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Friday, December 19, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 26.0° F  Overcast
The Daily


WALL-E: Mechanical genius

You've got to hand it to Pixar, the friendly folks behind such movies as Toy Story, Finding Nemo, The Incredibles and Ratatouille: They never rest on their laurels. They've revolutionized the world of animation and made billions of dollars doing it, but they keep pushing themselves and keep pushing us. (Ratatouille was a rat, for crissakes.) With WALL-E, their latest release, they almost seem to be pushing us aside. >More
 Hancock:Bad good guy

What do you get when you mix a superhero with an anti-hero? Super-Anti-Hero-Man! And although that idea was already floated this summer, with great success, in Iron Man, here's Hancock, an action-comedy that features a superhero so anti-heroic even kids, who should love him, think he's an asshole. We first see Hancock on a Los Angeles street, out cold, sleeping off the night before, like some derelict who just happens to have super-strength and the ability to fly. But the fact that he's played by Will Smith, the most likable guy on the face of the planet right now, suggests that a makeover is in the offing. Indeed it is, in a movie that, like Hancock himself, has its share of problems but nevertheless rises to the occasion, soaring above our comic-book-movie expectations. >More
 WYOU presents Madison flicks in 36-Hour On Air Film Fest

Madison has seen a tremendous surge in independent filmmaking over the last few years, a trend that only looks to be building. More affordable cameras and editing software has lowered barriers to entry, particularly in the ongoing explosion of documentaries, and the online video revolution has led to a whole new audience for an ever-increasing legion of shorts. Now many of these local creations have been compiled into the 36-Hour On-Air Film Festival, a fundraiser marathon of movies that will be shown on WYOU Channel 4 this weekend. >More
 Get Smart: Mission: Improbable

One of these days we'll run out of old TV shows to resurrect, and then what will we do? In its late-'60s heyday, Get Smart was always good for a laugh. Don Adams delivered his lines like they were stray bullets whizzing toward the wrong targets, and the spy-versus-spy high jinks engaged in by CONTROL and KAOS were a nice joke on the similar shenanigans engaged in by the CIA and the KGB. But that was then, and this is now -- well, maybe not. >More
 Roman de Gare

Claude Lelouch is the Robin Leach of French cinema, a gold-plated peephole into the lives of the rich and famous, with their yachts and caviar and graceful lunges toward l'amour. He's still best known in this country for that old tub of Dream Whip, 1966's A Man and a Woman. But with Roman de Gare, his latest opus to come our way, Lelouch seems to have reinvented himself - literally, in the sense that he wrote and directed it under a pseudonym, metaphorically in the sense that this isn't the kind of movie we expect from him. >More
 The Love Guru

Having spent five years licking his wounds, Mike Myers has now put The Cat in the Hat behind him and is back with The Love Guru. >More
 Found Footage Festival is back in Madison, bigger and sexier than ever

Awkward sexual harassment in the workplace reenactment videos, flamboyant 1980s exercise tapes, and ridiculous home movies unite in the latest edition of the Found Footage Festival, a touring collection of discarded video clips that are, usually unintentionally, gut-bustingly funny. Returning Madison for the third time with their show, Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett meld ironic chuckles with the "old school charm" of stumbling upon strange discoveries. >More
 The Happening: M. Night Shyamalan self-destructs

Something's happening in The Happening, a mystery that nobody can adequately explain, and I'm not talking about the airborne toxin that's turning the industrial Northeast into a mass grave of suicide victims. I'm talking about the complete disintegration of M. Night Shyamalan as a director. >More

Like a cork borne along by the tide, Jellyfish floats toward you for 78 minutes, then goes on its bleakly merry way. Why it's called Jellyfish I'm not quite sure, since it doesn't have much of a sting. But it's surprisingly buoyant for a movie about the lost connections between parents and children, husbands and wives, who we'd like to be and who we turned out to be. >More
 You Don't Mess With the Zohan: Commando style

What's going on? First, Harold and Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay tweaked the War on Terror, and now You Don't Mess With the Zohan takes on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Who knew that mainstream comedies could be so geopolitical? And who ever expected Adam Sandler to lead the way? >More
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