“Girls of the sun,” Eva Husson’s retelling of the Kurdistan girl fighter batallion

Golshifteh Farahani, Emmanuelle Bercot and Zübeyde Bulut
Directed by Eva Husson

Bahar (Golshifteh Farahani) is commander of the Daughters of the Sun battalion in Kurdistan. They are preparing to free her city from the hands of Islamists and find her son who is behind enemy lines. A French journalist on assignment in the area, Mathilde (Emmanuelle Bercot, of "Mon Roi" fame, among others), joins their platoon to cover the offensive and help bring the spotlight on these women ... more >


“Trial by fire,” or when the Texas penal system is put under the microscope for negligence

Jack O’Connell, Laura Dern and Emily Meade
Directed by Edward Zwick

“Trial by Fire” is the true story of the unlikely bond that developped between a death row inmate (Jack O'Connell) and a mother of two from Houston (Laura Dern) who, although she faced great odds, fought hard for his freedom. Cameron Todd Willingham, a poor, uneducated heavy metal devotee with a violent streak and a criminal record, was convicted of arson-related triple homicide in 1992. During ... more >


“Photograph,” a made-in-Bombay fairytale

Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Sanya Malhotra, Farrukh Jaffar and Deepak Chauhan
Directed by Ritesh Patra

She’s a young, well-educated and well-to-do woman studying to become an accountant. He is poor, works as a street photographer, comes from the countryside and is, in the eyes of his grandmother, too old to find another woman (but hope, it springs eternal, yadi yadi yada). They meet on the streets of Bombay. And thus begins Ritesh Batra's new film "Photograph," an(other) impossible love story, one ... more >


“Rafiki,” a Kenyan tale of sapphic love

Samantha Mugatsia, Neville Misati and Nice Githinji
Directed by Wanuri Kahiu

“Rafiki,” which comes out on Friday, was directed by Wanuri Kahiu. The Nairobi-born director (b. 1980) has just one other feature-length film under her belt, “From a whisper.” She’s new on the scene, young(er) and taking risks. In “Rafiki” Kena (Samantha Mugatsia) and Ziki (Sheila Munyiva) eye each other from across the street, with a mixture of suspicion and attraction. The former is thin like ... more >


In “The Wind,” tricks of the mind in the old West, demons and prairie madness

Miles Anderson, Caitlin Gerard and Julia Goldani Telles
Directed by Emma Tammi [Soapbox Films]

"The Wind" is the first fiction feature film by Emma Tammi, a filmmaker thus far known for her documentary film work. The inspiration for the film is real, however, and comes from a true story told in the newspapers left behind by women suffering from prairie madness, a common affliction amid European farmers come to colonize the American west in the 1800s. "The Wind" was adapted by Teresa ... more >


“Los Silencios,” dead or alive, it matters little, let us exist

Marleyda Soto, Enrique Diaz and María Paula Tabares Peña
Written, produced and directed by Beatriz Seigner

Fleeing Colombia and the FARC conflict after her husband died a woman and her two children arrive on an island named Fantasia located in the middle of the Amazon. This place sits at the crossroads of Colombia, Peru and Brazil, without belonging to any of those countries. It's a mysterious outpost in a kind of netherworld where the dead and the alive coexist. They can now look for the deceased ... more >

“Aquarela,” a lyrical experience that ties humankind to water

Produced by Aimara Reques, Heino Deckert, Sigrid Dyekjaer
Directed by Victor Kossakovsky

“Aquarela” takes the viewer through visual imagery using the attaching beauty of water. It stands as reminder that humans are no match for the brute force and whimsy of earth’s most precious element. From the frozen waters of Russia’s Lake Baikal to Miami in the throes of Hurricane Irma to Venezuela’s mighty Angel Falls, water is “Aquarela’s main character, with director Victor Kossakovsky ... more >