Summer Begins with Netflix’s ‘Ibiza’

By Olivia Norwood, Edited by Julia Wilson

Last year, female audiences were presented with films like Girls Trip and the absolutely terrible Rough Night. Although only one of them was watchable, they both have something in common – they’re both about female road trips.

Netflix took some notes from last year and has presented us with its new comedy Ibiza.

A New York publicist (Gillian Jacobs) goes on a business trip with her two best friends (Vanessa Bayer and Phoebe Robinson) to Barcelona that quickly turns into a romantic chase for a hunky DJ (Richard Madden) performing in – yes, you guessed it – Ibiza.

Everything in this movie is what you would expect. There’s envious party scenes, sexy Spanish men, girls getting themselves into crazy situations, and a surplus of drugs. More specifically, Bayer taking a small bag of Adderall and burning 4,000 calories on an elliptical.

It’s a perfect film for the start of the summer and doesn’t involve a superhero saving the universe. It’s adventurous, romantic, and filled with EDM without being obnoxious, and its messages are nothing short of “living in the moment”. This flick is everything that a millennial would want in a summer movie (and a trip that they couldn’t afford).

So, grab your girlfriends and watch Ibiza on a night in or a night out. It’ll give you a laugh and maybe even some inspiration for your next girls trip.


My Rating: 81%

Acting: 3/4

Cinematography: 3/4

Story: 3/4

Enjoyability:4/4

Advertisements

Film Forecast Friday: May 25th

On Friday, May 25th we have…

Solo: A Star Wars Story

Mary Shelley

Future World

The Gospel According to Andre

Liv’s Prediction:

The easiest prediction here is that Solo: A Star Wars Story will be the biggest movie to be released this weekend, as the others are more indie. Already starting out with a 70% on Rotten Tomatoes and many mixed reviews from Star Wars fans (mostly negative), Solo will without a doubt have people rushing to see it.

Mary Shelley, starring the lovely Elle Fanning, should be a big one amongst the non-blockbuster crowd. Personally, I am excited to see this dark and different role for the already acclaimed Fanning. I don’t expect it to do wonders at the box office but, it just might surprise me.

Onto the documentary that many, including myself, are excited for – The Gospel According to André. The legendary André Leon Talley will have doc lovers and fashion enthusiasts racing to see this film. It won’t do crazy at the box office, as most documentaries don’t, but it will be a hit amongst the fashion capitals of the world.

Therese’s Prediction:

Considering this weekend is not a big week for the movies, Solo: A Star Wars Story will undeniably be the biggest hit of the weekend. It is a much anticipated film solely about the character Hans Solo from the Star Wars franchise. Hopefully, it will be a top-grossing film for the week as the other films will likely not be.

While Mary Shelley may not be a hit amongst the A-lister movie crowd, it may well sure be a hit for movie lovers of a different category whether as a lover of romance or drama. Among other things, this will be the first Hollywood film directed by a Saudi Arabian woman, Haifaa Al-Mansour. I will definitely be among the crowd of people in attendance for this film.

Future World, starring James Franco, appears to be a B-level movie with a top-rated cast. Not entirely sure how well this film will do this weekend, and regardless I will not be one waiting to watch. As a science fantasy film, it’s not really in a genre I particularly care for.

Lastly, The Gospel According to André, as a documentary film explores the life of longtime Vogue editor André Leon Talley. Hopefully, the film is not a pitiful representation of his interesting life. Regardless, I am still excited for this film to premiere, as it very well may be a compelling film.

‘Disobedience’: Religion and Sexual Repression

By Olivia Norwood, Edited by Julia Wilson

LGBT storylines in film have become increasingly popular due to its Academy Award winning predecessors Moonlight and Call Me By Your Name and the new drama Disobedience follows in their path.

Set in an Orthodox Jewish community, New York photographer Ronit (Rachel Weisz) goes back home for her Rabbi father’s funeral but finds herself rekindling with her old flame, Esti (Rachel McAdams) – who is also married to their Rabbi childhood friend, David (Alessandro Nivola).

Living in a one-sided relationship is hard enough as it is but when you add the complexity of hiding one’s sexuality. Ronit has the freedom of living however she feels while Esti is trapped in an unaccepting community where everyone knows what goes on behind closed doors.

This relationship was different than the others. Where Call Me By Your Name is more erotic and lustful, Disobedience is sentimental and heartbreaking.

These two women have been in love since their youth but their environment continuously tears them apart and manipulates the way they live. And the way it affected the husband and/or third party is much more meaningful and real.

Along with acting being its strongest quality, the story was just as powerful and special.

Disobedience gave a quintessential look at human feelings, not desires. It’s simple and refined while dealing with the complexities of love and living in a benighted world.


My Rating: 80%

Acting: 3.8/4

Cinematography: 3/4

Story: 3/4

Enjoyability: 3/4

‘Book Club’ is the Romantic Comedy that Older Viewers Deserve

By Olivia Norwood, Edited by Julia Wilson

While romantic comedies seem to be limited to the 30 and under crew, there are those few films that connect with an audience that deserves more love than it’s given.

Book Club, starring Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton, Mary Steenburgen, and Candice Bergen, offers a new look at the stereotype that the 50+ don’t have sex when four women in a book club reevaluate their love lives after reading 50 Shades of Grey.

Even though this is a regular romantic comedy, it also makes its audience question how we portray older men and women on screen and whether or not the film industry should be tapping into this kind of an audience.

As I walked into the theatre to see this movie, the entire audience was over 50 years old. Of course I’m just speculating there but generally that demographic doesn’t regularly go to the movies unless it’s something that they can relate to.

So why not make films that connect with all audiences?

Book Club challenges the stereotypes that falling in love is restricted to the 20 year olds and allows its viewers to see themselves on-screen with positivity and liveliness.


My Rating: 75%

Acting: 2.8/4

Cinematography: 2.7/4

Story: 3/4

Enjoyability: 3.5/4

‘Step Sisters’: Throwing Together College Trash

By Anthony Peyton, Edited by Olivia Norwood

Step Sisters is a new original Netflix film with a 25% on Rotten Tomatoes. That, at least for me, says it all… but I gave it a chance. Unfortunately, that chance wasn’t worth it.

This is a movie that makes an attempt at combining stereotypes about race, gender, and college sororities to develop what the writers called a teen comedy. It’s a triple whammy that nobody asked for and nobody wants to see.

Don’t get me wrong, I can see where they attempted to make it work. They had characters who were having trouble with their own self identity and characters who wanted to embrace their self identity but couldn’t. This attempt crashed when they put it up against moments of blatant racial stereotyping, which just isn’t funny anymore in the society we live in unless it’s done with purpose.

Jamilah (played by Megalyn Echikunwoke, CSI: Miami), Beth (Eden Sher, The Middle), and Dane (Matt McGorry, How to Get Away With Murder) play three of the main characters, and were the strongest out of the cast. However, that’s not saying much because none of them were at their strongest performance by any means.

Sher seems to be stuck playing the same role in every production she appears in while McGorry is consistently losing his eye for good entertainment, which is a sad thing to me, as I really enjoyed him in How To Get Away from Murder.

On the whole, I did not like this movie and would suggest spending your time watching funnier teen comedies like Edge of Seventeen and Netflix’s very recent Dude. The acting wasn’t pristine or even good and the teen comedy it attempted to be just blew up on more than one occasion.

If I could give any advice to teen comedies in the future, steer away from race jokes every thirty seconds unless it actually needs to be said. Step Sisters just took it too far.


My Rating: 35%

Acting: 1.7/4

Cinematography: 1/4

Story: 1.7/4

Enjoyability: 1.3/4

‘Breaking In’: A New Kind of Movie Mom

By Olivia Norwood, Edited by Therese Gardner

Happy Mother’s Day! Today, we celebrate and praise all of the matriarchs in this world which also includes our movie moms. Coming in on time for the holiday is the new action and thriller Breaking In where we live through a mother’s worst fear and realize that they are (literally) unstoppable.

Warning to all moms: don’t see this movie unless you’re stable in your own paranoia.

Breaking In features Gabrielle Union as the dedicated mother who is locked out of a house while three possible killers hold her children hostage. The film wastes no time in getting to this point, as it happens almost 10 minutes in.

Aside from the intensity, let’s talk about how refreshing it is to see a mother single-handedly be the hero. Let’s be real, we all know that if this happened to any other mom then they’d fight until their own last breath, but to have it shown in a film makes you appreciate all of the little things she does for you.

Gabrielle Union pulls off the revenge-driven performance we all hoped for based off of the trailer. Cinema always depicts mothers as fragile, soft-spoken, and gentle. Well, this mom doesn’t mess around. She kicks ass and refuses to be manipulated. Union’s character definitely takes the cake this year as best movie mom.

But, Union herself is one of the only women this year whose acting doesn’t consist of using her sexuality as a weapon. Though it does make for an interesting character, its overplayed. Watching a movie use her actual strength, wits, and motivation as a weapon is a good change that I wish the rest of Hollywood would take notes on and use.

Breaking In is fresh in story and exhilarating in action. It proves that actresses are more than just their stereotypes and that being a mother is more than just its title.

Film Forecast Friday: May 11th

On Friday, May 11th, we have….

  1. Breaking In
  2. Life of the Party
  3. Terminal
  4. The Seagull
  5. The Assassin’s Code

Liv’s Prediction:

The biggest movies opening this weekend have got to be Melissa McCarthy’s Life of the Party and Gabrielle Union’s Breaking In. One’s an action/thriller and the other a comedy both starring strong female leads. Without question, these films will do numbers at the box office.

Two other films starring female leads are Margot Robbie’s Terminal and Soairse Ronan’s The Seagull. Two indies with Academy Award nominated actresses – likely to be a hit amongst regular moviegoers, like myself.

Lastly, the new Justin Chatwin action film The Assassin’s Code might just end up being one of those movies you’re likely to see end up on Netflix after a week in theatres because no one knew it existed.

Therese’s Prediction:

Without a doubt, Life of the Party, starring Melissa McCarthy, will be the biggest film of the weekend. McCarthy never seems to disappoint when it comes to making people laugh, as she always exudes a certain underlying lighthearted charm within the characters she performs. Another big hit for the weekend will be Gabrielle Union’s Breaking In, as she fights for her family’s survival. With two strong, talented female leads headlining the biggest movies of this weekend, it sure will be an enjoyable weekend at the box office.

The next two films to premiere this weekend feature a couple of incredibly talented award nominated actresses. Terminal, starring Margot Robbie, and The Seagull, starring Soairse Ronan and Annette Bening, will definitely be a crowd favorite among movie viewers of all ages. This makes for a weekend filled with powerful and compelling female roles, which I am all here for.

The final movie of the weekend, The Assassin’s Code, starring Justin Chatwin is a crime thriller detective story that many people are probably unaware of and as a result will likely fall short at the box office with lower than expected views and poor ratings.