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Hollywood's smaller offerings

Hollywood’s smaller offerings — We check out some releases that might have flown under your radar, including ”Twelve Monkeys,” ”White Man’s Burden,” and ”Wild Bill”

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A strikingly unstudly Brad Pitt costars in Twelve Monkeys, a futuristic thriller about a time traveler (Bruce Willis) who enlists the help of a psychiatrist (Madeleine Stowe) to save the world’s population from a deadly holocaust. John Travolta trades in his jet black Pulp Fiction locks for a doltish red ‘do in White Man’s Burden, playing a factory worker tormented by his racist boss (Harry Belafonte). Jeff Bridges and Ellen Barkin finally ride into town as Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane in the delayed Western Wild Bill. Al Pacino lightens up, sort of, for Two Bits as a weathered immigrant who spends his last hours teaching life lessons to his grandson. Jennifer Jason Leigh stars as a talentless rock star wannabe (and the most disturbed young woman since Hedy in Single White Female) with Mare Winningham as her folk-rock superstar sister in the dark grunge drama Georgia. Leslie Nielsen does the movie-spoof thing once again in Mel Brooks’ satire Dracula: Dead and Loving It. Zhang Yimou’s Shanghai Triad stars Gong Li (Raise the Red Lantern) as a torch singer who befriends a 14-year-old boy. It’s child’s play for Kirstie Alley and Steve Guttenberg, who team up with those adorable Olsen twins in It Takes Two. Kevin Bacon, Bridget Fonda, and Phil Collins lend their voices to Balto, the animated story of a lifesaving dog’s trek across Alaska. Matt Dillon provides inspiration to a teenage Irish dwarf named Frankie Starlight who wants to be a writer. In Mr. Holland’s Opus, a music teacher and composer (Richard Dreyfuss) struggles with his son’s deafness. A college professor must choose between her minister fiancé and the woman she loves in When Night Is Falling, which will be released unrated after receiving an NC-17. Charles Matthau directs dad Walter and Carrie‘s Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie (this time as sisters) in the Southern drama The Grass Harp. The adult fairy tale The City of Lost Children features a French-speaking Ron Perlman. And Mia Farrow spends her holiday season fleeing from a hitman in Reckless.