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    Movie Times | Movie Reviews | Theater Reviews
'Jack Reacher: Never Go Back': Doesn't Quite Grab You
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
01:35PM / Friday, October 28, 2016
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It is what it is.

I contemplated saving approximately 805 words by simply having the above overworked phrase stand as my review of director Edward Zwick's "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back." However, despite its relatively appropriate description of this action-thriller starring Tom Cruise as the title maverick, fear of a random audit by the American Film Critics Oversight Committee induced me to proceed with the usual study in tortured prose that follows.

In this second film based on the character developed by novelist Lee Child, the ex-military police major-turned-vigilante once again fights for truth, justice and the American way — in his very own way. Expect the usual

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12th Annual FODfest Set for Saturday
10:34AM / Monday, October 24, 2016
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SHEFFIELD, Mass. — Sheffield-based nonprofit Music in Common will present its flagship concert event, FODfest (Friends of Danny Festival), at Dewey Hall, located at 91 Main St., on Saturday, Oct. 29.

FODfest celebrates the life of Daniel Pearl — the slain Wall Street Journal reporter who began his career at the North Adams Transcript and The Berkshire Eagle. The concert will feature more than a dozen local musicians in a unique format that is part jam session, part song-swap and part concert.

The concert begins promptly at 7:30 p.m. and is free and open to all. Also included in the evening is a screening of the new documentary short about Music in Common, "From Madness

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'The Accountant': Adds Up Smartly
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
04:14PM / Friday, October 21, 2016
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"Why would I want to see Ben Affleck do taxes?"

Thus inquired a friend's wife when he asked if she'd like to see "The Accountant," director Gavin O'Connor's action-packed crime drama starring Affleck in the title role. To which I reply, "exactly." The snazzy, left-handed glorification of the iconically dull profession, often seen as a refuge for the creatively challenged, is here entertainingly perched on its ear and pumped for all of its anomalous surprise, shock and glee.

This is an often captivating, physical and mental road trip through some rather intricate loopholes that'll have you wondering if Humpty can ever be put together at

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New Berkshire Theatre Awards Program Names Winners
11:40AM / Friday, October 21, 2016
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. - The winners of the First Annual Berkshire Theatre Awards have been announced. Seventeen arts journalists voted on 120 nominees in 25 categories chosen from artists in the 75 live theatre productions mounted in Berkshire County and adjacent areas between October 1, 2015, and September 30, 2016.

The winner of the special Larry Murray Award, to be given to a person or theater project that advances social, political or community issues, will not be announced until the Winners’ Celebration at 5 p.m. on Nov. 13 at Mr. Finn’s Cabaret in Pittsfield. Nominees for the Larry Murray Award are Kristen van Ginhoven, co-founder and artistic director of WAM Theatre, and

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Norman Rockwell Museum Eyes Expansion
01:08PM / Monday, October 17, 2016
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STOCKBRIDGE, Mass. — Norman Rockwell Museum, the world's largest and most comprehensive repository of art and archival materials relating to Norman Rockwell's life and work, is assessing possibilities for expansion and has initiated feasibility studies to examine various options for meeting its pressing need for more space.

The need for expansion derives from numerous factors. Primary among these is the museum's broadened mission, which now includes the collection, study and exhibition of illustration art not only by Rockwell, but by the full range of American illustrators. Other areas of major growth include educational programming, scholarship and outreach to global

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'The Birth of a Nation': A Painful Truth
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
12:58PM / Thursday, October 13, 2016
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Watching writer-director Nate Parker's "The Birth of a Nation," a biography of the slave Nat Turner that concludes with the namesake rebellion he led in 1831, you can't help but anguish over the idea that only 155 years ago slavery was perfectly legal in the Southern United States. That kind of historical realization always gets me wondering what crazy practice do we abide today that our heirs will one day see as similarly primeval and egregious?

Perhaps it'll be the current health care crisis ... the fact that "once upon a time" nearly half the country wasn't certain if it wanted to ensure the less fortunate half's well-being through adequate

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'Queen of Katwe': Commanding Performance
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
02:28PM / Thursday, October 06, 2016
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You should see director Mira Nair's "Queen of Katwe," especially if you want to feel miserable, sad, perhaps a little guilty, frustrated and angry on the way to becoming a better person.

It's the true story of how Phiona Mutesi, a Ugandan girl, had her life changed after learning the game of chess. But that's just the movie's way to get us into Poorest Africa … to abash us with its divulgences of the Third World. Expect no really great surprises. What an absolute downer it would be if the impoverished Phiona had no talent to pull her from the muck and mire of squalor.

None of this is to say that folks with absolutely no social conscience won't find

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Mill Children Exhibit to Open This Weekend in Adams
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
07:19AM / Saturday, October 01, 2016
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ADAMS, Mass. — The "Mill Children" exhibit reopens this weekend at its new location in the Berkshire Mill.   Native William Kolis, who has been an advocate for arts, culture and economic development in Adams, said the exhibit, based on Lewis Hine's photographs of child mill workers in the early 20th century, finally has a home.   "We finally did it and it is a wonderful space," Kolis said. "It was difficult to get done but I have no qualms."   The exhibit was previously displayed in a space in the former Waverly Mill down the street but because of financial constraints and incoming tenants the exhibit had to be moved.   The

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'The Magnificent Seven': They Ride Again
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
01:48PM / Thursday, September 29, 2016
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Hombres and women folk hankerin' for a good old-fashioned horse opera with just a touch of newfangled sensibilities might want to mosey on over to a movie theater showing director Antoine Fuqua's remake of "The Magnificent Seven."

It's a rip-roaring homage to John Sturges' 1960 version, the one starring Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen, which, you'll recall, was actually a cowboy variation on Akira Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai" (1954). The gist of the morality play about emancipation from tyranny remains entertainingly intact.

Point of disclosure: In my case, seeing the movie with Hesh, my friend since childhood, arguably added about half a popcorn

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Norman Rockwell Museum Welcomes New Board of Trustees Members
04:58PM / Friday, September 23, 2016
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STOCKBRIDGE, Mass. — Norman Rockwell Museum welcomed new members to its Board of Trustees and National Council during the museum’s annual meeting held on September 16. 

Robert Babcock, Peter Blum, Terry Burman, Marian Raser, and David Schwartz were elected as new trustees, starting this fall. New members for the National Council are Elizabeth Bender and William Zavarello, Douglas Clark and Ruth Ann McNeese, and Tucker Reed.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome such a talented group of new board and National Council members to Norman Rockwell Museum,” said Board Chairman Robert T. Horvath. “Their diverse talents and networks will help us continue to reach

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