Nora Lee Mandel

Nora Lee Mandel
Tomatometer-approved critic

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
7/10 64% Vice (2018) Realized by a superb ensemble, cleverly tells true stories of Dick Cheney and Lynne Vincent...manipulating levers of power in DC...Satire meaningful mostly to political geeks.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2018
9/10 71% On the Basis of Sex (2019) Feel-good movie of the year on triumph over gender discrimination...Well captures the feeling of the period from 1955 to 1971 in Ginsburgs' lives upbeat hagiography.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2018
4/10 No Score Yet Mein Führer - Die wirklich wahrste Wahrheit über Adolf Hitler (My Fuhrer) (2007) Of anthropological interest, My Führer is like a curio exhibit in a Museum of German Comedy rather than a very amusing or profound entertainment for international audiences.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 25, 2018
9/10 98% Won't You Be My Neighbor? (2018) "Best of 2018" "Mr Rogers' Neighborhood" over three decades is revealed as dedicated ministry of Fred Rogers. He modeled kindness and empathy directly to each young viewer. ‐
Read More | Posted Dec 22, 2018
9/10 100% Minding the Gap (2018) "Best of 2018" From a new generation of boys skating together through the desolation of the recession..we all can come closer to understanding, sadly, how abuse happens.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 22, 2018
9/10 97% The Rider (2018) "Best of 2018" Zhao blows away the traditional western movie stereotypes of cowboy, Indian, rodeo, horse whisperer-and a century of those American symbols of masculinity.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 22, 2018
7/10 No Score Yet The Last Resort (2018) 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.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 6, 2018
10/10 No Score Yet Be Natural (2018) 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!‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
7/10 100% Bathtubs Over Broadway (2018) Finally goes from treating the songs as a wonderful, well-researched visual and musical introduction to creators and performers of 1950's-1980's industrial shows. ‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Nov 28, 2018
8/10 88% Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) 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.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
9/10 100% The Waldheim Waltz (2018) Of riveting contemporary political relevance...effectively raises disquieting questions about a country's memories and moral responsibility as right-wing parties again rise.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 26, 2018
9/10 59% Memoir of War (La douleur) (2018) Liberation of Paris from Nazis gets a new, personalized perspective, where it serves as the background for one woman living through this fraught period, Marguerite Duras.‐
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2018
9/10 95% BlacKkKlansman (2018) Powerfully, sometimes humorously...encompasses racial , cinematic history...Chilling link between past and present realities. Far more truth in tumultuous film than fiction.‐
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2018
6/10 100% 40 Years in the Making: The Magic Music Movie (2018) Genial documentary is like your 50th reunion. No big drama, confrontation, revelation or insight. Men maturely make mutual decision to focus on good memories, pleasant music.‐
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2018
6/10 83% Puzzle (2018) Just focus on how Kelly Macdonald beautifully lets her mid-20th century-type of woman slowly bloom and the inventiveness of Irrfan Khan's irresistible inventor.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2018
8/10 86% The Captain (Der Hauptmann) (2018) Schwentke intends for these actions to parallel what Wehrmacht participated in against Jews and Roma ...This astute film is an excoriating portrait of Nazism or fascism. ‐
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2018
6/10 79% Breath (2018) Inappropriate relationships...leave a discomfort to almost overwhelm the convincing portrayal of male adolescent bonhomie, the gorgeous scenery, and fantastic surfing scenes.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 22, 2018
8/10 90% Bye Bye Germany (Es war einmal in Deutschland...) (2018) The year: 1946. The place: U.S. Displaced Persons Camp, Frankfurt, Germany. The genre: Comedy. Really, and it's enjoyable and rich with ironic humor and dark undertones.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 22, 2018
7/10 78% What Will People Say? (Hva vil folk si) (2018) For portrayal of so-called "honor crime," unique film emotionally touches issues in some 1st generation immigrant communities in West from point of view of 2nd generation.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2018
9/10 95% RBG (2018) Viewers are moved by the accomplishments and impact tiny Ruth Bader Ginsburg has had on so many lives and how the appreciation of her work is growing across generations.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 9, 2018
5/10 78% The King (2018) Pushes metaphoric parallels between life of Elvis and American exceptionalism as far as his 1962 Rolls-Royce can go. Car and doc break down...Insight gets drowned out . ‐
Read More | Posted Jun 28, 2018
9/10 97% Marlina the Murderer in Four Acts (2018) Feminist Western you should've been waiting for! Focusing on violent behavior and its impact on women...straddles tradition and modernity, distinctive look, strong females.‐
Read More | Posted Jun 23, 2018
7/10 94% Hitler's Hollywood (2018) Expands..seeing more of Goebbels' propaganda burlesque comedies and musicals...That Third Reich was cinematic self-delusion is intriguing but repeats the obvious.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Apr 8, 2018
9/10 86% A Bag of Marbles (Un sac de billes) (2018) First-rate example of making difficult history relateable to younger generation...Lovely, clever boys' war story movingly imparts history about the Holocaust and family.‐
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2018
9/10 100% Keep the Change (2018) The most original romcom in years...infuses this traditional format with more empathy and sweet sincerity than is usually found in this genre...for a special date movie.‐
Read More | Posted Mar 21, 2018
8/10 98% Leaning Into the Wind (2018) Delicately documents recent work, from constructing permanent installations to seasonally temporary, and creating ones so fleeting they can only be seen through this film‐
Read More | Posted Mar 10, 2018
7/10 95% Foxtrot (2018) Brings satirical tradition of Catch-22 to the Israeli Defense Forces...Some irony may be lost on foreign audience...but U.S. will appreciate caustic theater of the absurd. ‐
Read More | Posted Mar 4, 2018
6/10 71% West of the Jordan River (2018) Interviews mostly liberal Israeli politicians, journalists, and activists in civic organizations working to bridge the gap the government won't cross--feels sadly dated .‐
Read More | Posted Jan 25, 2018
9/10 88% The Post (2018) Absorbing First Amendment thriller rousing success due to behind-scenes business: feminist evolution of Kay Graham (sterling Streep) and step-by-step how feat was achieved .‐
Read More | Posted Jan 19, 2018
6/10 77% In the Land of Pomegranates (2018) Amidst tense airings of grievances, context is set against beautiful images of the disputed homeland, archival footage, and personal testimonials of clashes and cooperation.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
6/10 89% The Force (2017) Seeming transparency, earnest meetings, and revised training procedures all turn out not to have revealed the rotten core of business-as-usual ethics after all.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 17, 2017
8/10 79% Cielo (2017) 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.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 8, 2017
9/10 100% Trouble No More (2017) 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.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2017
7/10 92% Spielberg (2017) 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. ‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2017
8/10 71% The Opera House (2018) Rare stills, marvelous footage, glorious archival performance music, and five-decade experiences of charming fans who are the institutional memory, and full of anecdotes‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2017
6/10 67% Sea Sorrow (2017) 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.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2017
6/10 No Score Yet Hall of Mirrors (2017) 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.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2017
6/10 57% Caniba (2018) Approach is abstract aesthetic of exploring transgressive desire...into fascinating look at fundamental, eternally problematical human relationship- sibling love and rivalry.‐ Maven's Nest
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2017
7/10 91% Arthur Miller: Writer (2018) She interviewed [her father] for decades...Adds personal and archival photographs, home movies, and talks with relatives and friends, this is a warm and intimate reflection.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2017
7/10 89% Boom for Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquiat (2018) Movingly remembers him -forever young--as unique figure who connected punk, hip hop, hardcore, DIY films, gallery, graffiti and street art, across genres, classes, and races.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2017
9/10 94% The Rape Of Recy Taylor (2017) Forceful family interviews, immersive location visits, letters, testimony and articles from Afr-Am papers bring you into 1944 Alabama night...supported by NAACP's Rosa Parks.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2017
10/10 99% Faces Places (Visages, villages) (2017) Marvelously creative collaboration with JR extends Varda's unique career and impact...combines her planning and wide-ranging connections with his improv and exuberant energy.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2017
9/10 88% First They Killed My Father (2017) Uniquely takes child's eye view of brutal rule of Khmer Rouge in Cambodia...This powerful look back will keep this genocide fresh in mind of viewer, hopefully sensitize them.‐
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2017
9/10 97% Mudbound (2017) Fresh take on the old-fashioned, socially conscious, epic melodrama...for stunning re-creation of rural Mississippi in the 1940s...with return [of] veterans...gorgeous film.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 17, 2017
8/10 88% Song of Granite (2017) Uses an impressionistic, avant-garde style to capture the essence of Joe Heaney, who is considered Ireland's greatest 20th century singer in the sean nós, "old style."‐
Read More | Posted Nov 17, 2017
6/10 78% No Stone Unturned (2017) Uncovers level of government impunity that should change how law enforcement works with intelligence services, though the implications of broader applicability get lost here.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
5/10 87% Let the Sunshine In (Un beau soleil intérieur) (2018) Attracting an array of lovers and male admirers, from too young to too married there's more philosophizing than romance or sex, some verge on selfish clichés of rom coms.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Nov 6, 2017
7/10 96% Zama (2018) Reinvents the historical epic by bringing to life an absurdist look at an unnamed, isolated late 18th Century Spanish colony in South America.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Nov 6, 2017
8/10 72% Spoor (Pokot) (2017) Powerfully capitalizes on the superstitious perception of women being close in touch with nature to call out for environmentalism...Strikingly filmed.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Nov 6, 2017
8/10 99% Lady Bird (2017) Smartly refreshes the rebellious teen girl a sympathetic way that could appeal to teens and mothers.‐ FF2 Media
Read More | Posted Nov 6, 2017