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    Movie Times | Movie Reviews | Theater Reviews
'Phantom Thread': When Love Is In Fashion
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
02:51PM / Thursday, January 25, 2018
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Though perhaps deluded, I'd like to think I put as much effort into an essay as Daniel Day-Lewis' Reynolds Woodcock devotes to making a dress in Paul Thomas Anderson's "Phantom Thread."    This is the sort of person you want doing your heart operation, piloting the airplane you're on, or teaching your kid. He's the real deal, and suffers for it, too. The maladies of obsessive genius are many. But the inherent reward is matchless, with the added benefit, aside from financial remuneration, of almost having a right to the arrogance you exude, if so inclined.   Welcome to Mr. Woodcock's world, a special place of understated elegance based in a

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'The Post': The Stuff of Pulitzers
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
03:12PM / Thursday, January 18, 2018
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When we look back at this currently shameful nadir in American history, we will have heartening movies like Steven Spielberg's "The Post," about how the title newspaper fought a disingenuous U.S. government, to remind us of our successful defense of the 1st Amendment. It is a testament to the uses of history.    Although the film is an exciting, often heart-pounding chronicle of the Nixon-era Pentagon Papers scandal, we know full well that, just as the Korea-based "MASH" (1970) was about Vietnam, this past triumph is also crucial to the here and now.   Once again we are heroically reminded that the Founding Fathers knew what they were doing. Although

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'Darkest Hour': Saving The World 101
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
07:14PM / Friday, January 12, 2018
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It is said that if you're hungry and motoring in a hurry, unable to stop due to time constraints, ubiquitous eateries will line the road. Likewise, an analogous case exists in times of sociopolitical crisis. Looking at our current situation in America, I see metaphors everywhere.   But in viewing Gary Oldman's tour de force portrayal of Winston Churchill in director Joe Wright's "Darkest Hour," it takes no great stretch of the imagination to draw comparisons. A threat to civilization is a threat to civilization.   The difference is that while the United Kingdom and eventually most of its allies, including the United States, faced an external menace back in

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'The Greatest Showman': For Ladies, Gentlemen & Parentally Guided Children of All Ages
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
04:08PM / Thursday, January 04, 2018
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Watching Michael Gracey's "The Greatest Showman," about the life and times of circus visionary P.T. Barnum, it occurred to me that the Trump debacle wasn't just about old white men afraid of losing their foothold. And it also wasn't just about white supremacists afraid of multiculturalism, or about trying to preserve dodo bird industries that would have no future place in our health, wealth and commonweal if we were to progress as a nation.    Nope, I fear it has to do with our basest instincts: a curiosity and approach-avoidance appetite for the macabre.   It is our national car accident, turned upside down on the side of the road, unheard screaming

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'The Shape of Water': No Ordinary Fish Tale
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
01:41PM / Thursday, December 28, 2017
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If you think the book was closed long ago on fairy tales, that they've all been written and read, and that the genre is further rendered obsolete by the brutal, anti-intellectual sentiment now rearing its ugly head in America, then you need to see "The Shape of Water."    Director Guillermo del Toro's beautifully conceived, written and acted fantasy, at once cynical, imaginative and wistfully altruistic, enchantingly draws us into its dissection of our existence, telling its classical good vs. evil tale with a reverence for the truth we humans require in order to flourish.   Del Toro touts the inherent worth and sanctity of the individual in the unlikely

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E-Book Review: 'Symphonies & Scorpions' by Gerald Elias
By Stephen Dankner, Special to iBerkshires
02:24PM / Wednesday, December 27, 2017
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Musician/author Gerald Elias is widely known by Berkshires classical music aficionados for living a double artistic life as a violinist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, performing at the BSO's Tanglewood Music Festival each summer, and also being the gifted author of six classical music-themed mystery "whodunits": "Devil’s Trill," "Danse Macabre," "Playing With Fire," "Death and the Maiden," "Death and Transfiguration" and "Spring Break."

Now, Elias has just released his first downloadable e-book, "Symphonies & Scorpions." A memoir, he has subtitled it "Ramblings of a Wand'ring

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'Wonder Wheel': Round and Round It Goes
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
12:17PM / Friday, December 22, 2017
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Woody Allen flummoxes us. I think it was Henry Miller who asked to be judged by his literary work and not his personal life. "Fat chance" said some; "OK" said others; and "Who's Henry Miller?" was doubtlessly the response by most.   While Allen makes no such plea, aloud or tacitly, the arrival of each new movie from this film genius is always a sticky wicket. We are put at odds by alleged misbehavior, objectionable proclivities and charges of sexual harassment never quite resolved in the cauldron of public opinion.   Thus, with the opening of "Wonder Wheel," sometimes dramatically brilliant, cleverly derivative in its homage to a gaggle

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'The Disaster Artist': No Soap, Radio
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
04:25PM / Friday, December 15, 2017
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Director James Franco's "The Disaster Artist" reminded me of a non-joke that popularly circulated when I was a kid. It goes like this: Two elephants are in a bathtub and, when one says to the other, "Pass the soap," the other elephant informs, "No soap, radio."   You tell it and then you laugh, intentionally flummoxing your little friend who, afraid he'll look stupid if he doesn't laugh, chortles despite wondering why it's funny. Several decades since, I question, just a little, if the joke was actually on the jester ... that somewhere there was humor in the put-on.   Such, more or less, is the territory into which "The Disaster

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Children's Musical Set For Dec. 2-3 in Williamstown
11:47AM / Friday, December 01, 2017
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Community Bible Church will present its annual children’s Christmas musical at 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 2 and 3.

This year’s production is titled “Angels Aware” and tells the story of what came before the night Christ was born - way before. Gabriel calls a meeting to announce God's plan to send his son to Earth. The angels are shocked to learn that Jesus will be sent to Earth as a baby.

“Angels Aware” features two dozen local children ranging in age from 4 to 14 singing, dancing and acting in a Broadway-style musical. It is directed by Connie Sheehy, with musical direction by Trish Clairmont and costumes by

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'Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri': Signs of the Times
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires film critic
03:12PM / Thursday, November 30, 2017
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Director Martin McDonagh's compelling "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" features, among other things, misogyny, police brutality, racism, rape, child molestation, white supremacy, unrestricted gun possession, and anti-gay sentiments.    But no, it's not about Roy Moore's quest to represent Alabama in the U.S. Senate. Rather, equally provocative and similarly chilling, the superbly acted film details a mother's rage over her daughter's unsolved murder to the backdrop of a small town rendered dysfunctional by the above-listed disgraces.   Frances McDormand, playing Mildred Hayes, the infuriated mom, is the beleaguered face of survival in

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