In this, one of our newest recurring feature, you'll get you the low-down on all the can't-miss, female-centric entertainment highlights coming up this week. Just think of it as our list of Totally Awesome Things That Will Remind You Why It Rocks To Be A Woman. Don't worry, you can thank us later.
10. Film: The Ghosts in Our Machine
Queer auteur filmmaker Liz Marshall is best when she’s able to fuse character studies and cinematic storytelling with social and environmental justice issues, and some of her previous work is among the best of its cannon. Lesbians may know her from the time she spent on the road documenting the life of bisexual folk icon Ani DiFranco. With her newest film, The Ghosts in Our Machine, the results of her usual mix is startling, compelling, and not easy to walk away from. After her partner Lorena Elke, a longtime vegan and animal rights activist, opened “her eyes in a deeper way to the intersectionality of social justice issues,” Marshall turned her lens on another lenswoman, acclaimed photographer Jo-Anne McArthur, who photographs animals used for food, clothing, entertainment, and biomedical research. It’s a haunting story that takes plac e over a year throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. McArthur’s photos bring to life the “ghosts” who are the “animals trapped within the cogs of our voracious consumer world.” It’s heartbreaking and haunting and necessary. Watch the trailer below. — Diane Anderson-Minshall
9. FILM: The Truth About Emanuel
“My name is Emanuel. I’m 17 years old, and I killed my mother,” begins the trailer for The Truth About Emanuel, a suspenseful and sensual thriller that will screen this weekend. In the film, the mother of Emanuel (Kaya Scodelario), died while giving birth to her. But after a young lifetime deprived of a maternal bond, Emanuel seizes an opportunity to develop one when a stranger (Jessica Biel), who bears a striking resemblance to her deceased parent, moves in next door. The pair grows close when Emanuel volunteers to babysit for her neighbor’s infant child, a relationship that is soon pushed to its limits by secrets and obsession. Written and directed by Francesca Gregorini, The Truth About Emanuel will show Sunday at 4:45 p.m. and Monday at 9:15 p.m. at the 36th Annual Starz Denver Film Festival. Watch the trailer below. -Daniel Reynolds
8. Book: What Will It Take to Make a Woman President?
In her new book, What Will It Take to Make a Woman President? Conversations About Women, Leadership, and Power, prolific writer Marianne Schnall is asking the question we all want to know: why isn't a member of the better sex leading this nation? The founder of Feminist.com talks to some of our smartest women to get to the bottom of the query, getting answers from Gloria Steinem, Nancy Pelosi, Olympia Snowe, Maya Angelou, and Melissa Etheridge. Schnall looks at not only the obstacles that keep women from the Oval Office, but what needs to change to get one there. Out now, from Seal Press. -Neal Broverman
7. Music: The Blow
The Blow, a band that has seen several shifts in personnel, returns now with a lineup of founder Khaela Maricich and her girlfriend, Melissa Dyne. The self-titled album is the first from the Blow in seven years, and it promises
a new sound that's been described as catchy electro-pop. Catch the Blow in concert in Brooklyn and Philadephia this weekend, and order the new disc here. Watch The Blow perform "Make It Up" live below. —Trudy Ring
6. Video: Lovers' "Tiger Square"
The feminist rockers known as Lovers — Carolyn Berk, Kerby Ferris, and Emily Kingan — offered an intimate portrait of female friendship and sexuality on the group’s seventh album, A Friend in the World, which came out in September. And now the Portland, Ore.-based trio has released their first "proper video" from the album: "Tiger Square" Watch the video for the song below, and find out more about the band, including tour dates, here. —Sunnivie Brydum
5. BOOKS: Bandette, Volume One: Presto!
Dark Horse Comics publishes the first collection of bisexual artist Colleen Coover's digital comic series about costumed teen burglar Bandette and her coterie of street urchins who both break and aid the law. Written by Paul Tobin and Alberto J. Albuquerque, with Albuquerque, Steve Lieber, Erika Moen, Jonathan Case, and Jennifer Meyer contributing art along with Coover. Preview and order the volume here. -Trudy Ring
4. Theater: ¡Ser!
Writer-performer Karen Anzoategui's world premiere show tells the hilarious story of a queer Latina's strained relationship with her two homes — Los Angeles and Buenos Aires — and her quest for love. The play directed, by Marcos Nájera, features original music written by Cava and Walter Miranda in collaboration with Louie Pérez of Los Lobos, performed live by Cava, Miranda, Shaunte Palmer, and Clinton Cameron. This Latino Theater Company production opens November 15 at the Los Angeles Theatre Center in downtown L.A., and performances continue Thursdays through Sundays till December 8. There will be a catered reception after the November 16 performance and a discussion following the next day's matinee. Click here for info and tickets. -Trudy Ring
3. Music: Beatles Reimagined
If you thought the Beatles were dead, you’re only half-right. Or you’re probably still in your 20s, in which case Beatles Reimagined is the perfect synth-heavy album for you. The debut from the Community Projects label includes 12 new covers of early Beatles tunes, including "She Loves You" and "I Feel Fine," as performed by a range of indie bands including The Well Ponies and Badwolf.
Reimagined is unquestionably a new take on songs that it's hard to believe are 50 years old, and some tracks on the album are barely recognizable as Beatles’ songs altogether. But that’s to be appreciated. The album is meant to be reimagined, not simply redone. And bands like Gypsy Death Star definitely have quite a reimagination.
The most recognizable group on the album is Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, who recorded a folk version of the classic "I Saw Her Standing There," the first track on the Beatles' very first album in 1963. This track, unlike the majority of the album, is a little less remained, and more soothing to the hardcore Beatles fan.
Listen to Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros play “I Saw Her Standing There” below. —Michael Regula
2. DVD: Under the Dome
The Stephen King-based miniseries about a small town trapped under an invisible dome was the hit of the summer with its story of diverse characters whose lives are disrupted, including lesbian couple Carolyn and Alice (Aisha Hinds and Samantha Mathis), who were caught in the dome while transporting their rebellious teenage daughter to a rehab camp. All 13 episodes are now out on DVD and Blu-ray, with a plethora of behind-the-scenes features and an interview with King. The deluxe Blu-ray edition, with an additional disc of bonus features, is available exclusively on Amazon.-Trudy Ring
1. EVENT: Bent-Con
Bent-Con celebrates LGBT contributions in pop culture, sci-fi, horror, comics, fantasy, gaming, and geekdom all weekend long. From Friday to Sunday, the Los Angeles Burbank Marriott Airport and Convention Center will be packed with panels, galleries, screenings, gaming, artistry, and the most well-costumed parties this side of Comic-Con. We're especially looking forward to the Pop-Up gallery, and the panel, "Qweirdos! LGBTQ voices for a generation of gay geeks and freaks," including our own Diane Anderson-Minshall. Find more info at Bent-Con.org. — Michelle Garcia