Tribeca 2022: Day 1 | Huesera, Petit Mal, Family Dinner, and The Wild One

The 2022 Tribeca Film Festival began on Wednesday, June 8, 2022. Though I am fashionably late to the festival, I am thrilled for another great celebration of diverse storytelling, intricate filmmaking, and you guessed it… horror films! Though my Watchlist consists of 32 films from all categories, I’m worried I won’t get through them all by the festival’s end. But that definitely won’t stop this film gal from trying!

I started the 2022 Tribeca Film Festival with a bang. Truth be told, the entire day was filled with wonderful films that I am eager to watch again as soon as they premiere. Here are my Day 1 reviews of the 2022 Tribeca Film Festival:

Huesera | Director: Michelle Garza Cervera

Courtesy of XYZ Films

Synopsis: Valeria has long dreamed about becoming a mother. After learning that she’s pregnant, she expects to feel happy, yet something’s off. Nightmarish visions and an unshakeable paranoia have her questioning what she wants, and an ancient evil spirit may be the cause.

Review: Is it too late to claim my favorite of the 2022 Tribeca Film Festival as Michelle Garza Cervera’s Huesera? Probably. And truth be told, I’m probably letting my horror biases and festival excitement influence my decision here. But I don’t care. Huesera is my kind of film. With an excellent sound design from Christian Giraud that matches the intensity of every moment felt by Natalia Solián’s Valeria, this is one of my early “films to beat.”

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Petit Mal | Director: Ruth Caudeli

Courtesy of Tribeca Film Festival

Synopsis: In director Ruth Caudeli’s latest collaborative chronicle of queer life, three charismatic women living in an intimate, passionate partnership must learn to navigate the shift in their dynamic when one lover is called away for a long-term project. 

Review: Ruth Caudeli’s Petit Mal is the type of film that’s always hard for me to get into at first. But once it gets going, it soars into an experience that is well worth the journey. The best types of movies, for me, are ones that enable me to feel, even though I may not understand the experiences by the lead characters. And that’s exactly what Petit Mal did for me, and it’s why I already cannot wait to watch this emotional rollercoaster centered around love, relationships, and independence.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Family Dinner | Director: Peter Hingl

Courtesy of Fons PR | Photo by: Gabriel Krajanek

Synopsis: Overweight and insecure, Simi spends Easter weekend with her famous nutritionist aunt. The hope is that it’ll help her get on a healthier track, but as the aunt’s family’s icy dynamics and an increasingly malevolent atmosphere leave Simi feeling uneasy, weight isn’t the only thing she’s about to lose.

Review: There’s always that one project at film festivals that causes me to scream internally. This year, the first film to do that was Peter Hingl’s Family Dinner. I wouldn’t dare spoil anything about this movie to those who are interested. But let me just say this: it is deliciously twisted.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Wild One | Director: Tessa Louise-Salomé

Courtesy of Petite Maison Productions

Synopsis: Jack Garfein — Holocaust survivor, theater and film director, key figure in the formation of the Actors Studio — vividly, animatedly, passionately recalls a life where historical tragedy and personal art formed a unique, driving, uncompromising vision.

Review: Jack Garfein’s story and body of work are remarkable ones that will fascinate audiences from the moment the documentary first starts. However, I do think there are some choices in the way his story was presented that prevented me from becoming fully invested. Stylistically, Tessa Louise-Salomé has an eye for visual framing. But I would have loved to connect more in an emotional way. I think audiences will be split on this one — based on their existing knowledge of Garfein’s legacy.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Thanks for tuning into my Day 1 roundup of the 2022 Tribeca Film Festival. This day set a high bar, but I’ve got a great feeling about tomorrow. Which films from this list interests you most?

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