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Sep 02nd
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Film

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Research and Destroy

Research and Destroy

Father-son academic rivals face off in wry, yet perceptive 'Footnote'

History and literature are full of fraught relationships between fathers and sons—from Kronos and Zeus to Darth Vader and Luke. Somewhat less epic is the father-son friction between rival Talmudic scholars at the heart of Footnote, an offbeat Israeli comedic drama about family, ambition, and recognition within the cloistered realms of Academia. Written and directed by American-born Israeli filmmaker Joseph Cedar, the film toddles along at its own measured pace, yet becomes engrossing as the moral dilemma at its core shapes up. The film's wry humanity earned it a Foreign Language Oscar nomination this year.

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Reviews and Times

Film, Times & Events: Week of Apr 19

Film, Times & Events: Week of Apr 19

Films This Week
Check out the movies playing around town.
With: Reviews, FOOTNOTE, MARLEY
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Film, Times & Events: Week of Apr 12

Film, Times & Events: Week of Apr 12

Films This Week
Check out the movies playing around town.
With: Reviews, BULLY
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Intolerance

Intolerance

Gripping new doc 'Bully' exposes schoolyard epidemic

For many people, middle/junior and high school are ordeals to be slogged through on the way to one's "real" life. Yet, there's never any shortage of chirpy idiots around trying to convince us that these are "the best years of your lives." Tell it to Alex, Ja'Meya, Kelby, and Tyler, the real-life teen heroes and heroines struggling (or failing) to survive their school years in Lee Hirsch's gripping documentary, Bully. If, like me, you'd rather not spend another nanosecond inside of a school, even virtually, Bully will be a kind of endurance test—which is why it limns the endurance test of middle/high school with such effective and sobering clarity.

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Cracked Glass

Cracked Glass

Fractured fairy tale 'Mirror Mirror' goes for the yuks

Did you hear the one about Snow White and the Seven Stooges? That's the prevailing sensibility in Mirror Mirror, the first of two dueling Snow White movies due out this spring. (The second, Snow White and the Huntsman, opens June 1.) Directed by the sometimes-brilliant Tarsem Singh (The Fall), Mirror Mirror tells the oft-told tale with plenty of visual pizzazz and the grrrl power element that's become de rigueur in updated fairy tales. Unfortunately, the emphasis on campy slapstick—especially among the dwarfs—is almost as fatal as a poison apple to the project.

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Film, Times & Events: Week of Apr 5

Film, Times & Events: Week of Apr 5

Films This Week
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With: Reviews, MIRROR MIRROR
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Salsa Caliente

Salsa Caliente

Sexy, simmering 'Chico & Rita' dances to a Latin drummer

Spanish filmmaker Fernando Trueba's buoyant, brooding Chico & Rita is a cool, spicy salsa of love, jealousy, politics, betrayal, and fame. It pulsates with glamorous images, sensual yearning, vintage cars and nonstop music in a sprawling romantic drama of sex, drugs, and bebop jazz that stretches from pre-revolutionary Cuba to Broadway, Hollywood, Paris, Las Vegas, and finally back again to the Cuba of Fidel Castro.

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Film, Times & Events: Week of Mar 29th

Film, Times & Events: Week of Mar 29th

Films This Week
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With: Reviews Chico & Rita,
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Fish Story

Fish Story

Great cast, funny script, in charming 'Salmon'

Getting to hear the always-watchable Ewan McGregor act in his own Scots accent (more or less) is only one of the many small charms in Salmon Fishing In the Yemen. A clear-headed,yet open-hearted romantic comedy-drama about impossible dreams and unlikely alliances, the film is directed by Lasse Hallström with his usual touch of warm fuzziness, spiced up here with a dash of political satire, and a frisson of cross-cultural utopianism. But the themes never intrude too deeply on the film's sneaky sense of fun.

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Great Catch

Great Catch

Ewan McGregor on ‘Salmon Fishing …’  the state of today’s independent films and the trick to catching memorable roles

Whether he's playing an enigmatic Jedi (Star Wars I, II, III) or a befuddled albeit loyal son (Beginners), Ewan McGregor sports a certain élan not often present in most of today's leading men—aside from George Clooney perhaps. Having discernment for the roles he takes on certainly helps, but the way McGregor fully embodies the characters he plays is unique and captivating.

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The Meaning of ‘LIFE’

With a new documentary film about his work, and huge exhibits on both coasts, acclaimed Santa Cruz nature photographer Frans Lanting is having a landmark year. But his crusade for conservation doesn’t leave much time for looking back

 

Seasons of Opportunity

Everything in our world has a specific time (a season) in which to accomplish a specific work—a “season” that begins (opportunity) and ends (time’s up). I can feel the season is changing. The leaves turning colors, the air cooler, sunbeams casting shadows in different places. It feels like a seasonal change has begun in the northern hemisphere. Christmas is in four months, and 2015 is swiftly speeding by. Soon it will be autumn and time for the many Festivals of Light. Each season offers new opportunities. Then the season ends and new seasons take its place. Humanity, too, is given “seasons” of opportunity. We are in one of those opportunities now, to bring something new (Uranus) into our world, especially in the United States. Times of opportunity can be seen in the astrology chart. In the U.S. chart, Uranus (change) joins Chiron (wound/healing). This symbolizes a need to heal the wounds of humanity. Uranus offers new archetypes, new ways of doing things. The Uranus/Chiron (Aries/Pisces) message is, “The people of the U.S. are suffering. New actions are needed to bring healing and well-being to humanity. So the U.S. can fulfill its spiritual task of standing within the light and leading humanity within and toward the light.” Thursday, Aquarius Moon, Mercury enters Libra. The message, “To bring forth the new order in the world, begin with acts of Goodwill.” Goodwill produces right relations with everyone and everything. The result is a world of progressive well-being and peacefulness (which is neither passive nor the opposite of war). Saturday is the full moon, the solar light of Virgo streaming into the Earth. Our waiting now begins, for the birth of new light at winter solstice. The mother (hiding the light of the soul, the holy child), identifying the feminine principle, says, “I am the mother and the child. I, God (Father), I Matter (Mother), We are One.”

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of August 28

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Land of Plenty

Farm to Fork benefit dinner for UCSC’s Agroecology Center, plus a zippy salsa from Teresa’s Salsa that loves every food it meets

 

If you knew you had one week to live, what would you do?

Make peace with myself, which would allow me to be at peace with others. Diane Fisher, Santa Cruz, Network Engineer

 

Comanche Cellars

Michael Simons, owner and winemaker of Comanche Cellars, once had a trusted steed called Comanche, which was part of his paper route and his rodeo circuit, from the tender age of 10. In memory of this beautiful horse, he named his winery Comanche, and Comanche’s shoes grace the label of each handcrafted bottle.

 

Cantine Winepub

Aptos wine and tapas spot keeps it casual