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Closed Circuit

It’s all in the timing. The British thriller Closed Circuit arrives in theaters at the perfect moment, for reasons both planned and accidental.

The Great Chicken Wing Hunt

I don’t think I’m going very far out on a limb when I say that this is the only movie you will ever see in which someone gets off a bus in downtown Buffalo and says to his companions, “We’re in Mecca!”

The Grandmaster

Sometimes it’s hard to shake the feeling that the American film distribution system works to prevent people from seeing movies that would interest them. Take The Grandmaster, which opened to rapturous reviews from major critics in the top markets last week and goes wide this week. It’s a martial arts film, but only in the sense that you would apply that genre to Hero, Crouching Tiger and Hidden Dragon, or House of Flying Daggers. Directed by the great Wong Kar Wai, it’s even more of an arthouse film than those audience favorites. Yet it’s being put into the multiplexes (and only one in our market, at that) with no promotion that I know of. Anyone who takes a chance on a ticket based on the title is likely to be disappointed by the film’s deliberate pacing and contemplative approach to action (not to mention—gasp—the subtitles), while the audience that would most appreciate it is likely to ignore it.

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