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Anywhere But Here

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Adapting Mona Simpson’s novel about a single mom who flees Wisconsin for Beverly Hills with her sulky daughter, director Wayne Wang doesn’t work his Joy Luck Club magic with Anywhere But Here. Natalie Portman eloquently expresses teen angst — often without saying a word — but Susan Sarandon isn’t always convincing as the overbearing, immature bane of her existence. If you have time for just one of last year’s mother-daughter dramas, try Tumbleweeds. C+