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
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
8/10 The Opera House (2018) Nora Lee Mandel Rare stills, marvelous footage, glorious archival performance music, and five-decade experiences of charming fans who are the institutional memory, and full of anecdotes EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2017
6/10 Sea Sorrow (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Vanessa Redgrave expanded a benefit performance program by her extended activist family into a very personal and very moving PSA...on behalf of ...refugee children. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2017
6/10 Hall of Mirrors (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Bio-doc plus an informative case study of how old-fashioned shoe leather, observations and curiosity can find overlooked factual evidence even on widely reported global news. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2017
6/10 Caniba (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Approach is abstract aesthetic of exploring transgressive desire...into fascinating look at fundamental, eternally problematical human relationship- sibling love and rivalry. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2017
10/10 1945 (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Dramatically suspenseful, beautiful-looking, scarily evocative step back [as] guilt, recrimination, resentment and fear erupt in fields, houses, tavern, pharmacy and church. EDIT
Posted Oct 27, 2017
7/10 Marjorie Prime (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Smith's changes of affect are marvelous. More intellectual than emotional, this is perfect for open-ended post-screening discussions. How would your family deal with your AI? EDIT
Posted Aug 18, 2017
6/10 Black Code (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Emphasis on...where populations and government control are growing are vividly illustrated with on-the-ground examples... Some of Deibert's insights are no longer shocking. EDIT
Posted Jul 30, 2017
6/10 Nobody Speak: Hulk Hogan, Gawker and Trials of a Free Press (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Interviews Gawker editors extensively on personal toll of the suit and liabilities; reporters give inside look at the trial... conclusion gets over dramatic and heavy-handed. EDIT
Posted Jul 30, 2017
9/10 Lindy Lou, Juror Number 2 (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Unique, thought-provoking quest through Deep South to talk to her 11 fellow jurors...An unusually brave and frank look at that civic duty that bears a heavy responsibility. EDIT
Posted Jul 30, 2017
9/10 () Nora Lee Mandel Extraordinarily detailed examination of police shooting of unarmed mentally ill African-American man and intimate portrait of devastating yet energizing impact on his family. EDIT
Posted Jul 30, 2017
8/10 The Workers Cup (2017) Nora Lee Mandel Intimately captures how fantasies of opportunities don't get to square with the realities of building the huge facilities needed...Empathetic, insightful look behind. EDIT
Posted Jul 30, 2017
8/10 Hyvä postimies (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Microcosm of Eastern European impacts and debates...Where Ivan sees refugees...pointing to positive development, others complain...and hopeful vibes depressingly dissipate. EDIT
Posted Jul 30, 2017
9/10 Nowhere to Hide (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Inside view of the war in Iraq is revealing eye-opener for Americans who turned away when the U.S. pulled out in late 2011...five vividly chronicled years...a powerful diary. EDIT
Posted Jul 30, 2017
9/10 The Fencer (2015) Nora Lee Mandel Athlete fleeing Stalin, war-weary waifs learning elite sport vs Soviets, based on true story, plus has a sweet romance, filmed in beautiful seasons: irresistibly gratifying. EDIT
Posted Jul 21, 2017
9/10 Brillo Box (3 Cents Off) (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Delightfully combines family memoir with photos and art history thru quick montages...She gets to essence of irony of pop art as aesthetic object mocking commercial culture. EDIT
Posted Jul 15, 2017
10/10 The Cinema Travellers (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Rises above ethnographic interest to showcase universality and brotherhood of dedicated film fans...to document in verité style, with great sympathy...a business changing. EDIT
Posted Jul 15, 2017
8/10 Karl Marx City (2016) Nora Lee Mandel In searching for a reason [for her father's suicide], she gains mature insights about her family, her neighbors, and the true nature of the society around them [in ex-GDR]. EDIT
Posted Jul 15, 2017
9/10 The Illinois Parables (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Thematically linked experimental documentary "suite" uses strong resonant images, with some re-enactments, to show how the land and prairie landscape don't forget the past. EDIT
Posted Jul 15, 2017
8/10 13TH (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Brings facts and fury to wide audience...Interviews set in visually striking spaces...Very effectively repeats and juxtaposes 100 years of archival images and code words. EDIT
Posted Jul 15, 2017
8/10 The Exception (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Fine acting ensemble successfully, absorbingly intertwines fictional characters with historical figures [in] a sexy separate peace...Enticing, believable thriller for adults EDIT
Posted Jun 3, 2017
6/10 The Women's Balcony (2016) Nora Lee Mandel A comic celebration of tradition...Insightful portrait of the more extremist rabbi...The message of this cute and ultimately complacent movie: Enjoy the back of the bus! EDIT
Posted May 24, 2017
6/10 Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Staid bio-flick [gets] injection of vitality with Barbara Sukowa...Sadness of exile from language, culture, and country permeates every gorgeous frame. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2017
6/10 Ben-Gurion, Epilogue (2016) Nora Lee Mandel Serviceable visual history lesson of 20th century Israel through the eyes of the man who was at the center of its founding...Film portrays him as a very pragmatic politician. EDIT
Posted May 11, 2017
7/10 Cloudy Sunday (2015) Nora Lee Mandel 1st film showing decimation of Thessaloniki's Sephardic Jews...and resistance/Nazi collaboration...Despite initially uneven acting, quite moving...and lovely Tsitsanis music. EDIT
Posted Apr 19, 2017
7/10 Beauty and the Beast (2017) Nora Lee Mandel A busily sumptuous feast for the eyes and ears ...with three new songs...deserved PG rating...exhausting watching the film. EDIT
Posted Mar 20, 2017
7/10 Como Me Apaixonei por Eva Ras (2016) Nora Lee Mandel While Sena muses there is still an audience for these old movies, she is...living in the present and the light and noise from the big projector [isn't] drenched in sentiment. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2017
7/10 Helmut Berger, Actor (2015) Nora Lee Mandel Horvath keeps tape rolling for audio and contextual revelations...[and] cleverly gets beyond that calculated reality TV image by restlessly poking around . EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2017
9/10 A Model Family in a Model Home (2015) Nora Lee Mandel With art...historical references, drawings, photos and films from archives...wonderfully makes the cinematic connection between this past and today's housing finance crisis. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2017