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Ram Dass: Fierce Grace

Ram Dass, the self-styled spiritual leader who wrote the best-selling Be Here Now (1971), suffered a stroke in February 1997, and in this modest, mildly involving portrait he sends his fellow aging boomers a heads-up that infirmity may be their next spiritual hurdle. The film documents the author’s speech therapy, acupuncture, and aquatic exercise sessions […]

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Dahmer

A low-key but hypnotic portrait of the infamous sex murderer and admitted cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer, who was convicted in 1992 of killing 16 men and was beaten to death two years later by a prison inmate. Inspired by Lionel Dahmer’s 1994 book A Father’s Story, writer-director David Jacobson has created a serial-killer film unlike any […]

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Let Me Hear Your Body Talk

Six upbeat films and videos about body image. Cindy McKeown’s One in Eight: Janice’s Journey chronicles a Boston woman’s battle against breast cancer; Jaime Scholnick’s Hello Kitty Gets a Mouth is a live-action goof in which the Japanese cartoon character seeks cosmetic surgery; and Mary Feidt’s The Goddess of Isla Mujeres shows a topless 303-pound […]

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Sour Mix

Seven shorts about growing up. In Michelle Oznowics’s conventionally styled drama Sour Mix a troubled girl at a new high school tries to deal with an overworked father and a mother in rehab; similar themes animate Erla Skuladottir’s Savior, Catherine LeCouteur’s Spin, and Miriam Kim’s Just Between You & Me. Far fresher is the brash […]

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Harvard Man

Writer-director James Toback, a Harvard man himself, follows up his indie success Black and White with a more ramshackle assemblage of the same materials: Ivy League basketball player, blond academic girlfriend, Italian-American mobsters, banter about African-American stereotypes, J.S. Bach on the sound track, and frequent threesomes. A Harvard philosophy major and point guard (Adrian Grenier) […]

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Crying & Wanking

This international program of ten shorts about longing and libido takes its name from Alys Hawkins’s inventive UK animation, an elliptical, erotic message to a lover. In Un Amor Sin la Vida Nepalese director Subina Shresta pines for her tangoing ex in Buenos Aires, voicing lines like “I loathe my own melancholia” over a hypnotic […]