Archive for January, 2013

Foreign Films Feb13

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

Amarcord, directed by Frederico Fellini

(In Italian, with English subtitles)

In 1930′s fascist Italy lives a young boy in a village both charming and somewhat isolated from the growing dangers around it. Titta is on the edge of adolescence, and even though in many ways still a child, he is not immune from the bellicosity and arrogance of the local fascists. He also senses that this too shall pass. What will endure, though, is the collection of characters in his town, bathed in eccentricity, hope, longing, and love for their village and their way of life. This film is at least semi-autobiographical and has both a sense of historical realism and that surreal touch that only Fellini can add to a story. HCPL owns many of Fellini’s films on DVD. Try a few of the classics: Fellini’s 8 1/2, La Strada, Nights of Cabiria, I Vitelloni, The White Sheik, La Dolce Vita, and many more.

The Blue Angel, directed by Josef von Sternberg

(In German, with English subtitles)

This older DVD (1930) has been in the HCPL system for a while, but it might be easy to miss, lacking the glamour of color or the glitz of 3-D. Ahh, but it does have something very special – Marlene Dietrich, who plays the vamp Lola-Lola, to Emil Jennings’ staid and respectable Herr Professor Rath. Lola performs at the Blue Angel, singing in her signiture deep, alluring voice. She has captured the hearts of several young men who attend the local gymnasium, or high school, where the quiet, unassuming Professor Rath teaches. When he visits the Blue Angel to chastise Lola and warn her off his young charges, he need take only one look to be smitten enough to give it all up – the years of scholarship and respectability – all for his beloved Lola. This is a story of a downfall, but certainly not the downfall of our Lola. She’s a woman who will land on her feet no matter what. But what of Herr Professor? An intoxicating classic!

Corpo Celeste, directed by Alice Rohrwacher

(In Italian, with English subtitles)

Marta, about to step into adolescence, has returned to Italy from a lengthy stay abroad in Switzerland and finds her only social life to be her instructional classes for Confirmation in the local Catholic Church. While she learns of the Catholic teachings of the sufferings of Christ and of Christian charity, she also learns of a real world where Christian teachings seem to be thrown out the window for the sake of ambition or convenience. She must embark on her own spiritual journey of discovery to find that so sought-after depth of understanding of the world around her.

Hermano, directed by Marcel Rasquin

(In Spanish, with English subtitles)

Again another movie focused on soccer as a way out of poverty, Hermano tells the story of two brothers, or rather two young men raised as brothers, since Daniel years earlier was rescued as an infant from a trash heap by Julio’s mother. Julio and Daniel grow up together, equally loved, equally cared for, but also in equal poverty. They both play splendid soccer and have a shot at playing before the scouts for the big leagues. Daniel studies hard and really tries to climb out of his poverty the hard way, while Julio slides easily into gang life. But when Daniel witnesses the accidental death of their mother by a gang member, he must make some very difficult decisions about what to reveal and what to keep hidden from the revenge-filled Julio.

Hospitalité, directed by Koji Fukada

(In Japanese, with English subtitles)

Kobayashi is an unassuming man running a small printing shop in Tokyo, living above his shop with his wife, daughter, and divorced sister . It is a small, cramped world, but it holds some security and stability for him and his family. Along comes Kagawa, who may or may not be the son of an old family acquaintance, who may or may not be married to a woman who may or may not be Brazilian or European or whatever. He insinuates himself into the family, and in what rolls between comedy and tragedy, the story takes off from there. Who is Kagawa and just what is his game? Kobayashi can only gasp and gawk and wonder in his befuddled way.

Inspector Nardone, directed by Fabrizio Costa

(In Italian, with English subtitles)

Il commissario Mario Nardone has recently arrived in Milan from Naples, where he finds corruption, mystery, and romance. Having already been banished from the Naples police force for his work against corruption, he does not endear himself to his new boss, the police commissioner, when he jumps right into an investigation of the commissioner’s dear friend, Barone. Never daunted, Nardone assembles a crack team of like-minded detectives, and off they go to eliminate crime in postwar Italy. Based on a true-life police inspector, Nardone brings integrity to the Milanese police and entertaining mystery to the viewing audience in this set of DVDs, originally a TV series.

La Promesse, directed by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne

(In French, with English subtitles)

Fifteen-year-old Igor lives with his father, Roger, whose occupation seems to be not much more than exploiting undocumented aliens in Europe. While Roger is a schemer and is nearly heartless in his efforts to make money off of desperate people, his son has some doubts. When a young woman from Burkino Faso and her baby arrive to join her husband, Igor takes a liking to her. But then her husband dies in an accident, and Roger tries to hide the body and the truth from her. Igor begins then to understand the nature of evil and to question whether he wants to be part of it all. The brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne also directed Lorna’s Silence and L’Enfant, owned by HCPL.

17 Girls, directed by Delphine Coulin

(In French, with English subtitles)

Camille is a high school student in the rather shabby, working-class city of Lorient in France. When she finds out that she is pregnant, her posse of friends finds it intriguing and at least something a little bit exciting in their otherwise dull teenaged lives. They make a pact to become pregnant together and raise their children in any fashion they can as long as it’s not as they were raised. They will live communally and work together to bring up their tiny charges. Well, they are teens, after all, and their lives are a bit on the dull side, so this is a big deal. So big that in all, seventeen girls fall into line in this misadventure. With humor and some sorrow, the movie leads us along as the girls face their realities of being mothers. This story is loosely based on a real event that occurred in Massachusetts in 2008.

New Release Tuesday – January 29

Friday, January 25th, 2013

New Release Tuesday, January 29:

Big Boys Gone Bananas

Cold Light of Day

Downton Abbey Season 3

Hotel Transylvania

Mighty Mississippi

Seven Psychopaths

Tails of Abbygail

New Release Tuesday – January 22

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

New Release Tuesday, January 22:

Nature Calls

Nobody Walks

The Paperboy


Searching for Sugar Man

New Release Tuesday – January 15

Monday, January 14th, 2013

New Release Tuesday, January 15:

17 Girls


Farewell My Queen

Nickelodeon: Let’s Learn 1, 2, 3

The Other Dream Team

The Possession

Runaway Slave

Taken 2

Thomas & Friends Muddy Matters

To Rome With Love

Won’t Back Down


Monday, January 7th, 2013

(Belcamp, Maryland – January 7, 2013) The Harford County Public Library Board of Trustees is seeking a Student Liaison representative as an ex officio member of the Board. The Student Liaison is chosen in cooperation with public and private high schools in Harford County and applicants should currently be in their junior year and will serve during their senior year. Student applications must be submitted by Friday, March 15th. The role of Student Liaison is to obtain input on library services, policies, and materials collections from their peers, to encourage teens to consider librarianship as a career, to encourage use of library services by teens, and to gain practical experience in the operations of their government.

The Board of Library Trustees will interview candidates and select a Student Liaison representative to serve for one year, beginning July 2013. The Student Liaison representative is a member of the Board and receives agendas and all non-confidential Board materials. He or she is a non-voting member and is excluded from participation in executive sessions.
The student representative must:
• Be a resident of Harford County
• Have parental/guardian permission to serve
• Meet the Eligibility Requirements for Participation in Extra-Curricular Activities of the county schools or their private school

No salary is paid for the service, but appropriate expenses will be paid on the same basis of other Board members. Credit for the student representatives’ service may be provided if their schools’ policy permits.

The application can be found online at Please return completed application and essay to: Mary Hastler, Director, Harford County Public Library, 1221-A Brass Mill Road, Belcamp, MD 21017 no later than March 15th.


New Release Tuesday – January 8

Friday, January 4th, 2013

New Release Tuesday, January 8:

Angelina Ballerina Dance Around the World

Barney: Let’s Go to the Moon


Enlightened Season 1


Game Change

George Lopez: It’s Not Me, It’s You

The Hour Season 2

House At the End of the Street

Jim Henson’s Pajanimals: Pajanimals Play

Midsomer Murders Set 21

Now Is Good

Red Dwarf X



Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! – Best of Widget

Newly Requestable DVDs

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013
The Avengers
The Babymakers
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1
Bel Ami
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
The Cabin in the Woods
Damsels in Distress
The Five-year Engagement
The Flowers of War
For Greater Glory the True Story of Cristiada
Girl in Progress
The Letter
The Lucky One
The Magic of Belle Isle
Oranges & Sunshine: A True Story
Resident Evil: Damnation
Salvation Boulevard
Snow White & the Huntsman
Suddenly Single
The Tall Man
What To Expect When You’re Expecting
Woman Thou Art Loosed:  On the 7th Day
Barbie: The Princess & the Popstar
Barney: Most Loveable Moments
Beverly Hills Chihuahua 3: Viva la Fiesta!
The Fairies: Fairy Fun
Halloween Spooktakular
SpongeBob SquarePants: Seascape Capers
Spot: Storytime with Spot
Strawberry Shortcake: Jammin’ with Cherry Jam
Thomas & Friends: Blue Mountain Mystery the Movie
The Wiggles: Big Birthday!

New Release Tuesday – January 1

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013

New Release Tuesday, January 1:

Dino Dan: To Catch a Dino

Doctor Zhivago

Justified Season 3

Little Birds


Trial & Retribution Set 6