Half Magic Review
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In recent months, people in Hollywood—and in other industries, as well—have started a kind of revolution, speaking out against sexism and harassment. In more than 30 years in Hollywood, Heather Graham has most likely seen her share—and in her writing and directing debut, Half Magic, she sets out to break the cycle.

Half Magic stars Graham as Honey, a Hollywood D-girl who’s tired of being treated like an inferior by every man she’s worked for or dated (sometimes both at the same time). When she attends a feminine empowerment seminar on a whim, she meets two kindred spirits. Candy and Eva (Stephanie Beatriz and Angela Kinsey) are both in toxic relationships with men who treat them horribly. And as their friendship grows, the three women encourage each other to fight for respect instead of continuing to accept the same old treatment.

Half Magic isn’t really a Hollywood story. Sure, the main character dreams of breaking out of her role in development and finally seeing one of her female-centric screenplays produced—but this isn’t just a Hollywood issue. Honey’s new friends are a fashion designer and a would-be witch—strong women who allow themselves to be manipulated and mistreated by the men they claim to love.

The story that follows is completely relatable. Most women have seen—or been in—the same situations. We’ve been put down or undervalued at work. We’ve been in one-sided or painful relationships. Yet we’ve kept on giving, hoping that things would magically change. And, in Half Magic, the women set out to do something about it—to stand up for themselves and take pride in who they are and what they do.

Of course, as you might expect from a film that was written and directed by Heather Graham, it’s about as fluffy and flighty as possible (in case you couldn’t tell by the characters, whose names are anything but strong and professional). The women attend a wacky empowerment seminar where Molly Shannon yells about her lady parts. They chant and light candles in an attempt to fix their lives. And Honey writes her own brand of girl-power movie that’s about as ridiculous as it could possibly be. And that mix of honesty and kookiness makes for one quirky comedy about female empowerment.

Half Magic is a far-from-serious film about a very serious issue—and, for that reason, it all feels a little off-balance. But while it’s all done in the flightiest way imaginable, it’s a whole lot more perceptive that you might expect.

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