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Apr 24th
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New Movies week of Oct. 1

film_burning_plain_ver3THE BURNING PLAIN Mexican filmmaker Guillermo Arriaga (longtime scriptwriter for Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu on films like Babel and 21 Grams) directs this multi-layered drama about various disparate, but obscurely interconnected people along the border towns of New Mexico, in search of love and redemption. Kim Basinger, Charlize Theron, Jennifer Lawrence, and John Corbett co-star. (R) 111 minutes.

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film_capitalism_a_love_storyCAPITALISM: A LOVE STORY (R) 127 minutes. (★★★1/2)
See Review by Lisa Jensen >>>

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THE INVENTION OF LYING Ricky Gervais co-wrote, co-directed, and stars in this romantic comedy about an alternative world where everyone always tells the truth—until Gervais' sad-sack character discovers the joys and unexpected complications of lying. Jennifer Garner, Jonah Hill, Jeffrey Tambor, and Fionnula Flanagan co-star; Rob Lowe and Tina Fey have featured roles. (PG-13) 100 minutes.

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film_toy_story_twoTOY STORY and TOY STORY 2 Pixar's frisky, funny, cleverly-written animated series about the secret life of toys when the kids who love them are not around returns to the big screen for a two-week engagement—in 3D! Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles, Wallace Shawn, Jon Cusack, and Kelsey Grammer head the voice cast, for director John Lasseter. See them big, and get psyched up for Toy Story 3, due in theaters in June, 2010. (G) (★★★★)—Lisa Jensen.

 

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film_whip_itWHIP IT Think of Whip It as somewhat of a Cinderella story, a coming-of-age tale where the happy ending is all about discovering what you love, who you are and what lengths you will go to remain true to yourself. Hard not to like that. But Drew Barrymore hits a creative homerun in her directorial debut. Whit It shines for a number of reasons. What Barrymore is able to do, and do well, is give her audience somebody—and something—to care about. Enter the embraceable Ellen Page. As a small-town Texas gal, she’s the proverbial everywoman. She finds her bliss by accident at an Austin roller derby girl night. Soon, she’s part of the team as "Babe Ruthless.." Marcia Gay Harden, Kristen Wiig and Juliette Lewis (all delivering fine performances) costar alonside Jimmy Fallon, Landon Pigg, and Barrymore herself. This is the feel-good film of the season. (PG-13) 111 minutes. (★★★1/2)—Greg Archer.

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film_zombielandZOMBIELAND Poor Jesse Eisenberg just can't seem to get off the boardwalk. First, he starred in Adventureland, and now, in this new zombie horror comedy, he plays a self-confessed coward forced to team up with macho Woody Harrelson in shepherding a group of refugees to a distant amusement park, where they hope to be safe from the encroaching zombie menace. Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin co-star for rookie director Ruben Fleischer. (R) 83 minutes.

 

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SPECIAL EVENT THIS WEEK: FILM DISCUSSION WITH MORTON MARCUS Join film scholar, poet, and raconteur Morton Marcus, at the (Nickelodeon or Del Mar) this Saturday for an incisive  discussion of a current movie. This week: THE BURNING PLAIN Special film screening at 11 am. Discussion begins at 1 pm, and is free and open to the public.  For more information call 426-7500, or check Nickelodeon/Del Mar ad this issue.

SPECIAL EVENT THIS WEEK: ITALIAN FILM SERIES Contemporary and classic Italian films highlight this series (one Sunday a month) organized by the Dante Alighieri Society of Santa Cruz to promote Italian culture and language. This Week: La ragazza del lago (THE GIRL BY THE LAKE) Tony Servillo stars in this 2008 mystery as a detective from Southern Italy investigating a murder at a remote northern lake. Based on a novel by Norwegian crime writer Karin Fossum. Andrea Molaioli  directs. (Not rated) 95 minutes. In Italian, with English subtitles. At the Vets Hall (846 Front Street, downtown Santa Cruz), Sunday only, 7 pm. Suggested donation: $5.

CONTINUING SERIES: MIDNIGHTS @ THE DEL MAR Only $6.50. This week: FIGHT CLUB Brad Pitt stars as a charismatic nutball who introduces stressed-out worker drone Edward Norton to life on the edge in the urban underworld of illegal, bare-knuckle boxing in this cult foray into rampant machismo from David Fincher.  (R) 99 minutes. Fri-Sat midnight only. At the Del Mar.

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Best of Santa Cruz County 2014

The 2014 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll Come on in, and have a look around. There’s a lot to see—hundreds of winners selected by thousands of GT readers across Santa Cruz County. So if some of this looks familiar, it’s probably because you helped make it happen. But there are always new things to discover, too—you could go to a different winner or runner-up every day in the Food and Drink category alone, and you’d be booked just about until next year’s Best of Santa Cruz County issue comes out.

 

Something Essential Disappears

Lunar and solar eclipses follow one another. Lunar eclipses occur at full moons, and solar eclipses at new moons. Two weeks ago at the full moon we had the blood red moon—a total lunar eclipse (the next one is Oct. 8). On Monday night, April 28 (new moon), as the Sun, Moon and Earth align, a solar eclipse (Sun obscured) occurs. Eclipses signify something irrevocably is changed in our world. The Sun is our essential life force. Monday’s new moon, 9 degrees Taurus, is also an annular solar eclipse when the Moon moves centrally in front of the Sun, yet does not cover the Sun completely. The Sun's outer edges, still visible, form a “ring of fire” around the Moon.

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

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Palate-Stretching 101

A wine education with Soif’s experts As a veteran of many weekend wine “seminars” at Soif, I have to confess that I’ve never known less (going in) and learned more (coming out) than I did last week at the Spanish Wine Tasting with ace rep Brian Greenwood. These are classy, casual events and it’s hard to imagine having this much flavor fun anywhere for $20.

 

Martin Ranch Winery

Sauvignon Blanc 2011 One of my favorite wines is Sauvignon Blanc, and this one made by Martin Ranch is particularly lovely. Bright, crisp and refreshing, it’s perfect to pair with fish and shellfish—and good for picnics as it has an easy screw-cap bottle. There’s nothing worse than setting down your blanket, pulling out your sandwiches—and then realizing you don’t have a corkscrew.

 

Foodie File: Red Apple Cafe

Breakfast takes center stage at Gracia Krakauer's Red Apple Cafe Before they moved to Aptos, Gracia and her husband Dan Krakauer would visit friends in Santa Cruz County and eat at the Red Apple Café all the time. Then they moved up here from Santa Monica five years ago, and bought the Aptos location (there’s a separate one in Watsonville) from the family who owned it for two decades.

 

How would you feel about a tech industry boom in Santa Cruz?

I feel like it would ruin the small old-town feeling of Santa Cruz. It wouldn’t be the same Surf City kind of vacation town that it is. Antoinette BennettSanta Cruz | Construction Management