When I research this feature every week, I end up seeing the scores every movie gets. I try not to look, but they’re just too prominent to ignore. One of this week’s new films is “Mayday”. The allegorical movie about women engaged in a war against men is getting tanked on IMDB. Why?
“Mayday” is getting hammered on its score for being “part white man bad”, a “childish game of misandry”, “misandrist fantasy” and my favorite: a “femalistic flop” because “theyve invented the new version of the atomic bomb, namely the #metoo threat that hangs over each and every man every hour, minute or second of the day”. But don’t worry, “the lead was pretty and on of the other brunets but that was it”. We got some real Eberts on our hands here.
The reason I bring this up is because sometimes a film that gets tanked like this on scoring sites is actually good. It’s not a guarantee, but when I see this kind of review brigading from other men, it’s often because it’s touched on a nerve in an accurate way. I covered this phenomenon in more detail on my review for Sophia Takal’s “Black Christmas” (which just returned to HBO Max in time for the holiday season).
A lot of hidden gems lose their audiences when they go to review sites, see a low score, and figure the movie must not be good. I haven’t seen “Mayday”. I can’t tell you how it is. This article is informational and a lot of the films come out the same day this feature does. What I can tell you is that I’ve been led to a lot of incisive, often-brilliant hidden gems when I see these kinds of reactions tanking a film’s score. Some are just OK, sure, but there are also a lot of very good films that get tanked and lose their audiences simply because they’re feminist. Seeing these kinds of reviews usually puts a movie at the top of my to-watch list.
Please don’t let review averages deter you from watching a film before you look more closely at the reason for their scores. Maybe “Mayday” isn’t your thing – hell, maybe it isn’t my thing – but a lot of films out there will be much better than the score belies.
showrunner Molly Smith Metzler
“Maid” is based on Stephanie Land’s 2019 memoir. It recounts the story of a single mother who leaves an abusive relationship. Alex balances intermittent, underpaid work as a house cleaner with caring for her daughter Maddy.
Showrunner Molly Smith Metzler has written and produced on “Shameless” and written on “Orange is the New Black” and “Casual”.
You can watch “Maid” on Netflix.
directed by Karen Cinorre
Ana is transported to a world that’s constantly at war. The women here are all soldiers fighting against men, but Ana can’t seem to fit in. Mia Goth and Grace Van Patten star.
This is the first feature from writer-director Karen Cinnore, who started out in set design and costume departments.
See where to rent “Mayday”.
Preparations to Be Together for an Unknown Period of Time (MUBI)
directed by Lili Horvat
Marta is a neurosurgeon. She falls in love in a whirlwind romance. She even leaves her career behind in the U.S. to move to Hungary. The only problem is when she meets her partner there, he says he’s never seen her before.
This is the second feature from Hungarian writer-director Lili Horvat after the well-received “The Wednesday Child”.
You can watch “Preparations to Be Together for an Unknown Period of Time” on MUBI.
Stop and Go (VOD)
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.
See where to rent “Stop and Go”.
The Manor (Amazon)
directed by Axelle Carolyn
Barbara Hershey plays Judith, just moved into a nursing home. She slowly becomes convinced that an inexplicable force is picking off the residents one by one. No one will believe an elderly stroke survivor, though.
Writer-director Axelle Carolyn once wrote on the history of horror movies, and she’s since moved onto directing in series like “American Horror Story”, “Creepshow”, and “The Haunting of Bly Manor”. This is her second feature.
You can watch “The Manor” on Amazon.
Black as Night (Amazon)
directed by Maritte Lee Go
Vampires are preying upon the disenfranchised of New Orleans. A band of friends spends their summer hunting these vampires down.
This is the first feature from Maritte Lee Go, who also directed a segment of “Phobias”.
You can watch “Black as Night” on Amazon.
Bingo Hell (Amazon)
directed by Gigi Saul Guerrero
When their beloved bingo hall is sold to the devil, Lupita and her elderly friends refuse to see it gentrified. With a vengeance.
Director and co-writer Gigi Saul Guerrero is a Mexican-Canadian director who’s helmed films, anthology entries, and series.
You can watch “Bingo Hell” on Amazon.
What Breaks the Ice (VOD)
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.
co-directed by Gita Pullapilly
Kristen Bell and Kirby Howell-Baptiste star as women who start a coupon fraud scam. Their operation grows faster than they can manage in this crime comedy.
Gita Pullapilly directs with Aron Gaudet as Team A + G. This is their second feature film.
You can watch “Queenpins” on Paramount Plus.
Witch Hunt (VOD)
directed by Elle Callahan
Witches and witchcraft have been made illegal in the United States. It’s up to one girl to ferry two witches to asylum in Mexico.
This is the second feature from writer-director Elle Callahan after 2018’s “Head Count”. She got her start as a sound mixer and editor.
See where to rent “Witch Hunt”.
Spring Blossom (VOD)
directed by Suzanne Lindon
A 16 year-old girl passes a theater one day. Bored with her friends, she engages an older man. She eventually becomes involved with him.
Suzanne Lindon writes, directs, and stars. She began writing the screenplay at 15 and filmed it at 20.
See where to rent “Spring Blossom”.
Take a look at new shows + movies by women from past weeks.
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