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Everything Must Go

Those people who have been wondering what a real showcase for Will Ferrell’s acting would be like—surely a very small cohort of the general population—need wonder no longer. First-time feature director Dan Rush has provided the comic actor one in Everything Must Go, even if that wasn’t his intention when he undertook the project.

In a Better World

The Danish director Suzanne Bier has something of a penchant for moral extremity. In her last film, Brothers, an upright Danish army officer in Afghanistan is forced to commit an unspeakably horrible act in order to survive, and in his unhinged, guilt-burdened state is shipped home to his unsuspecting family.


If there was a movie I was rooting for to succeed this year, it’s this comedy that, from the advance publicity, set out to be a female answer to the kind of male-bonding comedies Judd Apatow has been making for the past decade. And you can’t beat the premise: the comic travails of a group of women preparing to be bridesmaids at a friend’s wedding.

Winter in Wartime

Filmmaker Martin Koolhoven’s Winter in Wartime is adapted from a reportedly popular 1970s Dutch young people’s novel, a Second World War coming-of-age story. Transferred to the screen by Koolhoven with what may well be a high degree of fidelity, it seems a film import without much of a potential audience in this country. Twelve-year-old Michiel (a very effective amateur, Martijan Lakemeir) is the son of a mayor in a German-occupied town during the war who finds himself a lonely resistance fighter when an English pilot is shot down in the nearby countryside. Michiel secretly and accidentally becomes the pilot’s only contact and protector. Meanwhile, the boy has doubts about his father’s seemingly too-friendly relations with the Germans.


A decade ago, Francois Ozon had an arthouse hit with 8 Women, a subversive and very funny adaptation of a play originally produced as an Agatha Christie-esque melodrama. He is apparently up to something similar with Potiche, adapted from a popular French play of the late 1970s. But it’s from a less universal genre, and I suspect that many American viewers will share my inability to figure out just what Ozon is trying to do here.

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