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Comic, Zany but Unsettling, Too

Movies: ‘Mistress America’

Noah Baumbach has changed, at least a little. The man who made the acidic but insightful “The Squid and the Whale,” who gave us “Greenberg,” a character so unlikable that we almost wanted him to fail, now gives us what, for him, passes as comedy. And to be sure, there is a mindless, zany streak running through his newest film, “Mistress America.” But there is also a palpable anxiety.

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Good Idea, Entertaining Flick

Movies: ‘The Man From U.N.C.L.E’

ne way to get a 1960s vibe from a remake of a 1960s TV program is to set it in 1963. That is what Guy Ritchie and company have done with “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.,” which has the right clothes and hairdos and soundtrack and cars and Cold War stuff.

Well, almost the right clothes. Illya Kuryakin, the Soviet agent (played with excellent deadpan humor by Armie Hammer) passes muster with items from the Large KGB Agent clothing line popular at the time, and the supporting cast looks present and correct.

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The Pleasure Is In The Dueling

Movie: ‘The End of the Tour’

The book “Infinite Jest” is more talked about and admired than read, and, alas, so is its author, David Foster Wallace. Wallace was a wonderfully perceptive writer with a head full of information and ideas and concerns, all bursting out and landing on the pages of his most famous book. 

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Absurd, Clichéd, Highly Diverting

Movies: ‘Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation’

Here we go again with Ethan Hunt, played by Tom Cruise, and the various impossible missions he (and only he) can complete.

In Christopher McQuarrie’s “Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation” we get the usual features — electronic devices that always work, guns that never run out of bullets and so on.

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Streep’s Terrific, but the Rest . . .

Movies: ‘Ricki and the Flash’

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All the Sadness Preserved

Movies: ‘Amy’

Asif Kapadia’s “Amy,” about British pop singer Amy Winehouse, who died in 2011 of alcohol poisoning, illustrates one thing about the digital age — primary source material, in the form of home and camera videos, will be everywhere, should someone decide to make a documentary.

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A Teen and Her Mom Go to the Movies

Movies: ‘Trainwreck’

I went to see the new Amy Schumer film, “Trainwreck,” with my 16- year-old daughter Abbey, and then we discussed the film via Facebook instant message. This is a lightly edited transcript of our chat.
Jenny: In “Trainwreck,” comedian Amy Schumer plays “Amy,” a writer for a lad magazine who has taken to heart the lesson her dad taught her as a child: “monogamy is unrealistic.” 

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A Great Ian McKellen as a Real Sherlock Holmes

Movies: ‘Mr. Holmes’

This is a small film with a huge star presence: Ian McKellen. Throwing off Gandalf’s wizard robes from “Lord of the Rings” and not controlling magnetism in “X-Men,” McKellen, in “Mr. Holmes” simply acts magnificently in an oddly muddled and fuzzy film.

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Parrott Pub moves from Winsted to New Hartford

NEW HARTFORD —  After several years in business at the Ledgebrook Plaza in Winsted, the Swingin’ Parrott Pub has relocated to the Hurley Business Park in New Hartford under a new name: The Parrott Delaney Tavern.
Hurley Business Park, just removed from the center of New Hartford, is an old mill revamped to house artist studios and other businesses. The wooden floors, brick walls and high wooden-beamed ceilings maintain the airy, rustic feel of the mill building.

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Who Is This Movie For, Anyway?

Movies: ‘Minions’

This is a movie that breaks new ground, in the sense that I have never seen anything quite like a little yellow critter, wearing overalls and goggles, sing “Auld Lang Syne,” in pidgin Esperanto, to a rat.
   Kyle Balda and Pierre Coffin directed “Minions,” a thoroughly bizarre animated feature, and 20 years ago I would have wanted some of whatever they are smoking.

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