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  • Issue of
  • Jul 13-19, 2005
  • Vol. 25, No. 39

News & Views

Arts & Culture

  • The Scene
  • Undead

    War of the Worlds isn’t the only alien invasion flick in theaters right now. This scruffy sci-fi-horror-comedy hybrid made in 2003 hails from Australia, stealing ideas from the best: Steven Spielberg, Sam Raimi, Peter Jackson. Although it was made for a fraction of what was spent on Tom Cruise’s wardrobe alone, Undead boasts an impressive array of gruesome digital effects, acrobatic stunt work and old-fashioned directorial ingenuity. If its creators were handed a decent script and some better actors, they might actually be on to something.
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  • The Scene
  • March of the Penguins

    In a summer filled with feel-good documentaries, leave it to a group of penguins to steal the show. Luc Jacquet’s documentary follows the annual journey of emperor penguins as they march 70 miles through the unforgiving Antarctic terrain to a remote location to mate. French auteur-writer Jacquet puts a romantic spin on the journey, narrated by Morgan Freeman. The love story may be tenuous, but the penguins are undeniably cute and engaging. Whatever the case, anthropomorphism never looked so beautiful.
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  • The Scene
  • Fantastic Four

    The latest Marvel comic book to go through the Hollywood meat grinder, this adaptation is short on action and long on pointless superhero bickering. Fantastic Four borrows heavily from the Spider-Man and X-Men movies, but still fails to create a group of sympathetic heroes, or even an effectively evil nemesis.
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  • The Scene
  • A League of Ordinary Gentlemen

    This documentary about professional bowling follows the 2003 season, including the finals held in metro Detroit’s own Taylor Lanes. Pro bowlers, never having been the world’s sexiest athletes, now try to court the 18- to 35-year-old male demographic, hyping up the sport and playing up lane-side antics like Pete Weber’s signature two-handed "crotch chop" gesture. And yet, one is still painfully aware that it’s just not that interesting to watch people bowl. The best material comes from the personal lives of the bowling vets, who, despite their massive collections of championship trophies, still come off as real people trying to make a living doing what they love.
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  • The Scene
  • Dark Water

    Jennifer Connelly gives an impressive performance as an emotionally shattered mother fighting to retain custody of her daughter after a nasty divorce. Forced to move into a sinister tenement, she struggles to make ends meet while contending with her daughter’s sudden preoccupation with a malicious imaginary friend and a strange, relentless leak from the abandoned apartment above. As a horror film, Dark Water is too predictable to deliver any surprising shocks or scares. As a psychological thriller, however, it stands out with its convincingly complex characters and director Walter Salles’ impeccably creepy sense of craft and taste.
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Food & Drink

  • Table and Bar
  • Chef knows best

    With most entrees priced at less than $20, including a choice of soup or a lovely house salad garnished with dried cherries and pine nuts, the menu includes both old favorites, as well as some very unusual dishes, all presented with a sophisticated flair.
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Music

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