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AMERICAN HUSTLE—The 1970s ABSCAM sting operation is turned into a farce by director David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook). Starring Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, and Louis CK. Reviewed this issue. Flix, Maple Ridge, Regal Elmwood, Regal Niagara Falls, Regal Quaker, Regal Transit, Regal Walden Galleria

ANCHORMAN 2: THE LEGEND CONTINUES—Sequel. Starring Will Ferrell, Steve Carrell, Christina Applegate, Paul Rudd, Meagan Good, and David Koechner. Directed by Andy McKay (The Other Guys). Reviewed this issue. Aurora, Flix, Maple Ridge, Market Arcade, Regal Elmwood, Regal Niagara Falls, Regal Quaker, Regal Transit, Regal Walden Galleria

NEBRASKA—Bruce Dern was named Best Actor at the Cannes Film Festival for his performance as an elderly alcoholic convinced that he has won a million dollar sweepstakes in this new film by Alexander Payne (The Descendants). Co-starring Will Forte, June Squibb, Stacey Keach, and Bob Odenkirk. Reviewed this issue. Eastern Hills

SAVING MR. BANKS—From the Disney studio, a movie about Walt Disney’s efforts to persuade the author of Mary Poppins to allow her work to be turned into a movie. Starring Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson, and Colin Farrell. Directed by John Lee Hancock (The Alamo). Amherst, Flix, Regal Elmwood, Regal Niagara Falls, Regal Quaker, Regal Transit

WALKING WITH DINOSAURS—Animated children’s film. Directed by Barry Cook and Neil Nightingale. Flix, Maple Ridge, Regal Elmwood, Regal Niagara Falls, Regal Quaker, Regal Transit, Regal Walden Galleria



A CHRISTMAS STORY (1983)—Admit it: This is the Christmas movie you’ve seen more than any other, and the one you’re most likely to watch again. Humorist Jean Shepherd’s stories form this basis for this portrait of Christmas in a blue-collar Midwestern city in the 1930s. Starring Darren McGavin, Melinda Dillon, and Peter Billingsley. Directed by Bob Clark (Children Shouldn’t Play With Dead Things). Hamburg Palace (

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946)—Jimmy Stewart gets to see what life for his friends and community would have been like had he never lived in Frank Capra’s holiday classic. Co-starring Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Thomas Mitchell, Henry Travers, Beulah Bondi, Frank Faylen, Ward Bond, Gloria Grahame, H. B. Warner, Frank Albertson, Sheldon Leonard, and Charles Lane. Aurora, Hamburg Palace, Lockport Palace, Screening Room

LONG LIVE TOY—Documentary about the ongoing struggles of the Theater of Youth in its 40th season to serve the Buffalo community despite county funding cuts. This screening is free and open to the public, who will be invited to comment interactively on the film and the issues it raises. Sun Dec 29, 5pm. Market Arcade

MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (1944)—“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” debuted in this Judy Garland musical about a family preparing for the 1904 World’s Fair. With Margaret O’Brien, Mary Astor, Lucille Bremer, Leon Ames, Marjorie Main, and June Lockhart. Thu Dec 19 7pm. City Honors Auditorium, 186 E. North St. (

THE NUTCRACKER—As performed by the San Francisco Ballet. Screening Room

THE POLAR EXPRESS (2004)—Motion capture effects were still new wen Robert Zemeckis used them for this adaptation of the children’s Christmas book, and the result is more than a little creepy. There are moments of great visual beauty, but they’re so cold and intimidating that they wouldn’t be out of place in Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. Aurora, McKinley, Movieland

SCROOGE (1970)—Everyone’s favorite curmudgeon in a musical adaptation that owes as much to Oliver! as it does to the Charles Dickens story. Starring Albert Finney, Edith Evans, Kenneth More, and Alec Guinness. Directed by Ronald Neame (Raise the Titanic). Screening Room

THE SLEEPING BEAUTY—Live from the Bolshoi Ballet. Amherst

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