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Fox Searchlight Films

With the seemingly endless stream of state and national news stories, you might be looking for a break from it all. Luckily, there are plenty of options awaiting you at the local theater. From Hungarian wedding plans gone very awry to estranged sisters looking to bridge old divides, http://www.kcur.org/uptodateUp To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary Film Critics have a few recommendations for your next trip to the cinema.

Steve Walker

Roadside Attractions

With such a variety of themes and characters on display this month at area cinemas, there's no telling what you might see. From talking dogs to road-tripping senior citizens, Up To Date's indie, foreign, and documentary Film Critics caught us up on what's showing now, including "Finding Your Feet," "Beirut," "1945," "The Leisure Seeker," "Isle of Dogs," and "Leaning Into the Wind."

Fox Searchlight Films

It's a good time of year for lovers of independent movies. Local cinemas are offering a bevy of intriguing plots, including a much-anticipated release from the symmetrically-inclined mind of Wes Anderson that features dogs you can comprehend and humans you can't (unless you understand Japanese). If stop-motion's not the fare for you, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary Film Critics have plenty more to recommend.

Steve Walker

"Finding Your Feet," PG-13

Segment 1: A new art exhibit encourages people to write down their wishes.

A group of local artists has created a public altar at the Kansas City Public Library, where visitors are invited to write down their wishes and leave objects of personal significance. One of the artists behind this project shares his vision for it.

Menemsha Films

This time of the month comes with so many opportunities for entertainment that it's hard to pick just one. There's First Fridays, the Kansas City Ballet's Celebration of Dance, a footrace from Kansas City to Lawrence, even mixed martial arts and tribute-band blowout.

Segment 1: A Screentime show on Love, Simon.

Love, Simon is the first big-budget romantic comedy for teens where the central love story is between two boys. We hear what the movie means to Kansas Citians.

Segment 2, beginning at 36:43: A new coloring book features women from KC history.

Maj Lindström / Music Box Films

Early on in the documentary “Chavela,” a cabaret owner describes the voice of Chavela Vargas: “She wasn’t a little fountain. She was more like a tremendous canyon.… She sounded as if she’d been born with the wounds of life and death.”

Vargas was born in Costa Rica and moved to Mexico at 17 to pursue music. At first, she presented herself as a traditional, feminine cabaret and ranchera singer, but found the style unnatural and uncomfortable.

Updated May 8 at 8:30 a.m. with new recommendations —

Some degrees slated to be dropped at the University of Missouri-St. Louis appear to have been saved.

UMSL administrators released final recommendations Monday on a restructuring effort designed to save the public institution money. The entire University of Missouri System is going through a similar process at the direction of President Mun Choi.

Thomas Reidelsheimer / Magnolia Pictures

With sunshine showing up Friday and possible snow appearing on Sunday, it feels like spring is teasing us. Throw in April Fool's Day at the end of the weekend and it may feel like everyone and everything is out to trick you. There is something you can trust, though, and that's Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary Film Critics' weekend flick picks. 

Steve Walker

"Loveless," R

Oscillioscope

With March coming to a close, Up To Date's Film Critics returned to get us caught up on the flicks showing around town. But first, we met the writer and director of "Into the Night: Portraits of Life and Death," which chronicles how nine individuals, including a Prairie Village surgeon, reconcile themselves with their own mortality.

Sony Pictures Classics

If you're not one of the college basketball fans focused on NCAA tournament games this weekend, take to your local theater for moving pictures with equal drama but fewer sweaty athletes. Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary Film Critics have plenty to recommend, including stories of a love lost too soon, potty-mouth party leaders and the most beautiful woman in the world.

Bob Butler

"A Fantastic Woman," R

Diaphana Films

Trying to avoid a certain green-saturated, Irish-themed event parading through midtown Kansas City this weekend? You're in luck! This weekend's movie recommendations from Up To Date's Film Critics will lead you to the dark haven of a local movie theater.

Cynthia Haines

"Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story," Not rated

Zeitgeist Films

As spring inches closer and the weather warms up, it's time to escape from under the blankets and venture into the world outside. After all, there are only so many films to stream for free from your couch. Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary Film Critics share their three must-see movies to get out and watch this weekend.

Steve Walker

"A Fantastic Woman," R

Bleeker Street Media

With the Oscars on Sunday, this weekend is your last chance to catch some of this year's nominees before winners are announced. If you've already seen them all and want something new to view, Up To Date's independent, foreign and documentary Film Critics have that covered, too, in this week's recommendations.

Steve Walker

"Nostalgia," R

Scott Stacy

It’s taken a long time for people to be able watch the documentary Kansas City filmmaker Kevin McKinney released in 2012. But he’s at peace with that.

After all, the problems he explored in "Corporate FM" – the corporatization and consolidation of local commercial radio – still exist. And he’s OK with the fact that audiences can watch it now because it’s streaming through Amazon Prime.

Melissa Hillier / Flickr - CC

The Oscars are just over a week away, and your attention span may be a little brief after all the hype. Fortunately, Up To Date's Film Critics have short films at the top of their lists of movies not to miss. Feel like staying in this weekend? TV Guide has put together a list of streaming options for this year's Academy Award nominees.

Cynthia Haines

2018 Oscar-nominated short films: Animated

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