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Film - Reviews and Times

New Movies week of Sept. 24

New Movies week of Sept. 24

ASTRO BOY A futuristic Pinocchio for a generation that grew up with the old Japanese cartoon series, this is a big screen adaptation of the story of a boy robot built by a lonely inventor who finds acceptance when he defends his city against a band of monster robots. Freddie Highmore, Nicolas Cage, and  Kristen Bell provide voices. David Bowers (Flushed Away) directs. (PG)
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Film - Reviews and Times

Movie Review: Three For The Road

Movie Review: Three For The Road

Mother, sons, come of age in funny, affectionate ‘My One And Only’

Nobody has ever mistaken George Hamilton for a serious actor—including himself. Indeed, his self-deprecating sense of humor has served him well throughout a long career that began as a male starlet in the early 1950s and segued well into the age of irony, where Hamilton is best known for his killer tan, and comedy spoofs like Zorro, The Gay Blade. So it’s not surprising to find so much sly wit and affectionate good humor in My One And Only, a fictionalized memoir produced by Hamilton about his own teen years with his eccentric, yet intrepid, mother.

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Film - Reviews and Times

Movies Out This Week

Movies Out This Week

CLOUDY WTH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS Adapted from the children's picture book by Judi and Ron Barrett, this animated feature revolves around a small-town inventor who creates a phenomenon by which food rains down from the sky. Bill Hader, Anna Faris, and Bruce Campbell provide voices. Chris Miller and Phil Lord direct. (PG) Starts Friday.

 

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Film - Reviews and Times

New Movies week of Sept. 3

New Movies week of Sept. 3

9 Rookie filmmaker Shane Acker expands his Oscar-nominated animation short into this "stitchpunk" puppet-animation feature. In a post-apocalyptic future, after the machines have oblitrated humanmankind, it's up to a plucky band of hybrid creatures imbued with the spark of life to revive the spirit of humanity. Elijah Wood, Christpher Plummer, Jennifer Connelly, and John C. Reilly provide voices.  (PG-13) 79 minutes.

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Film - Reviews and Times

New Movies just out

New Movies just outAdoration - Drama, Reviewed by Lisa Jensen
Tetro - Drama, Reviewed by Lisa Jensen
The Hurt Locker - Drama
Unmistaken Child - Documentary
Film - Reviews and Times

Adoration, Blind Faith

Adoration, Blind FaithReligion, intolerance, identity, explored in talky, but intriguing drama ‘Adoration'
The title is apt. In Adoration, the tautly-constructed new drama from individualistic Canadian indie filmmaker Atom Egoyan, the central image is a large, hand-painted wooden Crèche scene, a holiday lawn display whose cut-out figures represent the Adoration of the Magi, complete with metallic gold halos.
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Film - Reviews and Times

TETRO

TETRO

Francis Ford Coppola is out of the giant, make-or-break blockbuster biz and back making small indie movies for the sheer joy of it. His newest, Tetro, is such an adventure in technique, style, and pure cinematic brio, it almost doesn’t matter that the story gets away from him the fourth act, and the film runs about 30 minutes too long. You can have too much of a good thing, and the sins of admission in Tetro detract from otherwise masterful storytelling, but there’s still plenty of swoony delight to be had in the look of the film and the operatic scope of its story.

 

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Film - Reviews and Times

THE HURT LOCKER

THE HURT LOCKER

Veteran action movie director Kathryn Bigelow is getting plenty of buzz over this epic drama about U.S. military bomb squad technicians risking their lives in the streets of Baghdad. Prize winner at the 2008 Venice Film Festival, and called by one critic "the first great Iraq War movie," the film stars Anthony Mackie and Brian Geraghty as part of the counter-insurgency force specially trained in diffusing homemade bombs whose unit is taken over by a reckless new tam leader (Jeremy Renner) just weeks before their tour of duty is up. Ralph Fiennes, Guy Pearce, and David Morse have featured roles. (R) 131 minutes.

 

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Film - Reviews and Times

UNMISTAKEN CHILD

UNMISTAKEN CHILD

Filmmaker Nati Baratz goes behind the scenes into the secret and mysterious world of Tibetan Buddhism for this documentary about the search for the reincarnation of a recently deceased holy man. Given his mission by the Dalai Lama himself, a young monk who grew up attending the holy man consults astrologers and sets out for a remote village, where he goes door-to-door in hopes of being enlightened enough to recognize his former master in the child he seeks. (Not rated) 102 minutes.

 

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Film - Reviews and Times

Star Trek: Warp Speed Ahead

Star Trek: Warp Speed AheadRevamped ‘Trek’ will live long and prosper because it boldly goes where no ‘Star Trek’ has gone before

Tricky time-space continuums, a nasty thirst for revenge and stealing kisses with Uhura aren’t the only things that will make your head turn—or your mind spin—in Star Trek. The acting is above par (good news indeed), the script is (relatively) tight and there are actual moments of real suspense. It’s the latter that may stun most because the last time audiences felt more than an inkling of suspense in a Trek film it was back in 1986 with Star Trek IV.

But this isn’t your father’s Star Trek. Not anymore.

It’s director J.J. Abrams’ (Alias, Lost)—at least for now. Actually, it’s really the Trek of Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, the hot writing team behind Transformers and TV’s Fringe. Together, they create a bold new Trek, one that offers just the right amount of nuances from the iconic franchise— the ’60s series, 10 films and four other weekly shows throughout the decades—and more than enough fast-paced techo panache to keep you invested in the story.

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Mercury Enters Libra

It’s the week of Burning Man, the temporary, intentional, alternative, art-filled community on the playas of Nevada. Mercury, messenger of the Sun, enters Libra this week. Libra is the equalizer, a sign of balance and right human relations. Sometimes with Libra, we can be indecisive and confused while learning how to make balanced and right choices. Sometimes to keep the peace we communicate only what others want to hear. Eventually, we learn how to speak from the heart.

 

Final Cut

Cedar Street Video to close after 10 years at downtown location

 

Banter and Spark

Engaging actors, wry script distinguish lightweight rom-com ‘What If’

 

Back to Silicon Beach

With a new wave of startups, the future of Santa Cruz tech looks more promising than ever
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Himalayan Kitchen

Chef Purna Regmi on the secrets of Nepalese cooking

 

What’s the nicest thing you’ve done for someone this week?

Germany  |  Beekeeper

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

A Cab To Be Coveted

I first tasted Villa del Monte’s 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon at a Fourth of July party, where the hosts had bought a case of it because they love it and didn’t want to run out. It’s one of those wines that will grab you—in the best way—with its full body and rich fruit characteristics.