Kirsten Johnson's new Netflix documentary, Dick Johnson Is Dead, tells the story of moving her dad out of his home in Seattle and into her apartment in New York. It also enacts her father's death from imagined accidents, like getting hit in the head by a falling air conditioner or tripping on a crack in the sidewalk.
Johnson has worked as a cinematographer for over 50 documentaries, and has directed seven movies, including Cameraperson and the short film The Above. She says her father laughed when she pitched the idea to him.
This year, Radha Blank became the second Black woman to earn that prize for her first feature, The Forty-Year-Old Version. It was a worthy winner, not just because it's a terrific movie, but also because it's specifically about the challenges of making meaningful, personal art from an underrepresented perspective.
Tehran, is a new eight-episode Israeli show premiering on Apple TV+. A big hit in Israel earlier this year, this thriller about a spy mission gone wrong isn't merely suspenseful. It's a glimpse of how one ancient culture portrays another ancient culture — particularly one that's currently its avowed enemy.
Justin Chang says the film is based on a densely plotted 2011 novel by the Ohio-born author Donald Ray Pollock, and it's grim in ways that can be both exciting and a little wearying: so many twists and betrayals, so many horrific acts of violence.