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Saturday, January 31, 2015 |  Madison, WI: 34.0° F  Overcast
The Daily


Wilmington on DVD: Project Nim, The Rum Diary, A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas

Few films in recent years have moved and disturbed or impressed me as much as Project Nim, James Marsh's documentary about the chimpanzee named Nim Chimpsky, of his life and hard times, of his rise and fall, of how he was taught to be almost human and then punished for being a chimpanzee. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Drive, The Big Year, Dream House

Drive is an L.A. street action movie to tighten your throat, twist your guts and set your pulse racing. But there's thought in the show too. Story-wise, it's lean, mean and stripped to the bone, but it's also drenched with modish, chic visual style and a few ideas about modern life and what it does to us and others. Especially the drivers. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: 50/50, Real Steel, Identification of a Woman

Your best friend looks you in the face and tells you that he has a rare form of spinal cancer and that his chances of survival, according to the doctors, are 50/50. What do you say? What can you say? In 50/50, the best friend, a good-hearted loudmouth named Kyle (played by Seth Rogen), listens and points out to Adam (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) -- with whom he works at a Seattle radio station -- that in casino, 50/50 would be the best odds at the table. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Moneyball, Don't Be Afraid of the Dark, The Ideas of March

Baseball is a great American game, and a great American sports myth as well -- and it's also, at times, a business, a gamble, a crud-boatload of media hype, and last, and maybe best of all, a kind of national secular bridge-building semi-religion. Amazingly, Moneyball -- based on a real-life season with the Oakland Athletics and their real-life general manager, Billy Beane -- hits all those bases and sometimes more. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Contagion, The Adjustment Bureau, Jane Eyre

Steven Soderbergh's Contagion begins with a cough in the dark -- something mundane, and ordinary, if irritating, that soon grows into something else: an explosion of fear, death, lawlessness and hysteria. As the movie proper begins, a title soon informs us that it's Day Two of the epidemic, or pandemic. Whatever happened on Day One? Eventually -- but not for a while -- they'll tell us. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Tokyo Drifter, Straw Dogs, Colombiana, Love Crime

Off the wall and over the edge from its first scene to its last, Tokyo Drifter is one of the outrageous crime melodramas and outlandish neo-noirs made in the '60s for Nikkatsu Studio by super-cult Japanese director Seijun Suzuki. It's a classic B-movie, made cheaply and quickly and with maximum audacity. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Dragon Tattoo Trilogy, Dolphin Tale, Warrior

In scorcher of a Swedish crime thriller trilogy, Noomi Rapace, as Lisbeth, the tattooed beyond-the-fringe investigator/suspected murderess/hacker heroine, and Michael Nyqvist as Mikael, her muck-raking leftist journalist/ally, tear off the scab-memories from some old sociopolitical wounds. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Midnight in Paris, Kung Fu Panda 2, Buck

Midnight in Paris is a funny valentine to the City of Light, a sweet, jazzy fairy tale about the wonders of Parisian art and artist cliques in the '20s. It shows us writer/director Woody Allen at his current best -- which, for me, is plenty good enough. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Friends with Benefits

I liked Rise of the Planet of the Apes very much -- even though it's obviously better directed (and acted) than it is written. The best of Rise is so damned wonderful, and the worst of it so damned silly, that it's sometimes hard to believe, as you watch it, that you're in the same movie you were in 10 minutes or so ago. >More
 Wilmington on DVD: The Help, Cowboys & Aliens, The Debt

Set in Jackson, Miss., in 1963, and based on the bestseller by Kathryn Stockett, The Help feels like one of those warm, feisty, character-rich books that strike a public chord even if some critics remain uncharmed: the story of a group of African American women servants, who work for the city's elite white families. >More
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