Film

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: 

Thunderclouds have been gathering in the skies, so you might need a few rainy day activities for your weekend. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics might have just the thing to start off your spring. 

Cynthia Haines:

  • Wild Tales
  • What We Do In The Shadows
  • Diplomacy

Steve Walker:

If you've got spring fever and want to get out of the house this weekend, Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few suggestions of what you can see.

Cynthia Haines:

  • What We Do In The Shadows
  • Wild Tales
  • Diplomacy

Steve Walker:

In 2013, fairy homes — with doors custom-built for the hollows of trees and tiny furniture nestled inside — cropped up on a wooded trail in Overland Park. Firefly Forest, as it was called, appeared as if by magic. People tucked hundreds of notes into these small abodes, listing their struggles and dreams. And, to their surprise, the fairies answered.

It's starting to feel like spring, and if you want to celebrate the warmer weather, Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have some ideas for you.

Cynthia Haines:

  • Diplomacy
  • Mr. Turner
  • Red Army

Steve Walker:

This story is part of True/False Conversations, a series of in-depth interviews with the filmmakers of this year’s True/False Fest.  Find the rest of them here or download the podcast on iTunes.

Back in 2008 filmmaker Ed Cunningham heard a strange story on the news about a man who bought a barbecue smoker at an auction and found a severed human leg inside. A legal battle ensued between the finder of the foot and the man it once belonged to.


The Man who is ‘Almost There’

Mar 6, 2015

This story is part of True/False Conversations, a series of in-depth interviews with the filmmakers of this year’s True/False Festival.  Find the rest of them here or download the podcast on iTunes.

83-year-old artist Peter Anton was only known in his community of East Chicago before filmmakers Dan Rybicky and Aaron Wickenden stumbled into his life. The film “Almost There” follows Anton as the filmmakers become his caretakers and advocates for his art exhibit, which quickly becomes controversial.


The weather may be cold, but area theaters are showing some movies that are red hot. Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have some ideas that might chase that chill away.

Cynthia Haines:

  • Leviathan
  • What We Do In The Shadows
  • Song of the Sea

Steve Walker:

Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics are getting into the Oscar spirit. If you want to do the same, check out one of their favorites playing on area screens.

Cynthia Haines:

  • Mr. Turner
  • Two Days, One Night
  • Song of the Sea

Steve Walker:

  • Still Alice
  • Mr. Turner
  • Two Days, One Night

In 1915, a famous director and an aggressive journalist battled over the inherent racism in the film, The Birth of a Nation. On this edition of Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with author Dick Lehr about the controversy behind this influential and infamous film. 

Guest:

Whether you want to celebrate Valentine's Day with dinner and a movie or distract yourself from the day of Cupid, Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few ideas of what you can see on the silver screen.

Cynthia Haines:  

  • Two Days, One Night
  • Mr. Turner 
  • Oscar-nominated short films

Steve Walker:

One woman is given the weekend to convince her co-workers to give up their bonuses or lose her job, and another becomes obsessed with the suicide of a member in her support group. On Friday's Up To Date, our independent, foreign, and documentary film critics discuss these films and other movies playing now, plus the Oscar nominated live action, documentary, and animated shorts.  Films opening today:

  • Two Days, One Night

Films already showing:

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