Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn (Yan, 2020): United States

Reviewed by Matheus Clorado.

Image result for birds of preyHarley Quinn is on the loose after Yan’s rebranding.

More so, Harley Quinn’s Emancipation reintroduces the icon to a more adult public following Joker‘s massive success and rumors of more Rated R DCEU installments to come. Director Cathy Yan (Dead Pigs) makes sure to bring the Christina Hodson’s script to life with heavy doses of humor and action.

Despite the immense anticipation’s pressure regarding this release, it does not leave viewers unsatisfied. Cinematically, it’s fast-paced, humorous and full of colorful visual metaphors. Harley Quinn, originally pitched by Margot Robbie to Warner Bros. in 2015, is authentic and it will be forever remembered as the pioneer feature that brought more grittyness to DC’s extended universe.

Robbie’s performance is impecable once again and for the genre’s binge-watchers’ joy, Emancipation acts both as a follow-up to Suicide Squad and an alternative step from Joker‘s accomplishments. Of course, being a clever move from its studio, it was bound to receive mixed criticism, especially about its female empowerment undertones. Important, yet not an easy task, representing women in times of revolution can be met with backlash even

Posted at 1am on 03/24/20 | no comments | Filed Under: Films read on

She’s in Portland (Carlini, 2020): United States

Reviewed by Matheus Clorado. Viewed at the SBIFF 2020.

Image result for shes in portlandA visual tribute to the Pacific Coast Highway, She’s in Portland is the stunning feature-length debut from Marc Carlini. It is an invitation to join two longtime friends Wes (Tommy Dewey) and Luke (François Arnaud) on a road trip aboard an old Bronco as they reconnect.

The characters are introduced in their element, both funny and relatable. Luke is frustrated with his job and love life so much that he distanced himself from Wes. After attending a reunion Luke missed, Wes decides to get his attention back by driving him to Portland, where his former crush now lives and appears to still hold feelings for him. Trapped in their patterns, the sense of urgency picks up and their longing for escape is well set right from the start.

In a true love quest for his friend whom he considered broken and out of touch, Wes discovers that he is also been illuding himself. Although Luke was dodging his friend’s best intentions to cheer him up, Wes has instead chose to lie about his troubles. Through dialogue, their

Posted at 9pm on 03/23/20 | no comments | Filed Under: Films, Santa Barbara Film Festival 2020 read on

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Film Review Club: Reviews of current film releases, DVDs, and revivals by student members of the SBCC Film Review Club.

Film Festival Course: FS108: Film Festival Studies: 10-days or 5-days (2 or 3 units). Field course at film festivals to study U.S. and international fiction, experimental and documentary films. Fee required.

Contact: Prof. Nico Maestu (maestu@sbcc.edu)

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