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Quill: The Life of a Guide Dog (NR)

Music Box Films

I recently watched the HBO documentary One Nation Under Dog, which featured footage of stray puppies being gassed to death. So thank God for the Japanese docu-drama Quill: The Life of a Guide Dog; my tears of hate and loathing were quickly replaced with tears of love and joy. We follow the life of Quill, a golden Labrador trained to be a guide dog for the blind. We tag along with his various families, and watch as the pup trains rigorously. It's incredibly beautiful when he's placed with a prickly gentleman who can't stand dogs, to see the blossoming of their relationship. Quill is a truly powerful, moving masterpiece of canine cinema. — Louis Fowler

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The Kill List (NR)

MPI Home Video

Before it goes completely insane in the third act, writer-director Ben Wheatley (Down Terrace) tells a tidily familiar story in The Kill List — a couple of hit men with differing philosophies, one last job, etc. — in the messiest way possible. Jay (Neil Maskell) and Gal (Michael Smiley) are given, yes, a "kill list," which includes jobs like "librarian" and "priest." What unfolds is a punishing flick in which even some of the victims admit they deserve it, and the men delivering justice do so with utter brutality. But just when you think Kill List is as straightforward as its title, things get murky, even metaphysical, and the thread comes undone. — Justin Strout

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Dance Moms: Season One (NR)


I thought reality-television villains couldn't get better (or worse) than Storage Wars' Dave Hester. Then I saw Abby Lee Miller, the cruel Emperor Palpatine figurehead of the Dance Moms. She's the owner of the Abby Lee Dance Company and dammit, she produces winners, by any means necessary. Prepubescent girls, all forced to do inappropriate, near-burlesque dance routines, cry and starve and desperately seek Abby's approval, all for the entertainment of the masses. Between this and Toddlers and Tiaras, America has spoken and we love to see children put in distress for our amusement. Lunchables and circuses for all! — Louis Fowler


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