Exclusive Interview: “Lady Buds” Director Chris J. Russo

By Joan Amenn Last year at the Hot Docs International Film Festival, I was blown away by a debut film called “Lady Buds” (2021) (My review can be found here: https://intheirownleague.com/?s=Lady+Buds.) I am so honored that I got to speak to director Chris J. Russo just before the big premiere of “Lady Buds” on STARZ streaming service this week. We talked about the film, the … Continue reading Exclusive Interview: “Lady Buds” Director Chris J. Russo

Review: Ammonite

Year: 2020 Runtime: 120 minutes Writer/Director: Francis Lee Stars: Kate Winslet, Saoirse Ronan, Gemma Jones, James McArdle, Fiona Shaw  By Nicole Ackman With a starry cast and a fascinating premise, “Ammonite” has garnered much attention from the moment it was announced. The period drama is written and directed by Francis Lee and loosely inspired by the life of British paleontologist Mary Anning. The film revolves … Continue reading Review: Ammonite

Happy Birthday To Céline Sciamma

The wonderful Céline Sciamma will be celebrating her birthday on the 12th November and if you’re familiar with our site then you know that we are HUGE fans of her work. For this piece, we want to discuss her career and celebrate her filmography and how she’s taking on the French film industry and its sexism. She may have only directed four feature films and one short, but Sciamma has already established herself as one of the icons of female filmmaker history. Her unique perspective and story-telling have helped to create engaging conversations with critics and cinephiles alike. Continue reading Happy Birthday To Céline Sciamma

Scottish Queer International Film Festival: Ashley

“Ashley” is the winner of the 2019/2020 Margaret Tait Award and is surprisingly complex for being a short film. Director Jamie Crewe, who also wrote and stars, gives an at times disorienting immersion into the mind of a deeply agonized and despondent soul. “Ashley” is brilliant in the use of sound to convey the inner turmoil of the title character’s struggle to affirm their identity. Continue reading Scottish Queer International Film Festival: Ashley

SQIFF Review: Lingua Franca

Writer, director, and actor Isabel Sandoval’s “Lingua Franca” (2020) is an emotional, romantic drama that breaks new ground for Filipinx and transgender representation. Set in Trump’s America, the film is both timely and timeless. Olivia (Isabel Sandoval) is a Filipina trans woman living in Brooklyn, NY. There, she takes care of an elderly Russian woman, Olga (Lynn Cohen) and her grandson Alex (Eamon Farren). Throughout the feature, there are reminders of the impact of Trump’s presidency including ICE raids and strict, ever-changing immigration policies. Capturing America under the 45th president, “Lingua Franca” is extremely well-timed. Yet, the issues Olivia faces have long been struggles for trans women of color, making the film as timeless as it is timely. Continue reading SQIFF Review: Lingua Franca

SQIFF Review: Pride & Protest

Year: 2020 Runtime: 90 Minutes Director: Blaise Singh By Tom Moore Creating a film that lets multiple voices and stories be heard loud and clear within the LGBTQ+ community, director Blaise Singh guides viewers through a search for pride and understanding with his first feature documentary, “Pride & Protest,” now screening at the Scottish Queer International Film Festival (SQIFF). In the wake of Birmingham protests … Continue reading SQIFF Review: Pride & Protest

Take One Action Film Festival: “Pier Kids”

Year: 2019Runtime: 84 minutesDirector: Elegance Bratton By Joan Amenn To fully appreciate “Pier Kids,” it helps to know some of the history of lower Manhattan in New York City. Chelsea Pier is walking distance from Christopher Street, where the Gay Rights Movement of the 1970’s took place. Also located there is the Stonewall Inn, the site of the June 1969 riots, hence why Gay Pride … Continue reading Take One Action Film Festival: “Pier Kids”

Pride Month, Retrospective Review: Pain & Glory (Dolor y gloria)

There’s growth all around “Pain & Glory” (2019), personal, universal, and out with the film itself, and while there is an overarching narrative, Pedro Almodóvar’s film is as equally about his self journey as it is Salvador Mallo’s back and forth throughout life. A story of pleasure, it is Almodóvar after all, this film accounts for the lost opportunities, the rekindled friendships and plunges back into life, rebutting the dark stupors of depression, isolation and a rejection of the self – all in favour to produce a methodical, grim film which seeks as much enjoyment it can from the struggles of life. Continue reading Pride Month, Retrospective Review: Pain & Glory (Dolor y gloria)

Review: Disclosure

“Disclosure” is a vital, near-perfect documentary on transgender representation in film and television that is one of the most singularly cathartic viewing experiences that I as a trans person have ever experienced. Sam Feder, along with every interviewee and participant in this production (including Laverne Cox, Chaz Bono and Angelica Ross) discuss trans issues with maturity and without feeling the need to spoon-feed the basics to cis audiences. This is a film that assuages all my fears that I ask too much of the world by wanting more media made BY trans people FOR trans people. Continue reading Review: Disclosure