Maven's Nest

Maven's Nest is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Nora Lee Mandel
Rating Title/Year Author
8/10 Thirst for Justice (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Follows women in U.S., on native lands, Flint,MI...with direct experience of health impacts of government lies about safety of their family's drinking water, onto protests. EDIT
Posted Feb 7, 2020
6/10 We Are the Radical Monarchs (2019) Nora Lee Mandel To cut through their repetitive, heavily jargoned, local rhetorical flourishes...follows a new Oakland girls troop with a curriculum to combine diversity with social action. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
7/10 () Nora Lee Mandel Come across as almost impossibly noble...but this is suitable for educational use...as he updates historical perspective... and expands his fight against racism in justice. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
7/10 Slay the Dragon (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Angry enough to figure out gerrymandering...then learning on-the-job how to organize a state ballot race is a roller coaster of excitement and confusing legal challenges. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
8/10 Harriet (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Takes populist educational approach to Tubman's own agency to comfortably be shown in schools and general public Black History Month commemorations. Erivo is charismatic. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
7/10 Changing the Game (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Intimately profiles tumultuous year in lives of 3 teen athletes...Parents of competitors are vicious vs. these emotionally fragile kids. Lofty rhetoric won't convince them. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
7/10 American Muslim (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Interviewing five charismatic Muslims in Brooklyn and Queens, NY and following them cinema verité style...to raise awareness...and help make interfaith outreach possible. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
9/10 Always in Season (2014) Nora Lee Mandel Extraordinary integration of contextualizing the contemporary violence against African-American men within a long American tradition. Vividly brings past and present to life. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
7/10 The All-Americans (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Not a sports documentary...seeing what it takes for these Latino boys to get on the East L.A. football field is much more involving than the limited playing time on screen. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
6/10 () Nora Lee Mandel For student from stable, middle class Harlem family...this is extreme application of unjustified perception of black males by law enforcement...leading to mass incarceration. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2020
7/10 Citizen K (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Gibney does a very good job of driving a complex story that lays bare just how much Putin sneers at democracy. ..traced through the singular career of Mikhail Khodorkovsky. EDIT
Posted Jan 12, 2020
7/10 Earth (Erde) (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Geyrhalter brings fresh eye to 7 big digs and conversational knack to diverse workers. Big machines are cool to watch until you are forced to think about the damage they do. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2020
8/10 Invisible Life (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Colorfully emotive portrait of 2 sisters resentfully trapped by the conservative and limited expectations for women in 1950's Rio. Gorgeously heartrending cinematic tribute. EDIT
Posted Jan 8, 2020
8/10 Leaving Home, Coming Home: A Portrait of Robert Frank (2005) Nora Lee Mandel In 2004, Fox interviewed Frank while they visited the past and present, through locales and then 80-year-old's extensive personal archives...Brings his art to new eyes. EDIT
Posted Jan 1, 2020
8/10 Private Life (2018) Nora Lee Mandel A wry, very humanistic drama that's full of the laughter of life, embodied by a wonderful ensemble who intersect across different stages of New York life in unexpected ways. EDIT
Posted Jan 1, 2020
7/10 Ask Dr. Ruth (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Will answer most of your questions about former Karola Ruth Siegel...through a spirited tour of much of what she has experienced and done during her long and remarkable life. EDIT
Posted Dec 31, 2019
7/10 Woman Walks Ahead (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Impressively skirts usual awkwardness of white privilege amidst suffering minorities...Sitting Bull (charismatic Michael Greyeyes)...in beautiful scenes of gorgeous West. EDIT
Posted Dec 31, 2019
8/10 Song of Granite (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Using an impressionistic, avant-garde style...its beauty and heartbreaking sense of lost connection to the past expresses much more than the usual corny sentimentalism. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
8/10 One of Us (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Goes farther into observing Hasidic ultra-Orthodox Jewish community in US than any nonfiction film...Emotional pain of those trying to leave its control tugs at the heart. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
9/10 Frozen II (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Not a make-cash sequel but a glorious "Part 2" of full story of the two sisters beloved since '13 by devoted fans of all ages, places, and genders. None will be disappointed. EDIT
Posted Nov 26, 2019
5/10 Synonyms (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Some will be relieved to find a reason for Yoav's behavior. Others will either be unconvinced, or content to watch Mercier move on screen, at least until his next roles. EDIT
Posted Nov 13, 2019
6/10 Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Documentary demonstrates that Cohen, like so many male artists ... fit a pattern of an archetypal Jewish men's fantasy fulfillment. His muse was a blonde gentile goddess. EDIT
Posted Sep 8, 2019
7/10 Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles (2019) Nora Lee Mandel A convincing theme of this informative and emotional documentary is that the 1964 musical "Fiddler on the Roof" is a "female empowerment piece".... with feminist portrayals. EDIT
Posted Sep 8, 2019
7/10 Into the Ashes (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Even when dialogue sometimes slips into noir predictability, the charismatic cast, dark ambiance, and strong motivations propel involvement in the conflicted characters. EDIT
Posted Jul 20, 2019
5/10 The Lion King (2019) Nora Lee Mandel New VR version of 1994 classic for the video gaming generation, but won't that audience want a faster pace and more action than this slow, over-long preening of technology? EDIT
Posted Jul 17, 2019
7/10 Advocate (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Admiring bio-doc of only lawyer defending Palestinians in Israel. With interviews and cinéma vérité, goes inside halls and offices to closely follow wrenching legal cases. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2019
8/10 Barbara Rubin and the Exploding NY Underground (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Reanimates the young Jewish woman who challenged men's alt-culture...with her vulva images, charisma, and artistic matchmaking...Imperfectly integrates her disparate lives. EDIT
Posted Jun 21, 2019
6/10 The Outsider (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Ultra-violent, ahistorical Western revenge flick...is intriguing mash-up of genres...Really captivating Jon Foo's...devastating use of formidable martial arts skills. EDIT
Posted Jun 16, 2019
6/10 Aladdin (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Frenetically whizzes around bland actors with flat American accents busy singing & dancing old & new songs through effects to keep child's attention during over-long scenes. EDIT
Posted May 22, 2019
7/10 Chasing Portraits (2018) Nora Lee Mandel More about her feelings...audience viscerally shares her whirligig of emotions during her search; she's especially sensitive in not pushing her father on difficult memories. EDIT
Posted Apr 17, 2019
7/10 Super Deluxe (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Like in entertaining Apatow movies, within madcap and even life-threatening situations, each character learns to work on primary relationships, thanks to forgiving females. EDIT
Posted Apr 5, 2019
6/10 Dumbo (2019) Nora Lee Mandel Lumbers too much, with too little charm. Just barely saved by a few elements: DeVito, Eva Green, production design, and the digital elephants, especially one that flies. EDIT
Posted Apr 4, 2019
8/10 Penguin Highway (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Charming anime children's story that also celebrates science education...Follows the child scientist doing careful scientific observation... though writing is un-translated. EDIT
Posted Apr 4, 2019
8/10 The Unorthodox (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Malka's debut film, with a delightful score, that could make secular me not just empathize with but also be entertained by the Ultra-Orthodox is unusual and successful. EDIT
Posted Mar 20, 2019
4/10 The Aftermath (2019) Nora Lee Mandel The only reason to consider seeing their surprisingly unappealing romantic triangle is the particular period context that hasn't been seen in fiction films. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
8/10 The Golem (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Cheers to The Paz Brothers, and writer Ariel Cohen, for a feminist take on the traditional tale! EDIT
Posted Feb 10, 2019
7/10 The Pluto Moment (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Quest...for authentic funeral experience...with nocturnal song...Urbanites ruefully discover that Chinese pop culture is reaching ever farther into the hinterland. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2019
8/10 The Crosses (Las cruces) (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Movingly tracks where past, memory, conscience and grief come together in very specific locales of one community that looks like it hasn't changed - except for the crosses. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2019
8/10 Rojo (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Slyly demonstrates that the right-wing coup vs Peron '76...didn't occur suddenly without a context of support...Alarming harbinger or entertaining parable of Dirty War. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2019
8/10 Svideteli Putina (2018) Nora Lee Mandel His camera were present at the creation of the Putin dictatorship...He now narrates his unique footage as a "witness" with the nuanced eye of the perspective of time. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2019
7/10 The Trial (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Astounding find: a complete film of one of Stalin's early infamous "show trials"...After, Loznitsa scrolls his research on what really happened to all the participants. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2019
7/10 Donbass (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Shrewdly targets several dimensions...utilized to punish Ukraine...Extraordinarily canny in showing how...history is frequently re-written and "news" is scripted. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2019
7/10 The Last Resort (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Two young photographers saw more than I did in Miami Beach to make gorgeous visuals over ten years...They had foresight to document a Jewish community that didn't last long. EDIT
Posted Dec 6, 2018
10/10 Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché (2018) Nora Lee Mandel In her passionate debut film, Green achieves a feat of making a two-level research project informative and entertaining. Exciting and essential documentary for film history! EDIT
Posted Nov 29, 2018
7/10 Bathtubs Over Broadway (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Finally goes from treating the songs as joke...to a wonderful, well-researched visual and musical introduction to creators and performers of 1950's-1980's industrial shows. EDIT
Posted Nov 28, 2018
8/10 Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Very little kids shouldn't be brought to see this entertaining, funny, and scary, animated PG ...feisty send-up of popular culture and Disney in theaters. EDIT
Posted Nov 14, 2018
7/10 Hitler's Hollywood (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Expands..seeing more of Goebbels' propaganda films...to burlesque comedies and musicals...That Third Reich was cinematic self-delusion is intriguing but repeats the obvious. EDIT
Posted Apr 8, 2018
8/10 Cielo (2017) Nora Lee Mandel A poet, McAlpine narrates a leisurely tour of the night sky... then listens to the diverse assortment of people who watch and relate to the sky in different quirky ways. EDIT
Posted Dec 8, 2017
9/10 () Nora Lee Mandel Lebeau creates a comprehensible context for Bob Dylan's notorious trilogy of faith-based albums...within continuity of protean master of American traditional musical forms. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2017
7/10 Spielberg (2017) Nora Lee Mandel With an extraordinary selection of clips, Lacy illustrates the most obvious father and son theme from his oeuvre...80+ stars give directorial anecdotes from each film. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2017