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The Second Mother

A domestic comedy-drama that starts off from a fairly pat premise but builds strength over the course of its careful, empathetic, and crafty unpeeling of…

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Z for Zachariah

Chiwetel Eijiofor, Margot Robbie and Chris Pine star in this low-key post-apocalyptic drama about a Garden of Eden that's not big enough for three people.

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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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Chicago Heights

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Returns Dec. 10-16 to the Siskel Center.

Sherwood Anderson's Winesburg, Ohio, is sometimes named as a great work of fiction that cannot be filmed. Daniel Nearing demonstrates in "Chicago Heights" that's not necessarily true. The book is a collection of 22 short stories connected by the character George Willard, who comes of age there and reflects on the citizens he has grown to know. Perhaps one could make 22 short films. Nearing finds an approach that in 90 minutes accomplishes the uncanny feat of distilling the book's essence.

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