Film

From a beautiful but treacherous mountaintop to post-World War II Germany to a contemporary senior home, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics' choices will take you far and wide on your holiday weekend.

Cynthia Haines

Meru, R

  • It is visually stunning. It is incredibly intense, suspenseful— it’s got everything going for it. I would put Meru on the top of any list that has to do with mountaineering.

Phoenix, PG-13

Whether you want to view World War I from the trenches, explore the war's Christmas truce or cruise the skies, our Video Gurus have something to feed your historical need. Check out what they had to say on this edition of Up to Date.

All Quiet on the Western Front, unrated (before current ratings)

Explore the world of David Foster Wallace. Find out if you really can tell someone's sexuality by their voice. Jump into the fiery rhetoric as it flies between Gore Vidal and William Buckley. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary critics have found a wide variety of options to spice up your weekend.

Cynthia Haines  

Listen To Me Marlon, not rated

The documentaries are thick on the ground this week, whether you want to explore of the life of Marlon Brando, take on the warring voices of Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley or watch a man confront the effects of a genocide. Or, if you're not in the mood for serious contemplation, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary critics also have a comedy in mind for you.

Cynthia Haines

Best of Enemies, R

The kids have gone back to school, and maybe it's time for you to go back to the movie theater. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a few ideas to spruce up your weekend.

Cynthia Haines

Best of Enemies, R

  • The thing that’s quite amusing is the pompous attitudes of these men and their accents.

Mr. Holmes, PG

Association for Visual Arts, Chattanooga

In yet another opportunity for fun with fast Internet, Kansas City's videographers, film editors and musicians have been challenged to a 48-hour contest with another gigabit city: Chattanooga, Tennessee.

A tale about murder takes a dark turn in Kansas, and on another screen, Robin Williams gives his final cinematic performance. This week's selections from Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics are all over the board when it comes to emotions.

Cynthia Haines

Boulevard, R

  • A closeted gay man forms a bond with a young male prostitute

Tangerine, R

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Check out the story of two transgender prostitutes or duck gunfire from Mexican drug cartels. This week's selections from Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics take you to many different worlds.

Cynthia Haines

Amy, R

  • Searing documentary about singer Amy Winehouse

Tangerine, R

  • Dramedy about two transgender prostitutes in Los Angeles on Christmas Eve

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, PG-13 

The only thing as hot as the weather are the films being touted by the Up to Date indie, foreign and documentary film critics.  Beat the heat with some cool films.

Cynthia Haines

Amy, R

  • Searing documentary about singer Amy Winehouse

Tangerine, R

  • Dramedy about two transgender prostitutes in Los Angeles on Christmas Eve

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, PG-13 

Meet actor and Kansas City native Mark Patton. During the 1980s, he was an openly gay actor in Hollywood. After starring in Nightmare on Elm Street 2, his big-screen career took a hit because of homophobia in Hollywood. Patton is back in town for a screening for one of his movies, Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean.

Follow the downward spiral of singer Amy Winehouse or fight Argentinian mercenaries this weekend-- but do it from the comfort of an air-conditioned movie theater. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics can steer you to the right vicarious adventure this weekend.

Cynthia Haines

Amy, R

  • Searing documentary about singer Amy Winehouse

Ardor, R

You can go back in time with Kate Winslet and Alan Rickman or stay in the present with a group of teenagers facing a serious issue. Whatever your preference, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have options for your weekend film-viewing.

Cynthia Haines

Wolfpack, R

Whether you're in the mood for a senior citizen romance or set on a journey to the 17th century, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics can help you navigate the many movie listings to find one that fits you.

Cynthia Haines

Wolfpack, R

A Hollywood idol filled the spotlight but had to hide his feelings from the world, and a widow discovers she can turn over a new leaf. Emotions swell in Up to Date's indie, documentary and foreign film critics' choices this week. Whether you need a good cry or a hearty laugh, they've got a suggestions for you.

Cynthia Haines

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, PG-13

  • A teenager befriends a classmate diagnosed with cancer.

Ex Machina​, R

Within the predictable summer onslaught of overstimulated superheroes in crushing surround sound, it’s refreshing to find a charming and funny antidote in "I’ll See You in My Dreams." Directed and co-written by Brett Haley, the movie stars Blythe Danner as Carol, a widowed resident of a retirement village who finds companionship with one man around her age and another some forty years younger. Both of them succeed at whittling away the tough barriers she thought she has needed around her.

A French policeman tries to vanquish a drug ring and a computer programmer finds himself drawn into a surreal world in the films Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics are watching this week. Explore these and the others on their lists this week:

Cynthia Haines

About Elly, not rated

  • A young teacher from Tehran disappears during a seaside outing.

Far From the Madding Crowd, PG-13

The mysterious disappearance of an Iranian teacher intrigued Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics this week, and just as a new Thomas Hardy adaptation has delighted them. To see what drew them to theater, try one of their picks for yourself. 

Cynthia Haines

About Elly, not rated

  • A mysterious young Iranian teacher disappears during a weekend by the sea.

Far From the Madding Crowd, PG-13

From a nonagenarian with style to an independent Victorian lady, films on area screens this week have a wide variety of topics. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics can help you navigate the many movie listings to find one that fits you.

Cynthia Haines

Ex Machina, R

  • A computer programmer is hired to test a new form of artificial intelligence.

Far From the Madding Crowd, PG-13

photo: EG Schempf / Collection of the Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, California

Brooklyn-based artist Adam Cvijanovic paints on sheets of a tough, durable product called Tyvek. It's often used to wrap or protect a building during construction, but for Cvijanovic it provides the canvas for his large-scale portable murals.

"I am really interested in narrative because I'm very interested in time," says Cvijanovic. "And I think painting as a plastic art, as a frozen moment in time, can offer insights into it."

Can you tiptoe through the raindrops to the movie theater this weekend? If you can get there, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a few suggestions for you.

Cynthia Haines

Ex Machina, R

  • A computer programmer is hired to test a new form of artificial intelligence.

Far From the Madding Crowd, PG-13

  • Three suitors pursue an independent Victorian woman.

Seymour: An Introduction, PG

Need something to fill the hours of your three-day weekend? Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a few suggestions for you.

Cynthia Haines:

Ex Machina, R

  • A computer programmer is hired to test a new form of artificial intelligence.

The Wrecking Crew, PG

  • Documentary about legendary studio musicians

Seymour: An Introduction, PG

If your spring allergies have you hiding inside, our indie, foreign and documentary film critics have the perfect entertainment ideas for you.

Cynthia Haines:

The Wrecking Crew, PG

  • Documentary about legendary studio musicians

Dior and I, not rated

  • Behind-the-scenes documentary featuring the preparation of the first haute couture collection by creative director Raf Simmons for the fashion house Christian Dior 

Clouds of Sils Maria, R

Lightning has been striking all over the metro this week, and Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a few recommendations to light up your weekend--without the rain.

Cynthia Haines:

Wrecking Crew, PG 

  • Documentary about legendary studio musicians

Ex Machina, R

  • A computer programmer is hired to test a new form of artificial intelligence.

Seymour: An Introduction, PG

If you prefer the light of a movie theater to sunshine, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have some suggestions for your light sources this weekend.

Cynthia Haines

Clouds of Sils Maria, R

  • A veteran actress confronts ageism.

Ex Machina, R

  • A young computer programmer is hired to test a new type of artificial intelligence.

Seymour: An Introduction, PG

The Gnomist

When Sharon Liese started to hear buzz about tiny fairy homes in an Overland Park forest, she knew it was something special. On this edition of Up To Date, Steve Kraske speaks with Liese about how she and her crew discovered the stores of the three women she features in her 19-minute documentary film, The Gnomist.

This weekend has it all: rain, Royals and a whole slate of films for you to try. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary critics have some suggestions to guide your appointment with the silver screen:

Cynthia Haines

Seymour: An Introduction 

  • Inspirational documentary about 88 year old pianist Seymour Bernstein 

Wild Tales 

It's severe weather season in Kansas city, and that means you'll want a some options for rainy day activities. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary critics have a few for you:

Cynthia Haines

  • Wild Tales
  • The Hunting Ground
  • What We Do in the Shadows

Steve Walker

  • The Hunting Ground
  • While We're Young
  • Wild Tales

Andrea and Annie, two students at the University of North Carolina, couldn't have had a worse college bonding experience. During their freshman year, both were sexually assaulted. The trauma united them to speak out about how badly sexual assault victims are treated on U.S. college campuses.

Subsequently followed across the country by Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering, the director and producer of the startling new documentary The Hunting Ground, the young women manage to amass an army of like-minded survivors.

Radius TWC

  In a new twist on classic horror films, a sexually transmitted  demon stalks a group of Detroit teenagers in It Follows.  This is just one of the plots our critics review in a roundup of independent, foreign, and documentary film. 

Among the other plots discussed is a young woman in the center of a love triangle, personal stories of vengeance in Argentina, and a British soldier abandoned on the streets of Belfast following a riot. 

The critics weigh in on what's good, what's bad and what's ugly. 

Films discussed during this program: 

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