The Moya View

Tag: drama

  • Sundance:  The Tuba Thieves

    Sundance: The Tuba Thieves

    Plot via Sundance:A spate of robberies in Southern California schools had an oddly specific target: tubas. In this work of creative nonfiction, d/Deaf first-time feature director Alison O’Daniel presents the impact of these crimes from an unexpected angle. The film unfolds mimicking a game of telephone, where sound’s feeble transmissibility is proven as the story […]

  • Sundance:  Mami Wata

    Sundance: Mami Wata

    Plot via Sundance:In the oceanside village of Iyi, the revered Mama Efe (Rita Edochie) acts as an intermediary between the people and the all-powerful water deity Mami Wata. But when a young boy is lost to a virus, Efe’s devoted daughter Zinwe (Uzoamaka Aniunoh) and skeptical protégé Prisca (Evelyne Ily Juhen) warn Efe about unrest […]

  • Sundance:  When It Melts

    Sundance: When It Melts

    Plot via Sundance:Eva struggles with human connection. Now that her younger sister Tess is moving out, and long estranged from her neglectful parents, the fragile Eva is finally truly alone. Already reeling, she’s instinctively revulsed by a social media post announcing the memorial celebration for a long-passed childhood friend. She emotionally recalls her sensitive 13-year-old […]

  • Sundance:  Girl

    Sundance: Girl

    Plot via Sundance:Mother-daughter duo Grace and Ama have established a deep bond that’s protected them from outsiders, but as they start anew in Glasgow, things begin to change. Ama’s burgeoning puberty and curiosity set off reminders of a past that 24-year-old Grace has been running from. The comforting fairytale-like origin story that Grace has been […]

  • Sundance:  Scrapper

    Sundance: Scrapper

    Plot via Sundance:Following her mother’s death, a resourceful 12-year-old girl, Georgie (Lola Campbell), continues to live alone in their London-outskirts flat. She makes money stealing bikes with her friend, Ali (Alin Uzun), and keeps the social workers off her back by pretending to live with an uncle. It works like a charm until Jason (Harris […]

  • Sundance:  La Pecera (The Fishbowl)

    Sundance: La Pecera (The Fishbowl)

    Plot via Sundance:After years of remission, Noelia’s cancer has returned and is spreading quickly. Exhausted by relentless treatment plans and pills that do more harm than good, she seeks another way out. Brushing aside her boyfriend Jorge’s well-meaning but suffocating gestures, she heads back to Vieques, the blissful eastern Puerto Rican island where she grew […]

  • Sundance:  Mama Cruz

    Sundance: Mama Cruz

    Plot via Sundance:Devoutly religious Cruz leads a routine existence with her husband and precocious granddaughter Viky, while her daughter Carlota chases her dream of becoming a professional dancer in Vienna. A single errant click while attempting to navigate the internet momentarily exposes Cruz to online pornography. She’s mortified but suddenly reminded of her own desires. […]

  • Sundance:  Slow

    Sundance: Slow

    Plot via Sundance:Contemporary dancer Elena meets Dovydas when he is assigned to interpret via sign language in a class she is teaching to deaf youth. Their connection is immediate, kinetic, and frictionless. As they gravitate toward each other, resisting the forces and interventions of their separate daily lives, their bond deepens from platonic to romantic. […]

  • Sundance:  Bad Behaviour

    Sundance: Bad Behaviour

    Plot via Sundance:Lucy seeks enlightenment. The former child actress makes a pilgrimage to join her guru, Elon Bello (Ben Whishaw), for a silent retreat at a beautiful mountain resort with a Tesla-crammed parking lot. Before she shuts off her phone to the world, Lucy reaches out to her daughter, Dylan — a stunt person training […]

  • Sundance:  Heroic

    Sundance: Heroic

    Plot via Sundance:Eighteen-year-old Luis (Santiago Sandoval Carbajal) enlists as an infantry cadet in the Heroic Military College in the hopes of becoming an officer and supporting his struggling family. Tucked away in the mountains and surrounded by statues honoring Aztec gods, the school is constructed from giant slabs of stone and ruled by even more […]

  • Sundance:  All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt

    Sundance: All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt

    Plot via SundanceTender caresses and enveloping embraces are portals into the life of Mack, a Black woman in Mississippi. Winding through the anticipation, love, and heartbreak she experiences from childhood to adulthood, the expressionist journey is an ode to connection — with loved ones and with place. Review notes: All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt […]

  • Sundance: A Thousand and One

    Sundance: A Thousand and One

    Plot via SundanceStruggling but unapologetically living on her own terms, Inez is moving from shelter to shelter in mid-1990s New York City. With her 6-year-old son Terry in foster care and unable to leave him again, she kidnaps him so they can build their life together. As the years go by, their family grows and […]

  • Sundance:  The Starling Girl

    Sundance: The Starling Girl

    Plot via Sundance:Seventeen-year-old Jem Starling struggles to define her place within her fundamentalist Christian community in rural Kentucky. Even her greatest joy — the church dance group — is tempered by worry that her love of dance is actually sinful, and she’s caught between a burgeoning awareness of her own sexuality and an instinctive resistance […]

  • Sundance: Fair Play

    Sundance: Fair Play

    Plot via SundanceHot off the heels of their new engagement, thriving New York couple Emily (Phoebe Dynevor) and Luke (Alden Ehrenreich) can’t get enough of each other. When a coveted promotion at a cutthroat financial firm arises, supportive exchanges between the lovers begin to sour into something more sinister. As the power dynamics irrevocably shift […]

  • Sundance: Fancy Dance

    Sundance: Fancy Dance

    Plot via SundanceSince her sister’s disappearance, Jax (Lily Gladstone) has cared for her niece Roki (Isabel Deroy-Olson) by scraping by on the Seneca-Cayuga Reservation in Oklahoma. Every spare minute goes into finding her missing sister while also helping Roki prepare for an upcoming powwow. At the risk of losing custody to Jax’s father, Frank (Shea […]

  • Sundance:  Mutt

    Sundance: Mutt

    Plot via Sundance:Feña, a young trans guy bustling through life in New York City, is afflicted with an incessantly challenging day that resurrects ghosts from his past. Laundromats, subway turnstiles, and airport transfers are the hectic background to this emotional drama that overlaps past, present, and future. Settling the disharmony of transitional upheaval in relationships […]

  • Sundance:  The Accidental Getaway Driver

    Sundance: The Accidental Getaway Driver

    Plot via Sundance:Long, a Vietnamese driver in Southern California, answers a late-night call for a ride. Already in his pajamas, he reluctantly accepts, picking up a man, Tây, and his two companions. But the men, recently escaped convicts from an Orange County jail, take Long hostage at gunpoint, thrusting him into their getaway plan. When […]

  • Sundance: Magazine Dreams

    Sundance: Magazine Dreams

    Plot via SundanceKillian Maddox lives with his ailing veteran grandfather, obsessively working out between court-mandated therapy appointments and part-time shifts at a grocery store where he harbors a crush on a friendly cashier. Though Killian’s struggles to read social cues and maintain control of his volatile temper amplify his sense of disconnection amid a hostile […]

  • A Man Called Otto:  Tom Hanks Gets a Little G(r)umpy

    A Man Called Otto: Tom Hanks Gets a Little G(r)umpy

    Plot (Sony Pctures):Based on the # 1 New York Times bestseller “A Man Called Ove,” A Man Called Otto tells the story of Otto Anderson (Tom Hanks), a grump who no longer sees purpose in his life following the loss of his wife. Otto is ready to end it all, but his plans are interrupted […]

  • Missing: Google How to Overwrite a Thriller

    Missing: Google How to Overwrite a Thriller

    Plot (from Wikipedia)When her mother disappears while on vacation in Colombia with her new boyfriend, June’s search for answers is hindered by international red tape. Stuck thousands of miles away in Los Angeles, June creatively uses all the latest technology at her fingertips to try and find her before it’s too late. However, as she […]

  • “Flavors of Youth” Explores the Essentials of Identity

    “Flavors of Youth” Explores the Essentials of Identity

    Flavors of Youth points out how memory is essential to all identity. How it is the source of all art and creativity.

  • “Zama”: A Long Hard Slough About Colonial Waiting

    “Zama”: A Long Hard Slough About Colonial Waiting

    Zama is about waiting— not the Waiting for Godot or Guffman kind— but the Colonial kind, which is historical, eloquently long and wonderfully filmed, cryptically acted and so broadly elliptical that it could mean anything while seemingly meaning everything. The kind that is either literary fraud or masterwork.

  • “Summer 1993”: An Authentic Sketchbook of Childhood Grief

    “Summer 1993”: An Authentic Sketchbook of Childhood Grief

    Summer 1993 feels lived in, breathed, authentic but never nostalgic. There is not a lot of drama but plenty of life on display.

  • “Madeline’s Madeline” Isn’t Quite WTF Enough

    “Madeline’s Madeline” Isn’t Quite WTF Enough

    The titular heroine, who may or may not be going mad, is played by newcomer Helena Howard. Don’t take her disaffected scowl for serious acting. Three quarters of runway models can produce and sustain the same look.

  • “A Prayer Before Dawn” Is Pure Testosterone and Rage

    “A Prayer Before Dawn” Is Pure Testosterone and Rage

    A Prayer Before Dawn is a pure example of testosterone and rage filmmaking. It leaves you beaten down and shattered.

  • “The Rider”: The First Great Western of Our Time

    “The Rider”: The First Great Western of Our Time

    The Rider is a heartbreaking portrayal of those who can and cannot give up, of those living broken lives with broken dreams and broken hopes.

  • “Brij Mohan Amar Rahe” Is Too Squalid for Bollywood

    “Brij Mohan Amar Rahe” Is Too Squalid for Bollywood

    Brij Mohan tries to give its audience something more substantial than the usual light Bollywood fare. It ends up to squalid for that audience to watch.

  • “Blindspotting” Is There There

    “Blindspotting” Is There There

    Blindspotting is pure Oakland, pure there there. It drills down into the city’s essence and finds not just a physical place but the perfect metaphor for a divided and disenchanted America struggling and resisting change.

  • “Don’t Worry He Won’t Get Far on Foot” Doesn’t Go Far Enough

    “Don’t Worry He Won’t Get Far on Foot” Doesn’t Go Far Enough

    Sadly, Callahan’s cartoons vividly animated and sketched are receded as the art becomes background to the Oedipal drama of a son successfully overcoming his abandonment issues and alcoholism.

  • “The Warning” Is a Memento of a Beautiful Mind

    “The Warning” Is a Memento of a Beautiful Mind

    It’s a Memento meets A Beautiful Mind thriller about a Basque man who discovers that there is a mathematical correlation between a convenience store shooting tragedy and the same spot’s past, present and future.

  • “You Were Never Really Here” Is One of the Best

    “You Were Never Really Here” Is One of the Best

    Lynne Ramsey who made the hallucinogenic school violence themed fantasmagoria We Need to Talk About Kevin returns to direct after a five year hiatus. Like Kevin, Here is an impressionistic tonal assault of over saturated images, amped up acoustic exaggeration and minimalistic acting.

  • “Father of the Year” Is a Bad Dad Every Other Time

    “Father of the Year” Is a Bad Dad Every Other Time

    Adam Sandler produced Netflix movies aren’t about the quality. They are about how much stuff they can get away with, the more sexual the better. The plots are just setups for the gags. Father of the Year excuse is about an idiot long haired alcoholic father (David Spade) attempts to impress his valedictorian son that […]

  • “Damsel” Isn’t in Distress

    “Damsel” Isn’t in Distress

    Damsel is probably the best of a trio of feminist Westerns to grace the big and and small screen this year.

  • “Isle of Dogs”: Wes Anderson’s Unbearable Lightness of Being an Abandoned  Canine

    “Isle of Dogs”: Wes Anderson’s Unbearable Lightness of Being an Abandoned Canine

    The sorrowful wisdom brought by their abandonment can be heard in the dialogue (spoken in English by a talented American voice cast), a disaffected whine two hopes, a pat and a cheerful compliment removed from love.

  • “The Skin of the Wolf” Is Beneath Just Barely a Man

    “The Skin of the Wolf” Is Beneath Just Barely a Man

    There is no explanation, no backstory just observation enshrouded in mythic layers of beautiful cinematography. Everything is left to interpretation, which is both besides the point and probably is the point.

  • “Boundaries” Knows Where Those Are

    “Boundaries” Knows Where Those Are

    Boundaries implies it’s a film with no boundaries or trying to find it boundaries.

  • “The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter”: A Different Kind of Deer Hunter

    “The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter”: A Different Kind of Deer Hunter

    When the expected Deliverance moment comes it is both false and awkwardly right. They all get through the rapids not shattered, just a little bit better men, friends and maybe understanding and appreciative parent and child.

  • “Lean on Pete” Races Out the Quarter Mile of Adolescent Dreams

    “Lean on Pete” Races Out the Quarter Mile of Adolescent Dreams

    Director Andrew Haigh doesn’t elevate the story with sappy sentiments and phony triumphs. Instead he delivers an elegiac rendering of the death of childhood.

  • “King of Peking”: Father and Son Create Their Buddy Film

    “King of Peking”: Father and Son Create Their Buddy Film

    King of Peking (streaming on Netflix) proves that the best buddy films are created by fathers and sons.

  • “First Reformed”:  An Anguished Meditation on a Corrupted World.

    “First Reformed”: An Anguished Meditation on a Corrupted World.

    First Reformed is one of Schrader’s finest films. It is his redemption, and a perfect fit for his transcendental style

  • Sunday’s Illness:  Healing a Broken Mother-Daughter Bond

    Sunday’s Illness: Healing a Broken Mother-Daughter Bond

    It is all so emotionally and nakedly obvious. And that not only makes Sunday’s Illness good but near great.

  • “All I Want” Tries to Get Pass “The Big Chill”

    “All I Want” Tries to Get Pass “The Big Chill”

    All I Want, a smart little indie co-written by the actress Melissa Center and debut director West Liang, is the millennial attempt to beat The Big Chill.

  • “Hotel Artemis” tries to keep the cons conned

    “Hotel Artemis” tries to keep the cons conned

    Foul mouth and over confident gangsters, international female assassins, domestic hit men with fuckup siblings, kingpins with hot triggered heirs that have daddy inferiority complexes, a city in riot mode, and Dave Bautista channeling Drax 2X, make for an over emoting ensemble that tries to keep up with the overheated plot.

  • “Hereditary” Bringing Up the R Baby

    “Hereditary” Bringing Up the R Baby

    Hereditary is a smart reminder that the horror movie hasn’t entirely forgotten it’s past.

  • Stepping “Outside In” to Free Themselves from Their Personal Prisons

    Stepping “Outside In” to Free Themselves from Their Personal Prisons

    Every director strives for honesty, but few achieve it so sincerely as Lynn Shelton does in Outside In.