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Arts and Entertainment

New Movie Friday: Spies, Soldiers, Single Moms and Flaming Spirits

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Academy Award Nominated Short Films - A compendium of this year's live action and animation shorts.

Breach - Based on the true story of Robert Hanssen who spent 15 years spying for the Soviet Union, a breach that is one of the worst intelligence disasters in US history. Chris Cooper plays Hanssen and Ryan Philippe plays the newbie agent sent to keep on an eye on him in this cat-and-mouse drama.

The Boy Who Cried Bitch: The Adolescent Years - Indie drama about a mentally ill teenager (Adam LaVorgna) who clashes with his mother after being released from a mental hospital. I think it’s a sequel to the 1991 indie drama The Boy Who Cried Bitch; both were written by Catherine May Levin.

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Bridge to Terabithia - The Katherine Paterson novel of my youth about two pre-teen loners who forge a friendship and invent a mythical kingdom has been transformed into an effects-heavy family "adventure."

Café Setareh - Directed by Saman Moghadam, this Iranian film explores the challenges faced by three very different women: a young woman whose mechanic boyfriend cannot pay for a wedding, a married woman who supports her family with no help from her lazy husband and a middle-aged woman who falls for a much younger man.

Days of Glory - Algeria’s official entry for the Foreign Film Academy Award follows four North African men who enlist in the French army during WWII.

Eklavya (Yagna) - Vidhu Vinod Chopra directs this action drama starring Amitabh Bachchan as Eklavya an againg royal guard who lives only to protect the fort, the dynasty, and the king.

Ghost Rider - Another comic book adaptation from Marvel, this time starring Nicolas Cage as a stunt motorcyclist whose body literally turns into flames. Eva Mendes plays the love interest.

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Technically, these films came out on Tuesday (get it? Valentine's Day?), but I'm listing them in this week's new releases anyway.Daddy's Little Girls - Tyler Perry directs but doesn’t star in this romantic comedy about an upwardly mobile attorney (Gabrielle Union) who falls for a working class, single father of three (Idris Elba). Their unexpected romance is tested by her father (who wants her to marry wealthy) and his ex-wife (who might just want more than custody of her kids).

Music and Lyrics - Hugh Grant plays a has-been 1980s pop star in too-tight trousers and Drew Barrymore plays the offbeat but charming house-sitter who's drafted into helping him pen songs that will justify the film's thuddingly obvious title.