Blog: Flick Picks

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Staff Picks 2/26/13: The Master, Breaking Dawn Part II, Oscar Winners

New This Week!

ENTERTAINMENT: One of the more challenging of last year's major releases - The Master - arrives this week. The Master tells the story of a veteran (Joaquin Phoenix) who becomes involved with a charismatic religious leader (Philip Seymour Hoffman). Amy Adams also stars and the film was directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, the director of Magnolia and There Will Be Blood. We have it on DVD and Blu-ray. Also, we can finally discover whether Bella and Edward live happily ever after in The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2, also available in both DVD and Blu-ray. For something a little quieter, Gael Garcia Bernal stars in The Loneliest Planet, about an engaged couple whose backpacking trip through Georgia (the country, not the state) makes them examine their relationship to each other and the world.

DOCUMENTARIES: A diagnosis of AIDS used to mean an automatic death sentence. The Oscar-nominated How to Survive a Plague tells the story of activists who were able to encourage pharmaceutical companies to quickly move new drugs from research to testing in order lessen the deadly threat of AIDS.

SUBTITLED: The makers of the animated Persepolis bring us Chicken With Plums, a whimsical story of a man waiting for death in pre-revolutionary Tehran. In the intimate Madrid 1987 a male journalist and a female journalism student end up locked in a bathroom with no clothes on. Their wide-ranging conversation over the next 24 hours is both personal and political. A Simple Life tells the story of a family's servant in Hong Kong who has a stroke, after which the family becomes the caretaker. The beautifully filmed Silent Souls takes you to West-Central Russia, where a man decides to dispose of his wife's remains according to his ancestors' traditions. Finally, the 1958 epic French version of Les Miserables is generally considered one of the best versions committed to film, staying adapted to the original novel.

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Flick Picks 2/19/13: Argo, Anna Karenina and Game of Thrones

New This Week!

ENTERTAINMENT: Despite not being nominated for a Best Director award at the Oscars, Ben Affleck has been riding high this awards season, pulling in Best Director awards at the BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) Awards and Golden Globes for Argo. Argo has been nominated for 7 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, so if you haven't seen it yet your chance has arrived this week! Argo is based on the true story of Tony Mendez (Affleck), a CIA operative who plans a rescue of Iranian hostages by creating a fictional Hollywood film. We've got it on DVD and Blu-ray.

Also out this week, Keira Knightley teams up with director Joe Wright for the third time (following Pride and Prejudice and Atonement) to bring us a new adaptation of Anna Karenina. Jude Law is also on board and the script was written by Tom Stoppard. Finally, Ethan Hawke continues his recent trend of interesting little movies with the scarefest Sinister, about an author who moves his family into a haunted house. It's from the producer of the Paranormal Activity films and is that rarity of a well-reviewed horror film.

SERIES: The last season of Game of Thrones left us with many unanswered questions so it's a good thing that season two is finally here. If you haven't caught this thrilling fantasy series yet you should take out season one to see what the buzz is all about.

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Flick Picks 2/12/13: Skyfall, Robot and Frank, Weeds and Nurse Jackie

New This Week!

ENTERTAINMENT: Daniel Craig takes a third shot at Bond...James Bond in Skyfall, the highest grossing Bond film in the franchise's 50 year history. Someone is outing MI6 agents and Bond must work with M (Judi Dench) to quash this threat. Ralph Fiennes and Javier Bardem also star in what has been one of the best-reviewed Bond films of all time. We've got it on DVD and Blu-ray.

Also available this week is the charmer Robot and Frank, with Frank Langella as an ex-con who sees an opportunity to put to use the robot that's been assigned to assist him in order pull off one last heist. The Sessions is the well-reviewed drama starring Helen Hunt as the sex therapist hired to provide a paralyzed man (John Hawkes) with a level of physical intimacy that he has never experienced. Finally, The Perks of Being a Wallflower allows Emma Watson to break away from Harry Potter into a contemporary role. This film, based on a popular young adult novel, follows a group of three outsider kids who try to adjust to high school.

SERIES: We've got the final season of Showtime's marijuana comedy-drama Weeds as well as season 4 of the popular Nurse Jackie.

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Flick Picks 2/5/13: Flight, Alex Cross, Here Comes the Boom

New This Week

ENTERTAINMENT: One of the best reviewed dramas of the year - Flight - arrives this week. It stars Denzel Washington in the story of a pilot who lands a plane after a mid-air catastrophe but subsequently has to deal with the substance abuse issues that threaten to overshadow his heroic status. It also stars John Goodman and Don Cheadle and was nominated for two Oscars including Best Actor for Washington. We've got it on DVD and Blu-ray.

Also this week, Tyler Perry stashes the dress and stretches his acting chops as the title character in Alex Cross, the latest attempt to bring James Patterson's well-known character to the screen. He chases serial killer Matthew Fox in this creepy thriller. More family friendly is Here Comes the Boom, in which Kevin James attempts mixed martial arts fighting and hilarity ensues. The charming indie relationship drama Celeste and Jesse Forever stars Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg as married high school sweethearts who pursue the idea of divorcing in order to remain friends.

SERIES: Season two of the British police series Above Suspicion comes out this week, as do seasons 3 and 4 of the LA cop series Southland.

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