Category: Film Reviews

Abigail Jean’s QUEEN OF THE DESERT Film Review Short

Director Mary Ann Rotond, who won Best Woman Directed Short at the Poppy Jasper International Film Festival this year, believes that the power of shared humanity, which is the essence of empathy, can overpower the centrifugal forces she believes are at the core of racism and bigotry tearing away at America.
She tells her visually stunning movie short through an encounter of a young woman Black and proud who is hitch hiking and the long-haul trucker, White, who gives her a lift. Once inside the cab of the trucker’s rig, the woman discovers that the truck driver is enamored with the culture and mores represented by the Confederate flag that is a banner inside his rig. And the sparks fly. – Film short review by Abigail Jean.

Luis De Leon’s THE QUEEN OF THE DESERT Film Short Review

QUEEN OF THE DESERT is Director Mary Ann Rotondi’s creative endeavor to make a movie commentary about what she believed are the dynamic social and political forces menacing this country, writes the WORD’s Luis De Leon. Rotondi, who won Best Woman Directed Short at the 2022 Poppy Jasper International Film Festival, uses two characters of different gender, ethnicity, personal values as well as social and political mores to express her point of view that the power of people’s shared humanity can ameliorate the centrifugal forces she believes are tearing away at America.
In other words, people living in the United States of America need to empathize more with people who don’t appear to be like them.

A Riveting Micro Budgeted Movie With the Heart, Soul and Panache of a Hollywood Blockbuster: JUMP, DARLING

A kinetic, melodramatic romp of orgasmic cinematic delights with a sizzling film score, steamy dance scenes, unflinching cinematographic verisimilitude, savvy directing and acting in a family drama movie genre rarely rendered on screen: A family drama with class fused with drag culture.
A few of its many accolades: FilmOut San Diego, US, Best Supporting Actress Cloris Leachman and Best First Narrative Feature, Phil Connell; L.A. Outfest, US, Grand Jury Prize, International Feature Special Mention, Cloris Leachman; Lovers Film Festival, Italy, Young Lovers Jury, Matthew Shepherd Award, Phil Connell. More accolades inside. – Review by Gregg W. Morris.

NYC DOC Film Review: EXPOSURE (2021)
The intimate panoramic scope and breath of this sublime account of women expeditioners skiing to the North Pole makes for one of the most rhapsodic films in recent years.

“We’ve created a film that offers an alternative to, and reimagines, the traditionally male-oriented expedition genre – all while delivering ace character-driven storytelling. I believe that when women come to fully believe in ourselves, especially in the crucible of the natural world, it’s catalytic. We can take the reins, work across boundaries of all kinds, and lead a way into a future where we adapt, with compassion and equity, to the changing climate” – Director Holly Morris. Review by Gregg W. Morris.

SHADOW BIRD (SONSI) Film Short Review

Those on the lookout for films with the cinematic magic to raise their spirits during these COVID-19 surges should consider this mesmerizing hallucinogenic & hypnagogic tale by Director Sivita Singh. It can make you feel as if you are experiencing a loopy de loop of phantasmagoric proportions during these perilous days. By Greggory W. Morris

FRIMAS – Short Movie Review

Kara, who lives in a dystopian country where abortion is illegal and the penalties are draconian for those who break the law, is desperate to get one, nevertheless, and that desperation has driven her to take risks that could get her imprisoned if not dead on a slab in an abortion clinic. She is willing to take any risk, face any peril – and she most certainly does in Director Marianne Farley’s foreboding but exquisitely made five-star edge-of-the-seat thriller. Is Dirctor Farley’s FRIMAS a prophetic foretelling of what is on America’s horizon because of TX SB8?


A sublime piece of filmmaking about the horrors of traumatic childhood experiences by a filmmaker who, Caveat Emptor, makes sure you feel the pain. Writes Dr. Murray A. Strauss, Founder of the Family Research Laboratory at the University of New Hampshire, “The family is the most violent institution, group, or setting that a typical citizen is likely to encounter. There are exceptions such as the police or the army in time of War.”­ – By Gregg W. Morris

Straight No Chaser Film Short Review

A 14-minute film short made with extra tender loving care, as if every scene was meticulously planned, down to the last nuance, down to the last surprise. The filmmakers, drawing on a well of creativity, infused imaginative scenarios of the everyday angst of lovee-dovee neurotic couples with a verisimilitude that syncs well with an other worldly cosmic finish. It’s that good. – By Gregg W. Morris