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Movie Review: THE VIGIL

THE VIGIL movie poster | ©2021 IFC Midnight

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Dave Davis, Menashe Lustig, Malky Goldman, Lynn Cohen, Fred Melamed, Ronald Cohen Writer: Keith Thomas Director: Keith Thomas Distributor: IFC Midnight Release Date: February 26, 2021 THE VIGIL, originally released theatrically in February, is now available on Hulu. Most religious horror films are based in Catholicism, Christianity, paganism, or Satanism. THE VIGIL is therefore comparatively uncommon, as it centers around Orthodox Judaism. Specifically, THE VIGIL focuses on the real-world tradition of having a Shomer, or watchman, sit with the corpse of a newly deceased person. The Shomer recites prayers intended to comfort the deceased’s soul and ward […]Read On »

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LINE OF DUTY: Creator Jed Mercurio on Season 6 – Exclusive Interview

Kelly Macdonald is Joanne Davidson in LINE OF DUTY - Season 6 | ©2021 World Productions/Steffan Hill

LINE OF DUTY is now streaming its sixth season on Britbox in the U.S., with new episodes dropping on Tuesdays. (All five previous seasons are available.) When the Season Six finale of LINE OF DUTY ran on the BBC earlier this year, it was the highest-rated show in the U.K. of the twenty-first century. Viewers of LINE OF DUTY will easily understand the appeal. The twist-filled police drama, which aired its first season in 2012, deals with an internal affairs division, called “anti-corruption” or “AC” in England. LINE OF DUTY follows one such department in the English Midlands, AC-12, tasked […]Read On »

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GENERATION: Actress Nathanya Alexander on Season 1 – Exclusive Interview

Actress Nathanya Alexander | photo courtesy Jill Fritzo PR

GENERATION – the logo is GENERA+ION – premieres the second half of its first season on HBO MAX on Thursday, June 17. Created by the daughter/father team of Zelda and Daniel Barnz, GENERATION follows a group of contemporary Southern California high school students as they deal with issues of growing up, sexuality, friendship, family matters and more. Nathanya (pronounce Nah-THAN-ya) Alexander plays Arianna, the extroverted daughter of two fathers (played by John Ross Bowie and J. August Richards). In the first half of Season 1, we see Arianna making homophobic jokes, which she justifies by pointing out her gay parents. […]Read On »

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Movie Review: QUEEN OF SPADES

QUEEN OF SPADES movie poster | ©2021 Epic Pictures

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Ava Preston, Kaelen Ohm, Jamie Bloch, Daniel Kash, Eric Osborne, Nabil Rajo, Krista Marchand Writers: Patrick White, John Ainsley, story by Svyatoslav Podgaevskiy Director: Patrick White Distributor: Dread Release Date: June 11, 2021 QUEEN OF SPADES is an entry in the subgenre of horror in which a demonic entity is summoned by chanting its name into a mirror. The Queen is a figure out of Russian folklore (as explained in the film), much like Bloody Mary is for Americans. This QUEEN OF SPADES is a new American remake of the 2015 Russian film QUEEN OF SPADES: THE […]Read On »

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THE CHI: Actress Jasmine Davis gives the scoop on Season 4 – Exclusive Interview

Jasmine Davis as Imani in THE CHI - Season 4 - "Native Son" | ©2021 Showtime/Elizabeth Sisson

THE CHI is now in its fourth season, Sunday nights on Showtime. Created by Lena Waithe, THE CHI is set on the south side of Chicago, and follows the intertwined lives of a number of families. Best friends Kevin Williams (Alex R. Hibbert), Stanley “Papa” Jackson (Shamon Brown Jr.), and Jake Taylor (Michael Epps) are now in high school. Kevin and Papa have stable home lives. Jake’s is considerably more complicated. Jake was being raised by his brother Reg (Barton Fitzpatrick), a gang member who was ultimately assassinated on orders from his boss, Otis “Douda” Perry (Curtiss Cook). Douda wants […]Read On »

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Movie Review: THE CONJURING: THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT

THE CONJURING: THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT Movie Poster | ©2021 Warner Bros./New Line Cinema

Rating: R Stars: Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Ruairi O’Connor, Sarah Catherine Hook, Julian Hilliard, John Noble, Eugenie Bondurant, Shannon Kook, Keith Arthur Bolden, Ashley LeConte Campbell Writer: David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick, story by James Wan & David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick, based on characters created by Chad Hayes & Carey W. Hayes Director: Michael Chaves Distributor: Warner Bros./New Line Cinema Release Date: June 4, 2021 THE CONJURING: THE DEVIL MADE ME DO IT is the third film in the CONJURING franchise (if one doesn’t count the ANNABELLE movies, THE CURSE OF LA LLORONA, and whatever they’re doing next with THE NUN). Based on […]Read On »

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Movie Review: CHANGING THE GAME

CHANGING THE GAME poster | ©2021 Hulu

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Mack Beggs, Sarah Rose Huckman, Andraya Yearwood Writers: Michael Barnett, Amanda Griffin, Michael Mahaffie Director: Michael Barnett Distributor: Hulu Release Date: June 1, 2021 CHANGING THE GAME, a documentary, begins with a training session for a young man, Mack Beggs. Mack has a deep voice, facial hair – and is the state champion for female high school wrestling. In Texas, the law insists that students must compete as the gender listed on their birth certificate. This is profoundly frustrating to Mack, who wants to compete against other boys. It also causes a ton of verbal and […]Read On »

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BALLERINA BOYS: Directors Chana Gazit and Martie Barylick on new AMERICAN MASTERS documentary – Exclusive Interview

Trocks performing "Swan Lake" in AMERICAN MASTERS - BALLERINA BOYS | ©2021 PBS

BALLERINA BOYS, a documentary about the all-male comedy ballet troupe Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, airs on AMERICAN MASTERS on PBS Friday, June 4. Founded in 1974, the Trocks, as they are affectionately known, put a humorous spin on classical ballets, with company members performing the female roles in drag. BALLERINA BOYS is directed and produced by Martie Barylick and Chana Gazit. Gazit has been a documentary filmmaker for thirty-five years. Among her multiple awards wins are Emmys for 2005’s SLAVERY AND THE MAKING OF AMERICA, THE PILL on PBS’s 1988 AMERICAN EXPERIENCE, and 1991’s HONORABLE NATIONS. Barylick, who […]Read On »

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LES BALLETS TROCKADERO DE MONTE CARLO: Artistic Director Tory Dobrin on new documentary – Exclusive Interview

Dancer Duane Gosa in AMERICAN MASTERS - BALLERINA BOYS | ©2021 PBS

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, often just called the Trocks, have been entertaining audiences since 1974. The Trocks are an all-male dance troupe that performs classical ballets – SWAN LAKE, GISELLE, etc. – in drag, with a comedic attitude and exquisite technical skill. AMERICAN MASTERS on PBS is presenting a documentary about the Trocks, BALLERINA BOYS, on Friday, June 4. Tory Dobrin, the current artistic director of the Ballets Trockadero, previously danced with the company himself (his ballerina name was Margot Lowenoktaine) from 1980 through the mid-‘90s. A California native who moved to New York, Dobrin talks in an […]Read On »

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Movie Review: THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW

THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW movie poster | ©2021 Netflix

Rating: R Stars: Amy Adams, Gary Oldman, Julianne Moore, Anthony Mackie, Fred Hechinger, Wyatt Russell, Brian Tyree Henry, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Jeanine Serralles, Mariah Bozeman, Tracy Letts Writer: Tracy Letts, based on the novel by A.J. Finn Director: Joe Wright Distributor: Netflix/20th Century Studios Release Date: May 14, 2021 THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW isn’t shy about referencing the film REAR WINDOW. There’s a clip from the latter at the beginning of the former. Our protagonist, Anna Fox (Amy Adams), is an old movie buff, among other things. Her viewing choices provide a few clues as to what’s going on. […]Read On »

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