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Nicolas Cage

‘Kick-Ass’ Joins the Superhero Elite

Why, among the millions of children and adults who grew up idolizing superheroes, has nobody ever tried to become one? That’s the question troubling Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson), a nerdy teenager determined to take a bite out of crime in the Big Apple.

Dave doesn’t seem suicidal, though his mission certainly does. Armed only with a green-and-yellow jumpsuit and a modicum of protective gear – intimidating he isn’t – he sets out to live the fantasy and gets a knife in his gut for his troubles. But thanks to a viral video, captured via cell phone and rebroadcast, YouTube-style, to a world of tickled witnesses, his alter ego, Kick-Ass, is an instant Web sensation.

Take that, Spider-Man.

Indie Theater Roundup: 7 Movies to See This Week

When Martin Scorsese's Shutter Island had its long-awaited October 2009 release unceremoniously delayed by Paramount, it was only natural to assume the legendary director's new thriller, starring favorite son Leonardo DiCaprio, might have missed its mark. Hardly. (The studio blamed the decision on the economy and DiCaprio's lack of availability to the foreign press.) It opens today at the Sundance Kabuki for what should be a long, well-attended run, befitting one of the most cleverly confounding thrillers in recent memory.

Indie Theater Roundup: 7 Movies to See This Week

With the Dec. 31 deadline for 2009 Academy Award consideration fast approaching and at least one surefire Best Picture contender – Jason Reitman's Up in the Air – arriving at theaters this weekend, it's a perfect time to catch a movie. As always, here's a list of the finest films now playing at your local indie theaters.

Indie Theater Roundup: 7 Movies to See This Week

Once you're finished scouring the city for the season's best Black Friday bargains, settle into a darkened theater to catch this year's Oscar hopefuls, including Fantastic Mr. Fox, which should give Pixar's Up fierce competition for Best Animated Feature. To help you on your way, here's a list of the finest films now playing at your local indie theaters.

Werner Herzog Soldiers on with 'Bad Lieutenant' and 'My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done'

At 67, Werner Herzog shows no sign of slowing down. If anything, the famously feisty German auteur, an Oscar nominee for Encounters at the End of the World, his 2008 documentary about Antarctica’s rarely seen landscape, is doing his best impression of a workaholic.

Indie Theater Roundup: 7 Movies to See This Week

For those seeking alternatives to this weekend's surefire blockbuster – the teenage romance New Moon – there are plenty of worthy options now playing at the Bay Area's indie theaters. Among them:

Nicolas Cage Cuts Loose, to Greatly Satisfying Effect, in 'Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans'

Let’s get one thing straight: Werner Herzog’s Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans is not a remake of Abel Ferrara’s Bad Lieutenant, the grittier 1992 drama starring Harvey Keitel as a corrupt cop suffering a crisis of conscience, nor is it a sequel. Like Keitel, Nicolas Cage plays a drug-addicted lawman on a mission to self-destruct – his personal life is a disaster and his bosses are sick of his indiscretions. But Port of Call New Orleans is a far cry from Ferrara’s harrowing horror show.

Toronto in Review: The Latest from Werner Herzog, Pedro Almodóvar and the Coen Brothers

Thanks to Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds, the vicious political satire In the Loop and provocative documentaries like The Cove and Food, Inc., it's already been a terrific year for dedicated moviegoers. Based on the impressively strong selection of films on display at the 34th annual Toronto Film Festival, which drew to a close Sept. 19, there's plenty to look forward to in the months to come.

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