There’s nothing preachy about Jinn, even though Nijla Mu’min’s elegant debut feature is about a teenager coming to terms with her mother’s newly embraced religion.
Shine could easily be called The Salsa Kings Dance With Pride and Love. Anthony Nardolillo devotes a sizable chunk of his first film to dance numbers, and there’s an infectious joy to these scenes, more about the characters than does the creaky melodrama that frames them.
Just as the Extraordinary Ordinary People he profiles have devoted themselves to keeping traditional art forms alive, folklorist Alan Govenar has dedicated himself to exalting their work in books and films. His knowledge and affection are contagious.
A straightforward performance film benefits one-person shows that are conversational or invoke characters through voice and gesture, but that doesn’t suit Okwui Okpokwasili’s demanding multidisciplinary piece, Bronx Gothic.
Fiona Gordon and Dominique Abel’s signature style blends screwball and romantic comedy with playful fantasy, but Lost in Paris lacks the magical elements of their previous features (Iceberg, Rumba, and The Fairy, co-directed with Bruno Romy).