Welcome back to Reel Women, the monthly column that highlights new releases that are written and/or directed by women. This month we’ve got dramas, comedies, documentaries, and even a couple of musicals! Cinemas are open, so we have a mixture of films getting the big screen treatment and those that are available to watch in the comfort of your own home.
Afterlife of the Party – available on Netflix
Directed by: Stephen Herek
Written by: Carrie Freedle
A social butterfly (Victoria Justice) who dies during her birthday week is given a second chance to right her wrongs on Earth.
Afterlife of the Party is Carrie Freedle’s third produced screenplay.
Cinderella – available on Amazon Prime
Written and directed by: Kay Cannon
Yet another retelling of the classic story.
Kay Cannon is a producer, writer and director. Cinderella is her second directing credit after previously directing the comedy Blockers. She’s been nominated for a Primetime Emmy three times for her work on 30 Rock.
Worth – available in Netflix
Directed by: Sara Colangelo
Written by: Max Borenstein
An attorney in Washington D.C. battles against cynicism, bureaucracy and politics to help the victims of 9/11.
Sara Colangelo is a writer, director and producer, and Worth is her third feature film. Her last film, The Kindergarten Teacher, won the Directing Award and was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance Film Festival.
Wildfire – available in cinemas
Written and directed by: Cathy Brady
The story of two sisters who grew up on the fractious Irish border. When one of them, who has been missing, finally returns home, the intense bond with her sister is re-ignited.
Cathy Brady is a writer, director and producer. Wildfire is her first feature film after previously writing and directing four short films.
Fucking with Nobody – available on MUBI
Directed by: Hannaleena Hauru
Written by: Hannaleena Hauru and Lasse Poser
After losing a film job to her nemesis Kristian, Hanna teams up with her sister and counterculture friends, to create a parody romance on Instagram between herself and young actor Ekku.
Hannaleena Hauru is an actress, writer, director and producer. Fucking with Nobody is her third feature film.
Herself – available in cinemas
Directed by: Phyllida Lloyd
Written by: Malcolm Campbell
A young mother escapes her abusive husband and fights back against a broken housing system. She sets out to build her own home and, in the process, rebuilds her life and re-discovers herself.
Phyllida Lloyd is a director and producer whose previous directing credits include Mamma Mia! and The Iron Lady.
Respect – available in cinemas
Directed by: Liesl Tommy
Written by: Tracey Scott Wilson
Following the rise of Aretha Franklin’s career from a child singing in her father’s church’s choir to her international superstardom.
Respect is Liesl Tommy’s first feature film after previously directing episodes of different TV shows including Queen Sugar, The Walking Dead and Jessica Jones. Tracey Scott Wilson is a writer and producer who has two Primetime Emmy Awards, one for the limited series Fosse/Verdon and one for The Americans.
Copilot – available in cinemas
Directed by: Anne Zohra Berrached
Written by: Stefanie Misrahi and Anne Zohra Berrached
Two students marry in secretly despite objections from the woman’s mother. In a mosque in Hamburg, they promise to stay together, but when the man she finds her whole world shaken.
Anne Zohra Berrached is a writer, director and producer; Copilot is her third feature film and is Stefanie Misrahi’s first produced screenplay.
Malignant – available in cinemas
Directed by James Wan
Written by: Akela Cooper
Madison is paralyzed by shocking visions of grisly murders, and her torment worsens as she discovers that these waking dreams are in fact terrifying realities.
Akela Cooper is a writer and producer. Malignant is her second feature film and she’s previously written episodes of TV shows such as The 100, Luke Cage and Grimm.
The Wonderful: Stories from the Space Station – available on VOD
Directed by: Clare Lewins
Documentary about astronauts who recount their experiences aboard the International Space Station.
Clare Lewins is a documentary director and producer; The Wonderful: Stories from the Space Station is her second documentary film.
Nightbooks – available on Netflix
Directed by: David Yarovesky
Written by: Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Iaconis
Follows Alex (Winslow Fegley), a boy obsessed with scary stories who is imprisoned by an evil young witch in her contemporary New York City apartment.
Nightbooks is Mikki Daughtry’s third produced screenplay. She also wrote Five Feet Apart and The Curse of La Llorona.
Schumacher – available on Netflix
Written and directed by: Hanns-Bruno Kammertöns, Vanessa Nöcker and Michael Wech
Documentary on the life of seven-time Formula 1 world champion driver Michael Schumacher.
Vanessa Nöcker is a documentary director and producer; Schumacher is her first documentary film.
Ankahi Kahaniya – available on Netflix
Directed by: Abhishek Chaubey, Saket Chaudhary and Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari
Written by: Piyush Gupta, Hussain Haidry and Shreyas Jain
As big city life buzzes around them, lonely souls discover surprising sources of connection and companionship in three tales of love, loss and longing.
Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari is a director, screenwriter, producer and author; Ankahi Kahaniya is her fifth feature film.
Rose Plays Julie – available in cinemas and on VOD
Written and directed by: Christine Molloy and Joe Lawlor
In this intimate exploration of identity, trauma and power, a young woman seeks out her birth mother, inadvertently triggering a string of events which change both their lives.
Christine Molloy is a writer, director and editor. Rose Plays Julie is her third feature film and she’s also directed ten short films.
Sweetheart – available in cinemas and VOD
Written and directed by: Marley Morrison
A socially awkward, environmentally conscious teenager named AJ (Nell Barlow) is dragged to a coastal holiday park by her painfully ‘normal’ family, where she becomes unexpectedly captivated by a chlorine smelling, sun-loving lifeguard named Isla.
Marley Morrison is a writer, director and producer. Sweetheart is her first feature film after previous writing and directing four short films.
My Little Pony: A New Generation – available on Netflix
Directed by: Robert Cullen, José Luis Ucha and Mark Fattibene
Written by: Gillian Berrow and Tim Sullivan
After the time of the Mane 6, Sunny, a young Earth Pony, and her new Unicorn friend Izzy explore their world and strive to restore Harmony to Equestria.
Gillian Berrow is a writer and actress. She’s written over a dozen episodes of various My Little Pony TV shows.
The Man Who Sold His Skin – available in cinemas
Written and directed by: Kaouther Ben Hania
His own body turned into a living work of art and promptly exhibited in a museum, Sam (Yahya Mahayni), a Syrian refugee, will soon realize to have sold away more than just his skin.
The Man Who Sold His Skin was nominated for Best International Feature Film at this year’s Oscars and is Kaouther Ben Hania’s second feature-length narrative film after previously directing four short films and three documentary films.
Gagarin – available in cinemas
Directed by: Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh
Written by: Benjamin Charbit, Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh
Yuri fights to save his home town – which he shares with his namesake, Yuri Gagarin – from demolition.
Fanny Liatard is a writer and director. Gagarine is her first feature film after previously writing and directing three short films.
The Tape – available in cinemas and on VOD
Written and directed by: Martha Tilston
Tally Green (Martha Tilston) is a cleaner with a hidden musical talent. When she meets jaded corporate lawyer Leo (Lee Hart) he encourages her to pursue music but the two don’t agree and Tally leaves him with only the tape of the music she’s written.
The Tape is Martha Tilston’s directorial debut.
Percy Vs Goliath – available on VOD
Directed by: Clark Johnson
Written by: Garfield Lindsay Miller and Hilary Pryor
A Canadian farmer (Christopher Walken) takes on a giant corporation after their GMOs interfere with his crops.
Hilary Pryor is a writer, director and producer. Percy Vs. Goliath is her fourth feature-length screenplay.
Sounds Like Love – available on Netflix
Directed by: Juana Macías
Written by: Laura Sarmiento Pallarés
Fashion assistant Maca (María Valverde) has just about got her life together after a devastating breakup, when Leo (Alex González), the man who broke her heart returns. Seeking support from best friends, Adriana (Susana Abaitúa) and Jimena (Elísabet Casanovas), all three will learn love can be complicated.
Juana Macías is a director, writer, producer and editor. Sounds Like Love is her fifth feature film and is Laura Sarmiento Pallarés first feature-length screenplay.
That’s 21 films made by women being released in the UK this month. As always, we’d love to hear what films you’ve watched recently that are made by women and do take care if you decide to venture out to the cinema.