Review: M.F.A.

Title: M.F.A.
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Director: Natalia Leite
Starring: Francesca Eastwood, Clifton Collins Jr., Leah McKendrick
Runtime: 1 hr 32 mins

What It Is: Noelle (Eastwood) is a bright young art student. One night she accepts an invite to go to a party hosted by handsome classmate Luke (Peter Vack). It is here where she is brutally raped. After telling her school about the incident they seem less than helpful. She returns to Luke’s home, where tragedy strikes and sets Noelle on a course she had no idea was the right one for her the whole time.

What We Think: There’s a certain level of manipulation I’m willing to withstand for the sake of giving the story time to develop and surprise. This film supersedes that threshold and makes you hate how blatant it’s socio-political message is. Francesca Eastwood’s performance begins well but slowly travels the of the ham. As the script, written by supporting actress McKendrick, goes on it just hammers its message home in an unrelenting assault on the audience. I’m all for female empowerment but cheese and rice Leah. If Eastwood had not asked would Clifton Collins Jr. have taken this role? Clifton Collins Jr. who’s married to the starlet really have does this film? Leite really does nothing with the camera to surprise you.

Our Grade: D+, I understand the connection between Leite and the material but man was this a slog to get through. After finishing this one I wanted to cleanse my palette with like a cheesy action film or something. Mind you that is, and probably never will be my go to. Eastwood feels like she could fair well in better projects. We know what Clifton Collins Jr. brings to the table. The man is a spectacular character actor. I cannot recommend this one. Unless you’re cool with an anti-rape message which, though poignant and pointed feels all too heavy-handed. Also M.F.A. for your information stand for Masters of Fine Arts. I knew you’d probably ask.

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