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“GRANDMA” Take the well-traveled but reliable road trip formula, place Lily Tomlin behind the wheel of a vintage Dodge, put Paul Weitz in the director’s chair and charge him with helping his own screenplay. That’s reason enough for us to place this comedy-drama at the top of our sight unseen, must-see list. Tomlin — who excels […]

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BY SCOTT STIFFLER  |  A satisfying mix of documentary-style interviews, contemporary scenes, childhood flashbacks and music by local artists, this St. Louis-set film is as sharp and compelling as its two-color palette. Writer, producer, editor and director Michael J. Larnell juggles a multitude of obligations with far more success than his onscreen alter egos…or so […]

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BY SEAN EGAN  |  While not everyone can claim intimate familiarity with the early work of National Lampoon, the highly influential magazine’s distinctive brand of humor and ideology is certainly still felt today. The Lampoon and its alumnus successfully reached their tendrils into almost every medium of entertainment, making the publication ground zero for modern […]

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BY STEPHANIE BUHMANN  |  In March of 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a new, alarming statistic. In the United States, one in every 68 children is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. That is nearly twice as many as reported in 2000. Current studies question whether autism is an unfortunate bi-product […]

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BY SEAN EGAN |  Mike Nelson and Tommy Wiseau are men intimately familiar with devoted cult followings — the former for aiming his wry comedic voice at cinematic detritus, and the latter for being the multi-hyphenate behind one of the most notorious “bad movies” of all time. On April 17, their sensibilities will collide at […]

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BY DUSICA SUE MALESEVIC  |  While Hollywood continues its trend toward a dearth of female directors, the Tribeca Film Festival has bucked it — featuring work from 30 women, in a lineup unspooling April 15–26. Cara Cusumano, senior programmer, said that the festival has always been supportive of female directors and noted that it was […]

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BY DUSICA SUE MALESEVIC  |  New Mexico, the late ’70s: Cheryl King is having problems with her live-in boyfriend — he wants her out of the apartment. King knows she needs a job, but waiting tables is unappealing. She passes a topless club with a sign reading “Dancers Wanted.” Okay, she thinks, that might work. […]

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BY NORMAN BORDEN   |  “Kill City” is literally the inside story about a group of people — mostly teenagers and twentysomethings — who needed a place to live and created a community of “squats” on the Lower East Side. When photographer and School of Visual Arts student Ash Thayer found herself on the verge […]

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BY SCOTT STIFFLER   |  HARD SPARKS:  “R & J & Z”  Talk about love among the ruins. With the Black Death in full swing, a scrappy playwright by the name of William Shakespeare penned “Romeo and Juliet” — in which two kids from warring clans fall hard for each other then promptly drop dead. […]

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BY SCOTT STIFFLER  |  RUBIN MUSEUM OF ART: BRAINWAVE FESTIVAL  Good art makes you think, but great art changes the way you think. It happens all the time at the Rubin Museum of Art. Through April, their Brainwave Festival explores Buddhist notions of attachment and happiness. Pairing artists with scientists, the “Conversation” series includes “Bouquet […]

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