Weekly Update for July 17: Women Centric, Directed, and Written Films You Can Watch from Home

“Black Lives Matter”


Carmilla – Written and Directed by Emily Harris

Fifteen-year-old Lara (Hannah Rae) lives with her father and her strict governess, Miss Fontaine (Jessica Raine), in total isolation and is struggling to find an outlet for her curiosity and burgeoning sexuality. When a carriage crash nearby brings a young girl into the family home to recuperate, Lara is enchanted by the eponymous Carmilla (Devrim Lingnau). The pair strike up a passionate relationship, which strikes fear into the heart of Miss Fontaine and a complex emotional triangulate emerges between the three women. Local rumors of an evil supernatural presence fuel Miss Fontaine’s concern for Lara’s well-being and with the exhortation of the family doctor, Fontaine seeks to put an end to the relationship for good. Inspired by the Gothic vampire novel of the same name.

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Emily Harris.

“Carmilla” is now available via virtual cinemas. Find screening info here.

Blessed Child (Documentary) – Directed by Cara Jones; Written by Cara Jones, Jean Kawahara, and Josh Alexander

“Blessed Child”

I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that I never really bothered to think about any individual members the Unification Church, founded by Reverend Sun Myung Moon. To me, the Moonies were just an amorphous group of people who really needed to snap out of it, use their brain, and get a life. Cara Jones challenges assumptions like mine in her first feature, “Blessed Child.” Jones and her brothers were raised in Unification Church and while they have left, their parents are still high-ranking members. The doc sees Jones and her brother Bow unpacking their childhood and struggling to reconcile the lives they now live with what the church taught them. Cara, for example, felt her marriage, which was arranged by Moon, was a mistake even during her wedding. A decade later, she’s divorced and embarking on single parenthood with very mixed feelings. I still see the Moonies as a cult, but because of “Blessed Child,” I recognize why people are drawn to it — and why some members feel the need to leave. Jones’ film ultimately offers a personal, specific take on faith, family, and how the two can collide. (Rachel Montpelier)

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Cara Jones.

“Blessed Child” is now available on VOD.

Flannery (Documentary) – Directed by Elizabeth Coffman and Mark Bosco 

“Flannery”: Emory University

Winner of the first-ever Library of Congress/Lavine/Ken Burns Prize for Film, “Flannery” is the lyrical, intimate exploration of the life and work of author Flannery O’Connor, whose distinctive Southern Gothic style influenced a generation of artists and activists. With her family home at Andalusia — the Georgia farm where she grew up and later wrote her best known work — as a backdrop, a picture of the woman behind her sharply aware, starkly redemptive style comes into focus.

“Flannery” is now available via virtual cinemas. Find screening info here.

A Nice Girl Like You – Written by Andrea Marcellus 

Based on a true story, “A Nice Girl Like You” follows Lucy Neal (Lucy Hale), a violinist who is thrown for a loop when she is dumped by her boyfriend after he accuses her of being “pornophobic.” In order to prove him wrong, Lucy creates a rather wild sex-to-do list, sending her and her best friends (Mindy Cohn, Jackie Cruz, and Adhir Kalyan) on a whirlwind and hysterical journey of self-discovery, friendship, and new love.

“A Nice Girl Like You” is now available on VOD.

The Sunlit Night – Written by Rebecca Dinerstein Knight

“The Sunlit Night”: Sundance Institute

“The Sunlit Night” follows an aspiring painter (Jenny Slate) from New York City to the farthest reaches of Arctic Norway for an assignment she hopes will invigorate her work and expand her horizons. In a remote village, among the locals, she meets a fellow New Yorker (Alex Sharp), who has come in search of a proper Viking funeral only to find that the Chief (Zach Galifianakis) is but a re-enactor from Cincinnati. The eclectic crew ranges from “home” to “lost,” within the extreme and dazzling landscape of the Far North. Under a sun that never quite sets, and the high standards of an unforgiving mentor, Frances must navigate between ambition, desire, obligation, and risk in order to find a way forward.

“The Sunlit Night” is now available on VOD.


“Law”: PRK Productions

“Law” is the moving struggle of a female law student (Ragini Prajwal) fighting her own case to put a criminal behind bars. The plot further evaluates whether she really received justice by getting the criminal punished.

“Law” is now available on Amazon Prime.

Holy Trinity – Written and Directed by Molly Hewitt

Trinity (Molly Hewitt) is an independent, sex-positive millennial working as a dominatrix in Chicago. After an incident huffing her drug of choice — a mysterious aerosol can from the ubiquitous Glamhag brand — she finds herself with a newfound gift for speaking to the dead. Confused and more than a little curious about this strange turn of events, Trinity seeks the counsel of a colorful cast of characters, from priests and drag queens to a witch and more, all of whom teach her their unique spiritual practices.

“Holy Trinity” will be available on VOD July 21. Find screening info here.


“The Old Guard”: Netflix

MILF – Directed by Axelle Laffont; Written by Axelle Laffont and Jean-François Halin (Netflix)

Fatal Affair – Written by Rasheeda Garner and Peter Sullivan (Netflix)

Coven – Directed by Margaret Malandruccolo; Written by Lizze Gordon (VOD)

Clementine – Written and Directed by Lara Jean Gallagher (VOD)

A Girl from Mogadishu – Written and Directed by Mary McGuckian (Showtime On Demand)

Widow of Silence (Virtual Cinemas)

Olympia (Documentary) (Virtual Cinemas)

Relic – Directed by Natalie Erika James; Written by Natalie Erika James and Christian White (VOD)

The Old Guard – Directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood (Netflix)

The Beach House (Shudder)

The Truth (VOD)

Desperados – Directed by LP; Written by Ellen Rapoport (Netflix)

House of Hummingbird – Written and Directed by Bora Kim (Virtual Cinemas)

The Audition – Directed by Ina Weisse; Written by Ina Weisse and Daphne Charizani (Virtual Cinemas)

Denise Ho: Becoming the Song (Documentary) – Directed by Sue Williams (Virtual Cinemas)

Scheme Birds (Documentary) – Written and Directed by Ellen Fiske and Ellinor Hallin (VOD)

Beyond Driven (Documentary) – Written and Directed by Riyaana Hartley and Vincent Tran (VOD)

Suzi Q (Documentary) (VOD)

A Regular Woman – Directed by Sherry Hormann (Virtual Cinemas)

Ella Fitzgerald: Just One of Those Things (Documentary) (Virtual Cinemas)

(In)Visible Portraits (Documentary) – Written and Directed by Oge Egbuonu (Vimeo)

Miss Juneteenth – Written and Directed by Channing Godfrey Peoples (VOD)

Babyteeth – Directed by Shannon Murphy; Written by Rita Kalnejais (VOD)

Diana Kennedy: Nothing Fancy (Documentary) – Directed by Elizabeth Carroll (VOD)

Tape – Written and Directed by Deborah Kampmeier (VOD)

Queen of Lapa (Documentary) – Directed by Carolina Monnerat and Theodore Collatos (Virtual Cinemas)

Jack & Yaya (Documentary) – Directed by Jennifer Bagley and Mary Hewey (VOD)

My Darling Vivian (Documentary) (Virtual Cinemas)

The Short History of the Long Road – Written and Directed by Ani Simon-Kennedy (VOD)

My First and Last Film (Documentary) – Directed by Tracey Thomas (Virtual Cinemas)

Marona’s Fantastic Tale – Directed by Anca Damian; Written by Anca Damian and Anghel Damian (Virtual Cinemas)

My Father the Spy (Documentary) (VOD)

Shirley – Directed by Josephine Decker; Written by Sarah Gubbins (Hulu, Virtual Cinemas)

Judy & Punch – Written and Directed by Mirrah Foulkes (VOD)

A New Color: The Art of Being Edythe Boone (Documentary) – Directed by Marlene “Mo” Morris (VOD)

Advocate (Documentary) – Directed by Rachel Leah Jones and Philippe Bellaiche; Written by Rachel Leah Jones (VOD)

Born in Evin (Documentary) – Directed by Maryam Zaree (VOD)

The High Note – Directed by Nisha Ganatra; Written by Flora Greeson (VOD)

Papicha – Directed by Mounia Meddour; Written by Mounia Meddour and Fadette Drouard (Virtual Cinemas)

Ursula von Rydingsvard: Into Her Own (Documentary) (Virtual Cinemas)

On the Record (Documentary) – Directed by Amy Ziering and Kirby Dick; Written by Amy Ziering, Sara Newens, and Kirby Dick (HBO Max)

Lucky Grandma – Directed by Sasie Sealy; Written by Sasie Sealy and Angela Cheng (Virtual Cinemas)


Father Soldier Son (Documentary) – Directed by Leslye Davis and Catrin Einhorn 

“Father Soldier Son”: Marcus Yam/The New York Times

This intimate documentary from The New York Times follows a former platoon sergeant and his two young sons over almost a decade, chronicling his return home after a serious combat injury in Afghanistan. Originating as part of a 2010 project on a battalion’s year-long deployment, reporters-turned-filmmakers Catrin Einhorn and Leslye Davis stuck with the story to trace the long-term effects of military service on a family. At once a verité portrait of ordinary people living in the shadow of active duty and a longitudinal survey of the intergenerational cycles of military service, “Father Soldier Son” is a profound and deeply personal exploration of the meaning of sacrifice, purpose, duty, and American manhood in the aftermath of war.

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Leslye Davis and Catrin Einhorn.

Father Soldier Son” is now available on Netflix.

Well Groomed (Documentary) – Directed by Rebecca Stern

“Well Groomed”: Cattle Rat Productions

“Well Groomed” spends a year immersed in the visually-stunning and humorous world of competitive creative dog groomers. It reveals that, no matter where or how, an innate passion for imaginative expression is universal.

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Rebecca Stern.

“Well Groomed” will be available on VOD July 21.

The Remix: Hip Hop X Fashion (Documentary) – Directed by Lisa Cortes and Farah X; Written by Lisa Cortes, Farah X, Emil Wilbekin, and Andrew Mer

“The Remix: Hip Hop X Fashion”: Dove Clark

This documentary is the story of how hip hop changed fashion, leading to the stratospheric and global rise of street wear. It is a journey of African American creativity and the limitless possibilities of a cultural movement on a global scale.

“The Remix: Hip Hop X Fashion” will be available on Netflix July 22.


A Deadly Legend – Directed by Pamela Moriarty (VOD)

First Cow – Directed by Kelly Reichardt; Written by Kelly Reichardt and Jonathan Raymond (VOD)

Ai Weiwei: Yours Truly (Documentary) – Directed by Cheryl Haines and Gina Leibrecht (Virtual Cinemas)

Mucho Mucho Amor: The Legend of Walter Mercado (Documentary) – Directed by Cristina Costantini and Kareem Tabsch (Netflix)

John Lewis: Good Trouble (Documentary) – Directed by Dawn Porter (Virtual Cinemas and VOD)

One Thousand Stories: The Making of a Mural (Documentary) – Directed by Tasha Van Zandt (Virtual Cinemas)

Elliott Erwitt: Silence Sounds Good (Documentary) – Directed by Adriana Lopez Sanfeliu (Virtual Cinemas)

Narrowsburg (Documentary) – Directed by Martha Shane (VOD)

Under the Riccione Sun – Written by Caterina Salvadori, Enrico Vanzina, and Ciro Zecca (Netflix)

Mr. Jones – Directed by Agnieszka Holland; Written by Andrea Chalupa (VOD)

Dads (Documentary) – Directed by Bryce Dallas Howard (Apple TV )

Yummy – Written by Eveline Hagenbeek and Lars Damoiseaux (Shudder)

Seahorse: The Dad Who Gave Birth (Documentary) – Directed by Jeanie Finlay (VOD)

Parkland Rising (Documentary) – Directed by Cheryl Horner McDonough (Virtual Cinemas)

Searching Eva (Documentary) – Directed by Pia Hellenthal (VOD)

The Infiltrators (Documentary) – Directed by Cristina Ibarra and Alex Rivera (Virtual Cinemas, VOD)


Cursed (Premieres July 17 on Netflix)

“Cursed”: Netflix

Armed with mysterious powers and a legendary sword, young rebel Nimue (Katherine Langford) joins forces with charming mercenary Arthur (Devon Terrell) on a mission to save her people.

The Alienist: Angel of Darkness (Premieres July 19 on TNT)

“The Alienist: Angel of Darkness”

This season, Sara (Dakota Fanning) has opened her own private detective agency and is leading the charge on a brand-new case. She reunites with Dr. Kreizler (Daniel Brühl), the formidable alienist, and John Moore (Luke Evans), now a New York Times reporter, to find Ana Linares, the kidnapped infant daughter of the Spanish Consular. Their investigation leads them down a sinister path of murder and deceit, heading towards a dangerous and elusive killer. As in “The Alienist,” the series shines a light on the provocative issues of the era – the corruption of institutions, income inequality, yellow press sensationalism, and the role of women in society – themes that still resonate today.

We Are the Radical Monarchs (Documentary) – Directed by Linda Goldstein Knowlton (Premieres July 20 on PBS)

“We Are the Radical Monarchs”

Meet the Radical Monarchs, a group of young girls of color on the frontlines of social justice. Set in Oakland, California, the film documents the journey of the group as they earn badges for completing units on such subjects as being an LGBTQ ally, preserving the environment, and disability justice. We follow the two founders as they face the challenge to grow the organization, before and after the 2016 election.

Read Women and Hollywood’s interview with Linda Goldstein Knowlton.


(From left to right) Summers, Bryant and Meryl: Association of Women Drivers

Aurora Guerrero and More Launch First Latinx Directors Database

Nicole Kassell to Direct “Silver Seas,” Story of Women Reporters Exposing Slavery in Fishing Industry

Lynn Shelton Grant Program to Support Filmmakers 39 and Over

Gina Prince-Bythewood to Direct Viola Davis-Led African Warrior Pic “The Woman King”

Quote of the Day: Viola Davis’ “Entire Life Has Been a Protest”

Olivia Summers, Dee Bryant, and Angela Meryl Form First All-Women Stunt-Driving Team

Epic Documentary “Women Make Film” Headed to TCM, Will Air as 14-Part Series

Isabel Sandoval’s History-Making Drama “Lingua Franca” Acquired by ARRAY Releasing

Note: All descriptions are from press materials, unless otherwise noted.

Follow Women and Hollywood on Twitter @WomenaHollywood and Melissa Silverstein @melsil

To contact Women and Hollywood, email melissa@womenandhollywood.com.

July 18, 2020
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