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Life & Times

December 21, 2012

IN THEATERS

(Continued)

CHASING MAVERICKS

1/2

This film is about surfing, the legendary and mysterious secret break, the Mavericks, off the coast of northern California, and teenage Jay Moriarty who became famous there. Jay (Jonny Weston) gets the surfing bug from his nextdoor neighbor, Frosty (Gerard Butler). Jay lionizes Frosty and stows away when Frosty sneaks off to Mavericks, of which only a quartet of veteran surfers are aware. Frosty mentors the kid, training him to survive and ride the break. It’s an entertaining story with awe-inspiring surf footage. PG (thematic elements and some perilous action).

CLOUD ATLAS

1/2

This adaptation of David Mitchell’s spinning top of a novel exists to vex, intrigue and discombobulate unsuspecting audiences six ways to Sunday. It defies description. Six storylines spanning several centuries, from an 1849 Pacific Ocean voyage to the year 2321, provide the narrative webbing. Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent, Hugo Weaving and others play many roles apiece. Some of the stories work, but others fall flat. It’s a fascinating look at some very large themes, but it’s a bewildering effort that doesn’t really work. R (violence, language, sexuality/nudity and some drug use).

DARK HORSE

Todd Solondz’ latest suburban chamber of horrors is a wonderfully realized and surprisingly understated dark satire, an odd — and, at times, oddly endearing — love story between rude, obese, unlikable Abe and narcissistic, depressive Miranda. 1 hr. 24 No MPAA rating (mature themes, profanity)

DIANA VREELAND: THE EYE HAS TO TRAVEL

1/2

The legendary fashion editor, society icon and cultural arbiter is celebrated in this illuminating doc. Interviews with Vreeland (conducted by George Plimpton), and with designers, photographers, models and stars, reveal a woman with preternatural instincts for recognizing talent and trends. Her philosophy was built on independent thinking and a belief in the transformative powers of beauty and art. 1 hr. 26 PG-13 (adult themes)

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