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Sunday, December 28, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 23.0° F  Fair
The Daily


Wilmington on DVD: Lebanon, Hotel Terminus, Army of Shadows, Rita Hayworth, Takers, Stone, Jack Goes Boating

Lebanon. Spring 1982. The war. We are inside an armored tank with four Israeli soldiers, in Beirut, in the throes of the Lebanon War. The battle is a raging hellfield punctuated with death, only barely comprehensible to the men or to us. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: The Social Network, Cronos, On Faith and Reason, Le Combat de l'Ile

The Social Network -- David Fincher and Aaron Sorkin's high-style, computer-wise tale of flashy programs and dirty deeds behind the 500 million-user Internet hookup phenomenon Facebook (or at least their version of it) -- has definitely become this year's hot thing in award-caliber, critic-certified, "must-see" movies. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Howl, Busby Berkeley, Dinner for Schmucks, Machete

Howl is the great Beat poem by that great Beat poet, Allen Ginsberg, and this movie both visualizes (and animates) the poem, with all its evocations of Fritz Lang, Rimbaud and Walt Whitman to show us a '50s world and, in Howl, "the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness starving hysterical, naked searching for an ancient connection in the starry dynamo of night." >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Soul Kitchen, The Black Pirate, America Lost and Found: The BBS Story, The American, And Soon the Darkness

Fatih Akin's Soul Kitchen is as nervy, fast-moving and hard-edged as Head On or The Edge of Heaven, but its mood and motive are much sunnier, bubblier. It's a comedy, a bawdy and delicious one, about a Greek-German restaurant owner-manager trying to make a go of a hip little eatery called Soul Kitchen -- ensconced in a large space in an industrial area of Hamburg, full of comfort food and jumping with pop music. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, The Night of the Hunter, Salt, Easy A

A sequel to Oliver Stone's 1987 Wall Street, this show plunges us back into the seductions and pitfalls of the casino mentality on the trading floors and the stock market, of inside guys making huge, quick profits and the dangerous games and ruinous consequences of playing with other people's money, other people's lives -- and not giving a damn about it. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: The Town, Mother and Child, Despicable Me, The A-Team

The Boston of Ben Affleck's The Town -- and of The Departed, Mystic River, Gone Baby Gone and other recent thrillers, Dennis Lehane-derived or not -- is decades away from the morally bent city of that great 1973 neo-noir The Friend of Eddie Coyle. But it has a similarly chilly temperature, the same clipped sense of smart-ass New England doom and Kennedy-accented cynicism welling up from the mean, sullen streets. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Inception, Shrek Forever After, Restrepo, Bomber, Antichrist

Christopher Nolan's Inception -- with Leonardo DiCaprio as a tortured guy who shoves dreams into your head -- is obviously some kind of masterpiece. It's a truly mind-bending science fiction movie about the power of dreams, the persistence of memory, the anguish of lost love, the chains of conscience and maybe as much as anything else, the sheer lunatic joy of making a big, crazy action movie spectacular with no rational limits on either your budget or your imagination. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Metropolis, The Bridge on the River Kwai, Knight and Day, Twilight Saga: Eclipse, Going the Distance, Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Metropolis, Fritz Lang's great, spellbinding science fiction epic about a futuristic city gone mad, has been regarded as a cinematic classic since almost the very hours of its premiere, in Berlin in 1927. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Flipped, Modern Times, Apocalypse Now/Apocalypse Now Redux

For the past few years, I've been looking, yearning even, for a few American studio movies that would make me feel the way I sometimes did as a movie-going kid -- digging among all the obvious trash or sappy dreck of so-called family movies today for that old kind of warm, smart, good family show, the sort that had great characters, that depended for its impact on personality, writing, "invisible direction" and a strong connection to the culture outside. Rob Reiner just made one. Flipped >More
 Wilmington on DVD: The Kids Are All Right, Chaplin, Clash of the Titans, Lottery Ticket

The Kids Are All Right is the kind of top-quality medium-budget movie they should definitely make more often in Hollywood: a smart, realistic, humane script with lots of savvy contemporary observations, and good parts for excellent actors. >More
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