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Poly Styrene: I am a Cliché

In 1976, Marion Elliott-Said – a Somali-English teenager from London – formed a band.  That band, called X-Ray Spex, would quickly become one of the most distinct groups to emerge from the fledgling punk scene.  Marion, in her front-woman persona as Poly Styrene, broke into an industry that was overwhelmingly white and overwhelmingly male, paving the way for other female musicians and women of colour.  Many credit her with laying the foundations for what would,…

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Try Harder!

Lowell High School is the top-ranked public high school in San Francisco.  In a world where everyone is a straight-A student, Lowell seniors are stressed out, scrambling to secure places in the country’s top universities and balancing overwhelming pressure from their families and communities.

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The Scary of Sixty-First

Until recently, when she was cast in the third season of HBO’s hit series Succession, Dasha Nekrasova was one of those niche internet celebrities that enjoys considerable notoriety in select circles while remaining virtually unknown in the larger public consciousness.  She is perhaps best known as the co-host of the popular left-leaning podcast, Red Scare.  Much like her podcast, Nekrasova’s debut directorial feature is calculated to invite controversy.  Brash and antagonistic, The Scary of Sixty-First…

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Benedetta

Set in 17th century Italy, and based on real people and events, writer/director Paul Verhoeven’s latest feature, Benedetta, is the story of a nun from a wealthy family (Virginie Efira) who experiences vivid, and highly erotic, religious visions.  After a pretty young novice named Bartolomea (Daphne Patakia) arrives at the convent, Benedetta’s visions become more intense and attract the attention of local religious leaders – threatening the sexual and romantic relationship that is beginning to…

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Nine Days

Written and directed by Edson Oda, Nine Days is a metaphysical film that follows a lonely man named Will, played by Winston Duke (Black Panther, Us), who is tasked with interviewing human souls and deciding which one will be given a chance to live.  One soul in particular, Emma (Zazie Beetz), is an independent thinker who resists the tasks Will assigns and forces him to examine his own existence.