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Wednesday, March 28, 2001

Under-age and under cover

Posted By on Wed, Mar 28, 2001 at 12:00 AM

Robert Rodriguez (writer, director, editor, producer and all-around creative dynamo) uses a deceptively simple set-up as a jumping-off point in this clever, high-speed romp through a fantasyland jam-packed with exciting people, places and things too often missing in films for children.

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Rebels With a Cause

Posted By on Wed, Mar 28, 2001 at 12:00 AM

This documentary about the slow progress of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS, founded in 1961), from idealism to frustration and disillusionment, is a partisan, one-sided presentation. Still, it's a compelling story and should be seen, if only for the lessons it offers future disturbers of the status quo.

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Solas

Posted By on Wed, Mar 28, 2001 at 12:00 AM

Solas means "alone," and Spanish director Benito Zambrano's low-keyed, character-driven film is about loneliness and the difficulty people have in making basic connections. But it's also nudged along by unnecessary sentimentality.

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The Brothers

Posted By on Wed, Mar 28, 2001 at 12:00 AM

Refusing to Exhale could be the title of this film, according to director Gary Hardwick (Trippin’ ). But unlike the mahogany heroines of Waiting to Exhale, the bourgeois brothers ain’t even holding their breath for love. And though it touches on some deep issues, its characters and plot have many a thin patch.

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Heartbreakers

Posted By on Wed, Mar 28, 2001 at 12:00 AM

Director David Mirkin tries to spice up this lackluster film with a bouncy sound track and gorgeous locales, but any wit is drowned by the tag-team burlesque of Sigourney Weaver and Jennifer Love Hewitt. Ray Liotta and Jason Lee add a gust of warmth to a film which underestimates men and women both.

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Alberta Adams

Posted By on Wed, Mar 28, 2001 at 12:00 AM

She's been belting out the blues for almost 60 years now…and Alberta Adams shows no signs of slowin' down. She's got an earthy, world-weary voice which hints of a past filled with hound-dog men and hard-luck stories. Despite all that, her powerful yet ladylike stage presence lets you know...

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Egging himself on

Posted By on Wed, Mar 28, 2001 at 12:00 AM

So, it’s come to this: A wildly celebrated young author whose self-conscious, off-center style has won over both jaded critics and mush-minded memoir lovers is talking about keeping “a low profile” and “letting the work speak for itself.” A master of satire — and a leader of its media-skewering...

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Wednesday, March 21, 2001

2 Days Straight

Posted By on Wed, Mar 21, 2001 at 12:00 AM

You don't have to be from Nashville to sound like you are, but Detroit's 2 Days Straight recorded its latest album there and damn, does it ever sound like it. The Chrome Album drives home 11 shots of biting bourbon-soul and funk-blues rock. With a gruff 'n' gritty soul slinger on...

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Brute force

Posted By on Wed, Mar 21, 2001 at 12:00 AM

“The Bouncer” is like an upper-class struggle — the bourgeoisie representing graphical elegance and feudal miscreants playing out the plotline. Thus, the internal conflict arises: the beauty of the opulent can’t feasibly cooperate with the illiteracy of the many unfortunate street urchins; too many disputes arise. Undoubting, this is...

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One way out

Fantasies of the poor and hopeless in Scotland.

Posted By on Wed, Mar 21, 2001 at 12:00 AM

Director Lynne Ramsey's feature debut is one of those movies which manages to find poetry in grimy surroundings and stunted lives. Set in a Glasgow slum in the 1970s, the film carefully balances turgid reality with abstracted images and episodes of magic realism.

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