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Like a Good Book 

When: Fri., July 26, 5:30 p.m. and Sat., July 27, 9:25 p.m. 2013
Price: $9
Here we have a mesmerizing and unexpectedly thrilling film about high school literature and amateur voyeurism. A teacher, Germain (Fabrice Luchine) at a pilot school in France — aptly called “Lycee Gustave Flaubert” — discovers in his sophomore class a gifted writer whom he adopts as a pet project. Germain has the romantic idea that he will transform his students’ lives with the study of literature. The student, a shy but incisive fellow named Claude, writes essays at the behest of Germain detailing his ventures into the house of one of his classmates, under the guise of a tutor. Claude’s presence catalyzes a series of events, while Germain, enamored of the conflict and the tension, urges Claude to dramatize his prose (a la Chekhov, a la Dickens, etc.) until reality and fiction are complexly (and still engagingly) blurred. The film is low-key and high-stakes at the same time. This one’s like a good book, hovering on the cusp of being smitten with its artifice, but sneaky and inventive and often funny. (Sam Allard)

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