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To hear Mike Judge and accommodating reporters tell it in pre-release publicity chat for Extract, his new film, his humor focuses on the social relations of the American workplace. His work, he’s told interviewers, looks at the life of working stiffs, in and out of their work sites. Judge was the creator of MTV’s 1990s animated series Beavis and Butthead, and at least one New York scribe has cited the fact that the two loutishly empty-headed teenaged title characters work at a fast-food joint as an example of Judge’s interests in this subject.

Cold Souls

Is being Paul Giamatti less enjoyable than being John Malkovich? Judging by Cold Souls the answer is yes. In fact, it’s something of a soul-shriveling experience. Giamatti plays himself—a trumped-up version—as Malkovich did in Spike Jonze’s Being John Malkovich, but there’s a lot less fun involved, particularly for the audience.

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