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Tuesday, Feb 4, 2014
These ads made us laugh, tugged at our heartstrings, or just wasted our time.

The Super Bowl is often the highest-rated event on television, and part of the reason why so many tune in to see it is the new commercials. Advertisers spent an estimated $4.5 Million for their thirty seconds of airtime, and many of them tried to surprise us, be inspiring, or just make us laugh. 


While it was far from being the best Super Bowl ever, this year’s crop of ads can best be divided into certain themes. Here is PopMatters’ guide to great moments, big laughs, and some completely overblown time-wasters.


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Friday, Aug 30, 2013
The newly released last of the Nixon audiotapes don't quite show more elusive aspects of this complicated president, and for that you might turn to the excellent documentary Our Nixon.

Last week, the last of the Nixon white House tapes were made available online. These remind us of a few things concerning the president, including his paranoia, his vulnerability, and his conscious efforts to cover up the Watergate scandal. They don’t quite show other, more elusive aspects of this complicated figure, however, and for that you might turn to the excellent documentary Our Nixon, opening in select theaters on 30 August.


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Thursday, Jul 18, 2013
Just like Julian Assange and Wikileaks, DreamWorks' The Fifth Estate is sure to generate controversy, but its first trailer entertains as well as enlightens.

Around midnight on July 16, DreamWorks released the first trailer for The Fifth Estate, the Bill Condon-directed film about Julian Assange and WikiLeaks based on Daniel Domscheit-Berg’s book, Inside WikiLeaks:  My Time with Julian Assange at the World’s Most Dangerous Website. Already the film has generated controversy, with Assange protesting the portrayal, and even people posting reactions to the new trailer on social media added nearly as many comments about the political pros and cons of WikiLeaks as about the trailer’s style or content.


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Wednesday, Jul 10, 2013
In Dawn Porter's documentary, public defenders are moved by a sense of mission, a belief that their work for justice, in representing their clients, helps to make the US justice system less unfair.

“That’s the beauty of this system,” public defender Travis Williams tells a jury in Clayton County, Georgia. “It’s set up to give people the presumption of innocence, to give them the opportunity to not only be heard, but to hold the state accountable.” As Williams completes his impassioned summation for his young, lean, awkwardly suited client during the first moments of Gideon’s Army, he underlines that though the state “has the gall to say this is not a big case,” in fact, it has “huge consequences,” namely, that “This boy will become a convicted felon.”


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Tuesday, Jul 2, 2013
Blockbusters, summer TV, and a lot of music prove that there's more fun to be had in July than just the 4th.

July is a big month in the music world, as so many major releases are hitting the shelves that discussing them warrants a separate PopMatters article. See: Listening Ahead: Upcoming Music Releases for July 2013


But the next 31 days also feature some TV debuts, big box office hits, and America’s most patriotic holiday. So get comfortable. Open a cold one, and enjoy July’s offerings.


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