June 24, 2009 THE VILLADOM TIMES I & III • Page 27 Youth’s performance highlights ‘Phoebe in Wonderland’ by Dennis Seuling “Phoebe in Wonderland” (Image Entertainment) features Phoebe Lichten (Elle Fanning), who suffers from obsessive compulsive disorder and cannot control what she says. She feels like an outcast at school, surrounded by peers who do not understand her condition, and teachers who are annoyed by her constant disruption. Her mother, Hillary (Felicity Huffman), an aspiring author, goes head to head with a psychiatrist and school principal who are more concerned with medicating Phoebe so she will conform to appropriate classroom behavior than with attending to her issues. A new drama teacher, Miss Dodger (Patricia Clarkson), is staging a production of “Alice in Wonderland.” Unlike other teachers, she allows the kids to make suggestions, ask questions, and discover the theme of the play by themselves. Inspired by this new teacher, Phoebe decides to audition for the role of Alice. This is a very good film that did not have an extensive theatrical run. Fanning, four years younger than her famous sister Dakota, brings tremendous empathy to the role of Phoebe and displays a mature understanding of the character and her frustrations. Huffman plays a woman trying to finish an analytical book while maintaining a household and dealing with the demands “rebels” who treat children as intelligent, thinking beings. She sees in Phoebe a kindred spirit, and the bond that emerges seems real. Jamie (Ian Colletti), another aspiring actor in the play, befriends Phoebe and brings his own costume to audition for the role of the Red Queen. Writer/director Daniel Barnz uses the theme of the misfit to tie the story together. Performances are uniformly first-rate with young Fanning anchoring the film. The DVD contains no extras. “Waltz with Bashir” (Sony Pictures Classics) combines two unlikely genres: animation and the documentary. A veteran of the 1982 Lebanon War recounts his recurring nightmare to writer/director/narrator Ari Forman, who is then motivated to seek out others’ recollections of that war. Because no footage exists of the interviewees’ memories, Forman renders them and the subjects themselves in animation, using a technique that has a smooth-inked look rendered with (continued on Crossword page) #1 German Restaurant in Bergen & Passaic Counties! TAKE TIME OUT FOR LUNCH Elle Fanning stars as the title character in ‘Phoebe in Wonderland.’ KIRKERS NEW Businessmen’s & Senior Lunch Special of her daughter’s condition. Her frustration seethes just below a veneer of civility until it boils over at the stonewalling of narrowthinking professionals. Hillary’s dark hair distances the character from Huffman’s famous “Desperate Housewives” TV role. Clarkson is a perfect fit for the caring teacher who uses drama as a way to reach children. Everyone has encountered these Includes Soup or Salad, Vegetable, Choice of Entree and Coffee/Tea Over 23 Entrees from $895 - $1395 •Served Noon - 3 pm Daily Sauerbraten, Wienerchnitzel, “Wursts” Platter, Prime Rib, Stuffed Shrimp with Crabmeat Shore Thing - Broiled or Fried TUESDAY SPECIAL Our Top “6” Entrees Only $12. Served 6-8pm www.kirkers.com • All Major Credit Cards Accepted • Open Mon - Sat • Noon til 11:30 pm 237 Diamond Bridge Ave, Hawthorne • 973-427-7700 �������������� ����������� ��������������������������������������������� ������������� �������������������������� 4-22-09 For Ester......Janine ��������������������������������������������� KirkersTakeTime(4-22-09) 3 col x 3” ������������ ������� �������� ������������� �������� ������ �������������� ���������� ��������������������������������� ����������������������������� ����������������������������������������������� ������� ������ ������������� ������������������ ������������� ������������� ���������� �������� �������� ���������� ����� ������������ ������������ HAPPY HOUR ������������������ ������������ �������������� ��������� ������� ������������������������� ��������������������������� ������������ ���������������������� ����� ������������������� �������������� � �� ��������������������������� ������������������������������������������������ ������������������������������������������� ����������������������