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Thursday, August 21, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 70.0° F  Mostly Cloudy
The Daily

MOVIES

UW Cinematheque expands for fall 2011 season

Last winter at Chicago's Gene Siskel Film Center, I saw Claude Lanzmann's 10-hour Holocaust documentary Shoah as it ought to be seen: in a theater with strangers, over the course of one long, sorrowful, uncomfortable day. You won't get exactly that experience next month, when UW's Cinematheque screens the landmark 1985 film on consecutive Sundays, but it's still a must-see. >More
 Mississippi housekeepers have their say in The Help

In The Help, Aibileen Clark (Viola Davis) is a veteran housekeeper in 1963 Jackson, Miss., raising the latest of the many white children for whom she has been a surrogate mother. She's approached by Skeeter Phelan (Emma Stone), a recent college graduate and aspiring writer who wants to create an anonymous collection of first-person stories about black housekeepers' experiences. >More
 30 Minutes or Less fails to find laughs in a ruthless plot

An action comedy that uses a suicide vest loaded with C4 as its central plot device had better be funny or, at least, thrilling. Otherwise the narrative device will detonate, and the results won't be pretty. >More
 Damaged comedians take a driving tour in The Trip

The Trip, about two comedians who go on a foodie tour through northern England, was first broadcast in the U.K. as a six-part miniseries and then shaved down and shaped into a feature-length picture. The result is a colicky, melancholy comedy that is all shadings and little arc. It's terrific. >More
 The Change-Up toys with the body-swap comedy

Whatever entertainment there is in The Change-Up probably comes from its adherence to the conventions of the "body swap" comedy. Its disappointments rest squarely on its misguided attempts to think outside the body-swap box. >More
 Page One follows The New York Times into the future

No doubt about it, David Carr is a fascinating guy. The raspy-voiced media columnist is the star and narrator of the documentary Page One: Inside the New York Times, and the film shows lots of vintage Carr action. >More
 The Greatest Movie Ever Sold mocks product placement

I feel certain that until I watched the comic documentary The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, I had never before heard Ralph Nader utter these words: "How's the arch support?" Nader asks that unexpected question as director, cowriter and star Morgan Spurlock interviews him about the perils of advertising. >More
 48 Hour Film Project Madison: Backyard Superhero Party

Isthmus videographer Ben Reiser entered the 48 Hour Film Project last week with Backyard Superhero Party as th result. Enjoy! >More
 Friends With Benefits is a raunchy take on romantic comedy

In theory, Dylan (Justin Timberlake) and Jamie (Mila Kunis) are on the same page. They're both bruised from recent breakups, which take place on opposite coasts in the first minutes of Friends With Benefits. Both bust-ups end with Dylan and Jamie, the dumped parties, vowing to keep it simple from here on out. >More
 An 84-year-old man learns to read in The First Grader

The First Grader is being distributed by National Geographic Entertainment, and, as you might expect, it is gorgeous to behold. The arid Kenyan landscapes are stunningly photographed, and so are the images of bustling Kinshasha. Extras have a way of breaking out into exuberant dances, and these sequences are lovely. >More
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