CherryPicks Comes and Takes Rooftop

While CherryPicks is about the critical end of the female gaze, our ultimate mission is to diversify voices all along the creative spectrum. We asked some of the filmmakers involved in Rooftop Films’ screening Come and Take It, a series of unbecoming short films by and about bold women, to explain why diversity in criticism matters to them as artists.

“As filmmakers we have highly personal, unique perspectives of the world – which are then reflected in our work. Not everyone is gonna get it, not everyone is gonna like what you do, but someone might find some personal truth in what you are saying. It’s important to be true to your voice but also to be tough on yourself – how could I have said this better? Finding the critical voices that tear you down are just as important as the ones who become your champions.” – Madeleine Sims-Fewer & Dusty Mancinelli (Slap Happy)

“We think everyone should use the opportunity to raise their voice – regardless of the medium in which you work. As filmmakers we are fundamentally interested in comment and focus on topics that we consider to receive too little attention. Our films can change viewing habits and hopefully open new thinking spaces. Hopefully that critical thinking is actually the start of every artistic activity…” – NEOZOON (Call of the Wild)

“As a filmmaker, it’s important to be open to different critical point of views. These point of views can come from journalists, film critics, viewers, juries, etc. It is always very interesting and nourishing to hear all of them. I create films so that people see them and discuss them, so for me it’s important to give some attention to the responses I receive. For my last film, ”The Clitoris”, I explored a subject that is not discussed a lot and that is quite taboo, which is female sexuality. I was anxious and excited to know how it would be received by the critics and the public. In the end, I received a lot of good comments, which are obviously easy to process. I was surprise to receive very few negative comments (most of them concerned how I treated Freud in my film), because I thought I would shock some people.” – Lori Malépart-Traversy (Le Clitoris)

“What is art? Nobody knows. What is art for? Nobody knows. What makes art good? Nobody knows. (If anyone tells you these are simple questions, you should unfollow them now. Go ahead, I’ll wait.) And yet, art is so important, not in some abstract way but in an everyday way. Art brings us into contact with the wholeness of existence. Art makes meaning out of chaos. and it might be what makes humans human. Encouraging diversity of opinion on art, and on these unanswerable questions, will bring us closer to the truth — and also it will be more interesting.” – Penny Lane (Normal Appearances)

“I come from a country that had been occupied and under a thick cloud of propaganda for decades in the past. Now, more than ever, we can see how propaganda can be disguised as breaking news and how social media give platform to all kinds of voices that are hard to navigate in. Critical voices, especially those in cinema, literature or performance art, are able to bring around different perspectives, experiences and approaches and shine a light not only on the past, but on the present as well, which is essential especially in today’s world. By contextualizing, analyzing and reflecting the world we live in, these voices speak to the concerns of those, whose voices are usually not heard but whose voices matter the most.” –Ivana Hucíková (Into My Life)

“To me, critical voices, especially from varied perspectives, are essential to growth. As filmmakers, we put work out there and we’re processing ideas as we create, but the other half of the creative process is understanding how that work lands and what conversations outside itself it may contribute to. Critical voices are a sign that there’s a healthy and active community and not only is that fun to be part of, it feels very vital right now.” –Sarah Keeling (Into My Life)

“As someone who works in documentary film specifically, my whole job revolves around looking at the diverse perspectives presented by a movement, series of events, or an individual. Critical voices help round out this chorus and provide it with an analytical backbone that can either help inform my own view of the events or against which I can work to fashion something new. Documentary is strongest when it is analytical and critical, when it looks beyond what is merely happening in front of the camera and provides deeper reflection.” –Grace Remington (Into My Life)

CherryPicks is a new voice in the critical conversation, sharing unique and nuanced perspectives on media with reviews, ratings and original content through a female lens; stay tuned for our full launch in fall 2018. Right now, you can get your fix of the female critical POV in your inbox every other Wednesday in our, CherryBites newsletter. Sign up to join the conversation and be the first to know when our full site launches! We’re also posting roundups and reviews on Instagram and Twitter.