Together Together is about a couple who spend a few intense months together, but they aren’t together together. It’s a story of the slow growth of respect and friendship between two people who are connected out of necessity, not love. This film is available on Hulu.Continue Reading: Together Together, but not like that
Instant Family is a look at a real foster care story – one with a happy ending. It’s a comedy, but it looks clear-eyed at a situation that is anything but funny.Continue Reading: Review: Instant Family
Transparent: Musicale Finale takes a grieving Pfefferman family on a journey toward healing with music, Jewish traditions, and some truly bizarre turns of fantasy.Continue Reading: Review: Transparent: Musicale Finale
My standard disclaimer about top 10 end of year lists: there are many things I don’t see on TV because I don’t have the right channels or subscriptions. If I overlook your favorite, that may be why. Here are the best TV shows I saw in 2017 (even if they weren’t released in 2017). Continue Reading: 10 Great TV Series Directed Wholly or Partly by Women from 2017
Season 2 of One Mississippi is on Amazon Video. Tig Notaro – with Diablo Cody – created this comedy/drama based loosely on Tig’s own life. Continue Reading: Review: Season 2 of One Mississippi
Season 2 of One Mississippi begins on Amazon on September 8. This dark comedy series from Tig Notaro is the partly true story of Tig’s journey home after her mother’s death. Continue Reading: Watch This: Trailer for Season 2 of One Mississippi
The only thing wrong with season 1 of One Mississippi is there isn’t enough of it. It’s a mere 6 brief episodes with Tig Notaro in her semi-autobiographical struggle to survive cancer, C-Diff, childhood trauma, and the death of her mother all in one overwhelming onslaught. Continue Reading: Review: One Mississippi
Transparent gave Amazon Prime members an early preview with the release of season 2, episode 1 yesterday. The remainer of the season will be available on December 11.
I don’t plan to review or recap each episode individually, but I couldn’t resist commenting on the early release episode 1. I’ll write about the season as a whole after it releases.
Transparent season 2 begins with Sarah (Amy Landecker) and Tammy’s (Melora Hardin) wedding. It’s just as crazy and noisy as the preview you’ve probably seen led you to believe.Continue Reading: Transparent Season 2 Episode 1: Let the Pfeffermans Begin
Tig is a documentary about a year in the life of comedian Tig Notaro. The film is currently streaming on Netflix.
I recommend the film to everyone. Not because it’s a great documentary, but because Tig Notaro is a woman to admire and respect.
The documentary looks at a year in Tig’s life in which she was diagnosed with C-diff and breast cancer, the year in which her mother died, and the year in which she learned that her dreams of being a mother might never come to fruition. Any one of those things would be devastating, and they all happened at once.
Tig is a stand-up comedian. When something happens in her life, she deals with it by adding it to her stand-up routine. The documentary begins 2 days after she received her cancer diagnosis, on the night she walked on a stage and said, “Hello. How are you? I have cancer.”
In the following year, the news of her groundbreaking performance went viral, the sound recording of that night became a best selling album called “Tig Notaro Live” (pronounced with a short i). She became famous and the darling of talk shows and interview segments.
In that year she made a decision that could have caused her cancer to recur in order to try to become a mother. In that year she also fell in love with Stephanie Allynne, an actress she met while working on In a World.
One of many interviews about Tig in the documentary is Stephanie Allynne talking about how she believed she was straight. That kept her from recognizing her feelings for Tig for a while. She seems to have it figured out now; the couple recently announced their engagement.
One year after Tig’s “I have cancer” performance, she was back on the same stage. She’d made it through a rough year and came out of it with renewed confidence and finely honed jokes about it.
There were some poignant, painfully real moments in the film. There were also moments that felt as if they were staged after the fact – reenactments, if you will. The real parts were compelling, the recreated events felt out of place. As storytelling devices, they were there for a purpose, but they still felt out of place.
The overall effect of the film is one of wonderment: at the strength of character that Tig Notaro has, at the humor she brings into her life to deal with hard times, and at her physical recovery from such difficult illnesses.
Tig Notaro is a strong, beautiful, hilarious woman. Watch the documentary.
In a World is terrific.
In a World is the from the mind of Lake Bell. She wrote it, directed it, and stars in it. Her character – Carol – wants to do voice overs. Carol is a quirky and very likable woman. Carol’s father Sam, played by real voice over artist Fred Melamed, discounts her dreams because she’s a woman and women don’t become voice over stars. In addition, her father is currently the biggest name in voice over acting, and he doesn’t like the idea of an upstart daughter being his competition.
The title comes from the voice of Don LaFontaine, the legendary voice over star who made the phrase “in a world” the famous opening of many a movie trailer. The death of this real Hollywood personality left a hole in the voice over world that several in Lake Bell’s fictional world attempt to fill.
Carol, her sister Dani (Michaela Watkins) her father and her father’s younger girlfriend Jamie (Alexandra Holden) make up a family with its unique set of issues and jealousies and support systems. The sisters are beautifully close. I enjoyed the twists in how the family dynamics played out, and especially Jamie’s surprise influence on how Sam behaved as a father.
Dani has her own storyline separate from Carol around her relationship with her husband Moe, played by Rob Corddry. Another storyline is Carol’s hunt for work and her voice recording work in a studio run by a guy named Louis, played by relative newcomer Demetri Martin. (Louis is a romantic interest, too.) Other characters in the recording studio are played by Stephanie Allynne, who has a real knack for physical comedy, and Tig Notaro, who gets a couple of good laughs. Ken Marino is Gustav, another of the voice over artists in the race to become the new voice to utter “in a world” in future movie trailers. Gustav uses his oily charm to seduce Carol before he realizes that she is his mentor Sam’s daughter and another aspiring voice over talent.
Eva Longoria is hilarious as Eva Longoria. Geena Davis is perfect as a crusader for women’s power in Hollywood. Cameron Diaz did an uncredited bit as an Amazon warrior.
The movie is funny with lots of opportunities to laugh, a few opportunities to wince at a character’s pain, and an ending that deserves applause. I don’t want to give you a lot of details because the ending is unusual. As I was leaving I heard several different people make positive comments, so I wasn’t the only moviegoer who was happy with the movie.
You can watch the trailer in the earlier post Where in the World is In a World?
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