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Arts & Culture
9:52 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Film Review: The French-English Hybrid 'Chinese Puzzle' Celebrates Complicated Lives

Cécile De France, Romain Duris, Kelly Reilly, and Audrey Tautou in 'Chinese Puzzle.'
Credit courtesy of Cohen Media Group

There's a scene in Cédric Klapisch's warm, exuberant comedy Chinese Puzzle that perfectly captures both the beauty and complications of a life well lived. A discussion between two men (one living, one a hallucination) proposes that a piece of embroidery is an apt metaphor for the human condition: on one side is a lovely picture of a moment captured in time. But turned over, one sees all of the knotty entanglements.

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Up to Date
10:42 am
Fri July 18, 2014

DVD Gurus: World War II

'Sink the Bismarck!' is on our DVD Gurus' list of World War II flicks.

They fought on the beaches, in the air, on the sea... and on film. World War II made an indelible mark on pop culture, and it's especially evident on the silver screen.

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Up To Date
9:00 am
Wed July 16, 2014

A Fistful Of Spaghetti Westerns

Clint Eastwood, the young American star in the 1964 Italian Western, "A Fistful of Dollars"
Credit Clint Eastwood for A Fistful of Dollars / Wikimedia Commons

A half century ago, nobody expected much of Sergio Leone’s 1964 Italian Western A Fistful of Dollars – not even its young American star, Clint Eastwood. On Wednesday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske explores how this film's fiery success ignited the popularity of an entire genre known as "spaghetti westerns".

Guests:

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Up to Date
1:04 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' July 11-13

'Begin Again' made Steve Walker's list for this weekend.

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of July 11-13? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Steve Walker:

  • Obvious Child
  • Begin Again
  • Ida

Cynthia Haines:

  • Ida
  • A Hard Day's Night
  • Chef
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Up to Date
12:56 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

What's Showing In Independent, Foreign & Documentary Film, July 11

Critics Cynthia Haines and Bob Butler weigh in on films showing on area screens, including 'The Love Punch.'

Examine the personal relationships of three disturbed couples and hear the controversy about the political influence of two conservative Kansas billionaires.  

On Friday's Up to Date, our indie, foreign, and documentary film critics examine the latest films showing on area screens.

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Up to Date
3:10 am
Sat June 28, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' June 27

Credit Canal+ Polska

  Up to Date's independent, foreign and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Chef
  • Belle
  • Ida (English subtitles)

Steve Walker:

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Arts & Culture
12:05 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Film Review: To Woo A Big Factory, Tiny Village Plots 'The Grand Seduction'

Brendan Gleeson and Taylor Kitsch work out some father-son issues in Newfoundland in "The Grand Seduction."
Credit 2014 Entertainment One Films

When independent films feature a small town and a huge corporation at their core, they are usually depicted as foes like David and Goliath – the good and the average against the lumbering giant.

Local Hero from 1983 comes to mind, as does Promised Land, the recent movie about fracking in the Midwest. The Grand Seduction, however, reverses that formula, proving that the battle lines aren’t always drawn that cleanly.

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Arts & Culture
10:00 am
Tue June 24, 2014

4 Films To See At The Kansas City LGBT Film Festival This Weekend

A scene from the film, 'To Be Takei.'
Credit Courtesy of Sundance Institute

As the march toward full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in America advances at varying speeds, there remains a sense that the LGBT community can still be marginalized in the movies. That's what makes film festivals like Out Here Now so relevant to the LGBT communities and their staunch allies.

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Up To Date
9:00 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' June 13

"For No Good Reason" explores the connection between life and art through the eyes of seminal British artist, Ralph Steadman.
Credit Sony Pictures

Up to Date's independent, foreign and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Chef
  • Belle
  • For No Good Reason

Steve Walker:

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Arts & Culture
6:28 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Film Review: 'Night Moves' A Morality Tale Where Environmental Activism Turns Deadly

Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning, and Peter Sarsgaard star in 'Night Moves,' directed by Kelly Reichardt.
Credit Courtesy / Tipping Point Productions/Cinedigm.

In Kelly Reichardt’s astonishingly good thriller Night Moves, a trio of environmental activists gets trapped in a political and deadly morass of their own making. Played by Jesse Eisenberg, Dakota Fanning and Peter Sarsgaard, they demonstrate to a fault what happens when passion for a cause is trumped by human frailty.

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Up to Date
12:41 pm
Fri June 6, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' June 6

Joaquin Phoenix and Marion Cotillard star in 'The Immigrant.'

Need to take refuge from the downpours this weekend? Up to Date's independent, foreign and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Ida
  • Chef
  • Belle

Steve Walker:

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Up to Date
10:48 am
Fri June 6, 2014

What's Showing In Independent, Foreign & Documentary Film, June 6

The Polish film 'Ida' is on our critics' list this week.

Take a trip with a Polish nun in training, who finds out her family history isn't what she thought, and navigate the murky world of social media with an outspoken chef.

On Friday's Up to Date, the indie, foreign and documentary film critics join us to talk about what hot-- and what's not-- on your local silver screen.

This week, they discussed:

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Up To Date
5:30 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' May 30-June 1

Credit thehornetsnestmovie.com

Looking for a great film to see during the weekend of May 30-June 1? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Fed Up
  • The Hornet's Nest
  • The Lunchbox

Steve Walker:

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Film
6:00 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Film Review: In East Texas, Blood Runs 'Cold In July'

Sam Shepard, Michael C. Hall, and Don Johnson form an unlikely trio seeking vengeance in 'Cold in July.'
Credit courtesy: IFC Films

There's a deliberate seediness to the Texas noir Cold in July that makes it both entertaining and calculating. Directed by Jim Mickle, it stars Michael C. Hall as Richard, an ordinary man around whom extraordinarily violent things happen, all triggered by an act of self-defense that leaves a home intruder dead and his living room splattered with brain matter like a Jackson Pollock.

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Up to Date
12:24 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Inside The Creative Mind of William Joyce

William Joyce has captivated young audiences and their parents with his whimsical and imaginative characters in film, TV, and in books.  The creator of Rolie Polie Olie and The Guardians of Childhood has a new book and film, The Numberlys.  Joyce talks with Steve Kraske about what inspires the characters he creates.

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Up To Date
4:32 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' May 23-25

Critics Cynthia Haines and Steve Walker recommend "Fed Up," the documentary "that the food industry doesn't want you to see."

Looking for a great film to see during the long holiday weekend of May 23-26? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • The Hornet's Nest
  • Only Lovers Left Alive
  • The Lunchbox

Steve Walker:

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Harvest Public Media
8:00 am
Fri May 23, 2014

'Fed Up' Links Obesity Epidemic to Sugar, Industry, Government

Scene from 'Fed Up,' an activist documentary that focuses on childhood obesity.
Credit RADiUS-TWC

Just who’s to blame for the childhood obesity epidemic? Over the years, the finger has been pointed at parents, video games and vending machines, to name a few.

To the makers of the new activist documentary, “Fed Up,” the bottom line of blame lies with a simple substance poured into our diets every day: sugar. And the pushers of what this film calls a drug and “the new tobacco” are the food industry and our own government.

“What if our whole approach to this epidemic has been dead wrong?” the film’s narrator, TV journalist Katie Couric, says in the film’s open.

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Arts & Culture
6:58 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Film Review: Embedded With U.S. Troops Fighting In 'The Hornet's Nest'

ABC News journalist Mike Boettcher embeds himself and his son with U.S. troops in Afghanistan in "The Hornet's Nest."
Credit Courtesy / HighRoad Media

For all the comic book mayhem thrust on summer movie audiences, there’s never a sense that anything’s at stake besides how much money the studios will bank. That’s what makes the new documentary The Hornet’s Nest – a movie about a real war, not one constructed of computer graphics - essential viewing to people crying out for substance.

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Up To Date
11:00 am
Fri May 16, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' May 16-18

'Only Lovers Left Alive' is on critic Cynthia Haines' 'Three to See' list this week.

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of May 16-18? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Finding Vivian Maier
  • Joe
  • Only Lovers Left Alive

Steve Walker:

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Up to Date
11:36 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' May 9-11

'Finding Vivian Maier' is on Cynthia Haines' list this weekend.

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of May 9-11? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Finding Vivian Maier
  • Joe
  • Particle Fever

Steve Walker:

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Up To Date
12:25 pm
Fri May 2, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' May 2-4

Nicolas Cage stars in 'Joe,' two of our independent, foreign, and documentary film critics' 'Three to See.'
Credit Lionsgate Films

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of May 2-4? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

Steve Walker:

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Up To Date
12:14 pm
Fri May 2, 2014

What's Showing In Independent, Foreign & Documentary Film, May 2

Kristin Wiig and Guy Pierce star in 'Hateship, Loveship,' one of our critics' films to see.
Credit IFC Films

From stories about severe nymphomania to vicious alien femme fatales, our reviewers' material is challenging to say the least.

On Friday's Up to Date, our independent, foreign, and documentary film critics return to look at some of the new films opening on local screens.

In addition to reviewing new films, we talk with "Hateship, Loveship" director Liza Johnson about her decision to cast comedienne Kristin Wiig in a serious role.

Our critics' list:

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