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IFC Films

Armando Iannucci is the creator of Veep and The Thick of It and the writer and director of In the Loop. Those, you'll note, are all contemporary political satires. Iannucci's new movie, The Death of Stalin, is set in 1953 Moscow and tells a true-to-some-degree version of the story of, logically, Joseph Stalin's death. Historical period piece or no, The Death of Stalin is still utterly recognizable Iannucci: it's funny, it's filthy -- it's mostly about the incompetence of the powerful. And, at the same time, stories about Russian authoritarianism have a certain contemporary vibe too, ya know?

Hermitosis / Google Images For Reuse

There was a lot of pressure on Ava Duvernay to bring Madeleine L'Engle's 1962 classic book, A Wrinkle In Time, to the screen. This is the first $100-million movie directed by an African-American woman with a diverse cast chosen to fill the roles written for whites in 1962.

Alfred A. Knopf, Publisher

The Times of London has said that Martin Amis "is as talented a journalist as he is a novelist." His latest collection of essays and reportage covers 1994 through 2017, Travolta through Trump.

Amis joins us for the hour.

It only stands to reason that the most surprising Oscars might be followed by the least surprising Oscars.

John Eckman / flickr creative commons

It's The Nose's annual Academy Awards special, and this year we're doing it live at night.

The Nose has covered 15 of this year's Oscar-nominated movies. The only Best Picture nom we missed was Darkest Hour, so we're doing this show at the, uh, darkest hour of the day that we're on.

Or... something.

Green Fuse Films Inc.

On the one hand, obituaries are an amalgam of a bunch of different kinds of journalism: they're feature stories, they're profile pieces, they cover history, and they're hard news too.

On the other hand, the subject is always... dead.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Ryan Coogler's Black Panther is the eighteenth feature film entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is the sixth movie in Phase Three, and it's most directly a sequel to Captain America: Civil War, the first film of the phase.

Before a screening of "Black Panther," artist Martha Walker-Dawkins paints the face of Zaniah Welsh, a fourth-grader at West Hartford's Smith STEM School. Engineer David Johnson sponsored the event to inspire students.
Vanessa de la Torre / WNPR

As a child in the Midwest, David Johnson said he dreamed of becoming an engineer.

Daniela Marulanda / Connecticut Public Radio

Black Panther, the new movie directed by Ryan Coogler is breaking box office records with a mostly African American cast, and with women in powerful roles throughout the film. And for Gabby Williams, a forward on the UConn women’s basketball team, it’s something exciting to see as a black woman. 

Netflix

During last week's Super Bowl, Netflix announced the surprise release of the third installment in the already-super-unconvential Cloverfield film franchise... that night. Was it a genius, disruptive publicity stunt? Or was it an unceremonious, direct-to-streaming dumping of a subpar sequel? Or maybe it was both?

And speaking of unconventional: The official presidential portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama were unveiled this week. The likenesses are being heralded as a milestone in black portraiture. But, predictably, not everyone agrees.

Sony Pictures Classics

There are nine movies nominated for Best Picture at this year's Academy Awards. And, as of this week, The Nose has seen eight of them. We saw Get Out way back in last March. We saw Dunkirk over the summer. We went to Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at night. And this awards season, we've gone to Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird and Steven Spielberg's The Post and Paul Thomas Anderson's Phantom Thread.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This hour: "the search for William Grimes."

We talk to author and film producer Regina Mason about her quest to find her great-great-great-grandfather -- a New Haven resident and runaway slave. 

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Tucked away in New Haven’s Evergreen Cemetery is an ornate gravestone bearing the names of William Wirt Winchester, his infant daughter Annie, and Sarah Lockwood Pardee -- Winchester’s wife, who outlived her firearms magnate husband by some 40 years.

NEON Rated

I, Tonya is a big, brash, brightly-colored, quirky comedy that happens to be telling a story that's ultimately kind of super sad. It's that mixture of tones -- a cinematic style seemingly at odds with the film's content -- and its Oscar-nominated performances by Margot Robbie and Allison Janney that have earned the movie a 90% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The Nose picks it apart.

Focus Features

Paul Thomas Anderson's Phantom Thread is nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director for Anderson, and Best Supporting Actress for Lesley Manville. Oh, and including Best Actor in a Leading Role for Daniel Day-Lewis. It's Day-Lewis's sixth nomination in the category. He's won the award three times previously, including for his work in Anderson's There Will Be Blood. If Day-Lewis were to win again this year, he'd join Katharine Hepburn as the only people ever to win four acting Oscars. It'd be a fitting end to a career that Day-Lewis says is over.

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