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Wednesday, Jan 23 2008
Soccer — or football, as it's called by the vast majority of its hundreds of millions of fans worldwide — is heralded as the ultimate team sport. Every lineup, from Manchester United to the national squad of Paraguay, forges its own style of play, and its own identity. And yet there's ample room on the pitch for individual talents and personalities to assert themselves. A handful of superstars, from Pélé to Ronaldo to Beckham, have even been able to dominate the action at the highest levels of competition, and have become folk heroes into the bargain. The French star Zinédine Zidane approached that rarefied level at his peak, though regrettably in this country he's best known for head-butting an Italian player in the final minutes of the 2006 World Cup. The remarkable documentary Zidane, a Twenty-First-Century Portrait, back in a return engagement, employed 17 cameras to relentlessly track every move the Real Madrid midfielder made in the course of a 2005 match. More than just another sports movie — how could it be, what with Scottish drone-maestros Mogwai kicking in the soundtrack? — this is a study in pride, stamina, frustration, and, yes, teamwork.
Wed., Feb. 13, 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 15-16, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 16, 2, 4 & 9:30 p.m., 2008

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Michael Fox


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