At a cocktail party during the Austin Film Festival, “Mad Men” creator Matthew Weiner couldn’t stop thinking about the uncertain future of the popular television drama’s costumes and props as the date of the finale neared when a stranger suggested a possible solution.
What if the struggles in your past prepared you for a better future? This hopeful message propels writer-director Riz Story’s indie drama “A Winter Rose.” Unfortunately, the film’s hopeful intentions and solid performances fail to overcome forced melodrama, amateur direction and a heavy-handed soundtrack.
Though many films seek to inform, critique or transform their audience, others simply entertain. “Rules Don’t Apply,” Warren Beatty’s first film in 18 years, is the latter — a fun yet shallow piece
Austin-based writer-director Jeff Nichols has delivered one critically successful film after another, from thrillers like “Take Shelter” to the coming-of-age drama “Mud” and science fiction movie “Midnight Special.”