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Cinefiles

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Even the Rain (NR)

Image Entertainment

Rivaling the best works of Werner Herzog and Terrence Malick, Spanish director Iciar Bollain's Even the Rain is a masterpiece of bloody controversy, passion and humanity, mixing meta with metaphors and creating a fist-pumping blueprint for a revolution that, sadly, will mean very little to Americans. Filmmaker Sebastian (Gael García Bernal) is on location in Bolivia to make a very anti-Christopher Columbus revisionist epic with every single good liberal intention at heart, even going so far as to cast real locals in the parts of the beleaguered and tortured Indians. On the other hand, producer Costa (Luis Tosar) is a cynical money-man, only concerned with cutting every corner possible, even if it means exploiting the same Bolivian locals. As a revolution against the government's privatization of water comes to an explosive head, the filmmakers find themselves caught in the middle, needing to make some very honest decisions about self-preservation. — Louis Fowler

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Queen of Versailles (PG)

Magnolia Home Entertainment

Maybe I've finally watched so much reality TV that I've become inoculated against the shocking behavior of the rich. But something just didn't sit right in my first viewing of Versailles, a look at the life of billionaire time-share mogul David Siegel. About half the gently stinging portrait of greed, hubris and comeuppance is filmed just before the housing crisis freezes bank lending and puts a chokehold on Siegel's mega-business. So it is that we're left to anticipate the fall of his empire, laughing when Siegel boasts about his legally murky support of George W. Bush while sitting on a literal golden throne, and cringing when his busty wife shows off what is to be her closet's own bedroom. On repeated viewings, though, director Lauren Greenfield's empathy shines through as the wife adapts before our eyes, seeming far better equipped for austerity measures. That said, Versailles reveals nothing about the rich that isn't plainly evident on the E! Network. — Justin Strout

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Maximum Conviction (R) (Blu-ray)

Anchor Bay Home Entertainment

Steven Seagal and Stone Cold Steve Austin: two legendary action icons, together in one explosively entertaining (for all the wrong reasons) flick! The two Steves play a couple of hard-ass former Special Forces commandos-turned-private-security-contractors who are forced to lock and load when the top-secret military prison they've been chosen to help decommission is overtaken by terrorists — who, in turn, let out all of the most dangerous psychos. While the movie is pretty typical straight-to-DVD action fare, true joy comes from watching the awesomely portly Seagal waddle through one stilted aikido move after another, struggling to maintain some sort of hilariously forced Cajun dialect. Meanwhile, the beefy Austin unleashes the full blunt-force trauma of his no-nonsense redneck personality with all big guns a-blazin', and all bad quips a-snarkin'. From a pure D-movie standpoint, Maximum Conviction is maximum entertainment. — Louis Fowler

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