construction of 60 condominiums.

The Mohawk erected a guarded barricade in protest. Oka Mayor Jean Ouellette called in Quebec’s provisional police, which attacked with concussion grenades and tear gas. A firefight ensued, resulting in the death of an occupying police officer. The initial 30 Mohawk saw support come in from surrounding Mohawk communities, swelling up to 600. The Mohawk seized police vehicles and used the front end loader sent to tear down their barricade to crush these vehicles and form an additional one.

Another group of Mohawk established a blockade in solidarity that cut off a main bridge to the Island of Montreal. They would be attacked by commuters, who killed a Mohawk elder.

A nearby town gathered to burn a Mohawk effigy and chant “Sauvages” (savages in French).

Federal police were called in, and the Solicitor General of Quebec circumvented the Prime Minister of Canada to deploy the military. As the Mohawk surrendered and were arrested, 14-year-old Waneek Horn-Miller ran with her four year-old sister to the media barricade for safety. She would be stabbed in the chest by a Canadian bayonet.

Many Mohawk land defenders were arrested, physically beaten, prosecuted, and convicted. A few police officers were briefly suspended as a result of their violence. None were charged.

The golf course was canceled, the Canadian government paid Oka $5.3 million for the land. Ouellette was re-elected Oka’s mayor the very next year.

Waneek Horn-Miller, the 14 year-old Mohawk girl who was stabbed, would survive. She later became a member of the Canadian women’s water polo team. She helped Canada win Gold at the 1999 Pan American Games and Bronze in the 2001 World Championships. She was then dismissed from the program for what would later be revealed as the racism of coaches and teammates who wanted the Mohawk woman gone.

“Beans” tells the story of the Oka crisis standoff through the eyes of a young Mohawk girl. If you watch “Reservation Dogs”, it co-stars Paulina Alexis and D’Pharaoh Woon-a-Tai, two of that show’s leads.

This is Mohawk filmmaker Tracey Deer’s first narrative feature. She’s previously written and directed several documentaries, and wrote and produced on the series “Mohawk Girls” and “Anne with an E”.

See where to rent “Beans”.

Mark, Mary & Some Other People (VOD)
directed by Hannah Marks

Newlyweds give non-monogamy a try in order to stabilize their relationship.

Writer-director Hannah Marks is better known as an actress in “Necessary Roughness” and “Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency”. However, she’s also written “Banana Split”, and wrote and directed “After Everything”.

You can rent “Mark, Mary & Some Other People” on Google Play.

This is Not a War Story (HBO Max)
directed by Talia Lugacy

A marine connects with a group of veterans living in New York. They attempt to cope with their experiences in war through art. The film is based on real experiences and interviews.

This is writer-director Talia Lugacy’s second film after 2007 feature “Descent”.

You can watch “This is Not a War Story” on HBO Max.

Spirit Untamed (Hulu)
co-directed by Elaine Bogan

Lucky moves to a small town and befriends a horse. Determined to see her new charge Spirit returned to their family, she and her friends set out on a journey to set the horse free.

Elaine Bogan directs with Ennio Torresan. She’s previously directed in Dreamworks’ “Dragons” and “Arcadia” TV universes.

You can watch “Spirit Untamed” on Hulu.

Take a look at new shows + movies by women from past weeks.

If you enjoy what you read on this site, subscribe to Gabriel Valdez’s Patreon. It helps with the time and resources to continue writing articles like this one.