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Let Me In

Most anyone who has seen it will tell you that the Swedish Let the Right One In is one of the best vampire films ever made, up there with George Romero’s Martin and Kathryn Bigelow’s Near Dark. Of course, it hasn’t been seen all that widely in the US; Buffalo is only one of the cities where it never played during its theatrical run in October 2008.

Soul Kitchen

Cooking and mealtime have increasingly become important parts of our common discourse in recent years. They’ve acquired sociological medical, psychological, political, and ecological significance. They are often bound up in discussions of personal fulfillment and family dynamics.

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps

Picture this: The iconically infamous (if fictitious) Gordon Gekko takes his daughter and prospective son-in-law to Shun Lee, the upscale Manhattan Chinese restaurant, for a sort of reconciliatory meal. And, just after they’re seated and a waiter appears, Gordon offers to order the young man a Heineken. I’m sorry, but isolated from café society and the circles and corridors of influence of our sorely threatened republic as I am, I harbor nagging doubt that former and aspiring lords of finance like these two men order Heinekens (particularly at posh premises like these. And before the meal!). What’s with that? Product placement (like the use of the restaurant’s brand)? I dunno, but it’s a sore-thumb imposition, anyway.

Countdown to Zero

As I sit down to review this documentary about the probability (not possibility) of nuclear catastrophe, I am looking at a front page of the Buffalo Evening News dated July 20, 1956. The headline: “125,000 KNOWN DEAD, DOWNTOWN IN RUINS.” A photograph shows Buffalo’s City Hall collapsing in flames—as if any such photograph would have survived the two nuclear bombs that the “emergency edition” reports to have been dropped on the city and the northern suburbs. The fake newspaper was produced for Operation Alert, a nationwide Civil Defense training exercise that encouraged Americans to practice taking cover and evacuating urban areas in preparation for a nuclear attack. The program was ended in 1962 because of public protests led by pacifists and young mothers who felt the campaign was needlessly frightening and absolutely pointless.


“Don’t let anyone tell you what it is,” warn the posters. They’re referring not so much to the title, which eventually gets explained but isn’t terribly meaningful, as to the film itself. Catfish is one of those movies—there’s usually one every year or so—that is best seen completely cold, by viewers who don’t know anything about it.

The Social Network

There’s not doubt that this hotly anticipated movie by the team of writer Adam Sorkin (TV’s West Wing) and director David Fincher (Se7en, Fight Club) will rule the box office this weekend, and maybe next as well.

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