New in Theaters:
The Illusionist

An illusion itself as much as it is about a maker of illusions, Sylvain Chomet’s animated take on a never-filmed screenplay by Jacques Tati overflows with rainy-day beauty and mystery. The lack of any true dialogue only adds to its cloak-like myth-making; words would just ruin the poetry. Chomet’s film is also, of course, a beguilingly frustrating piece of work that can seem to hide and obfuscate more than is necessary. But at least the music is fantastic…
The Illusionist is playing now in limited release. You can read the full review at filmcritic.com.

In Theaters:
Somewhere

There have, of course, been fashion footage and photography that appear reasonable simulacra of art, and would-be films that are like little more than expensive ad campaigns. Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere floats uneasily between these worlds, neither wholly honest storytelling nor wholly empty spectacle…
Somewhere is playing now in limited release. You can read the full review at PopMatters.

In Theaters:
Rabbit Hole

Pretty isn’t always a bad thing in films about horrible events, but it can be a distraction, not to mention a cheap way to tidy up situations that are by definition untidy. John Cameron Mitchell’s adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama about grieving parents is a near-perfect example of what happens when decorousness gets in the way of raw, ripping emotions…
Rabbit Hole opens today in limited release. You can read the full review at PopMatters.

In Theaters:
Casino Jack

In the late George Hickenlooper’s last film, Casino Jack, a man flies closer and closer to a corrupting sun because he can’t see how anything he plans is not going to work out, until the glue holding his wings together starts to melt and the ground comes rushing at him faster than he thought possible…

Casino Jack opens today in limited release. You can read the full review at PopMatters.

In Books:
Program or Be Programmed

As one of the first writers to understand the paradigm-demolishing impact of the Internet (Cyberia), Douglas Rushkoff has long been lumped in with the web world’s cheerleaders. As this slim, cool-headed broadside makes clear, however, if Rushkoff was ever unambiguously thrilled about the online age, that time is past…

Program or Be Programmed is available throughout the known universe. You can read the full critique at Barnes & Noble Review.