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Mr. Turner

Filmmaker Mike Leigh's biography of the landscape painter J.M.W. Turner is what critics call "austere"—which means it's slow and grim and deliberately hard to love—yet…

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Annie

The new version of "Annie" is fashionably artificial and not very well directed, but its unabashed good cheer is very welcome.

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Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

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Monsieur Hire

Patrice Leconte's "Monsieur Hire" is a tragedy about loneliness and erotomania, told about two solitary people who have nothing else in common. It involves a…

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Up on the rooftop, all hell broke loose

From Patrick McGee:

Roger, just read your "Tooth Fairy" review. I thought you'd appreciate this little story.

We have 5 kids (a couple still in the “believe” age group). We've never really pushed the idea of the Tooth Fairy….just went-along with it like we assumed the kids did. I did come up with a novel story that horrifies the little believers and really cracks-up the older kids. I used the plot of the movie Underworld to create a story about the blood feud between Santa (elves) and the Tooth Fairy (fairies).

Santa had a son who fell in love with the Tooth Fairy's daughter. Because Santa could not abide such a mixing of the species, he had the Fairy's daughter killed. The Tooth Fairy responded by killing Santa's son. So began the blood-feud. Elves and Fairies have fought and died by the thousands over the ages. But, most critical, is what happens on Xmas Eve. Should a child be unable to prevent the loss of a tooth on Xmas Eve, it's possible that the Tooth Fairy and Santa end up at that very house at the same time. When this happens, the resulting battle destroys several city blocks.

Yes, it's twisted…..especially for 4 year-olds. But that's what makes it fun. My kids absolutely love it, especially all older kids. The next time you're at a Xmas party, use this little story with a friend/family's child. Just watch, every kid you tell it to will instantly start nervously checking for any loose teeth. Priceless.

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