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Moviegoers sitting down to see Incredibles 2 are in for a tasty treat in the form of an animated short called Bao. It tells the story of an empty nester who discovers joy — and sorrow — when a steamed bun she makes comes to life.

The story is pulled from the childhood of Domee Shi, who wrote and directed the Pixar film. Shi was born in China and raised in Toronto. She started working at Pixar as an intern in 2011, and now she's the first woman to direct a Pixar short.

There is a sonic revolution happening in Cuba these days. A new generation of musicians are taking the training they received in Cuba's fabled classical music academies to new heights by incorporating not just jazz, but hip-hop, funk and any manner of experimental music. Yissy García and Bandancha may be the best example of that vanguard.

On this week's New Music Friday, All Songs Considered's Robin Hilton is joined by NPR Music's Ann Powers, Rodney Carmichael, and Stephen Thompson for a quick run through the best new releases for June 15. Highlights include Christina Aguilera's Liberation, a monument to self-empowerment with contributions from Kanye West and Anderson .Paak; the trippy, futuristic debut of pop producer SOPHIE; and a deeply emotional solo project from Linkin Park co-founder Mike Shinoda.

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In the spring of 2014, Eric Abramovitz got the opportunity of a lifetime.

He just didn't know it.

Abramovitz was the victim of a deception that a Canadian judge called "despicable," as he granted Abramovitz $350,000 Canadian dollars (more than $260,000 U.S.) in damages.

Inflation was brutal in the '70s, so it's no surprise that everything in SuperFly — a glossy update of Gordon Parks, Jr.'s gritty 1972 blaxploitation landmark Super [spacebar] Fly — is exponentially bigger. The original was a cinéma vérité quickie; nothing else in it was as memorable as Curtis Mayfield's funky soundtrack, or the still-photo montage documenting mid-level drug dealer's Youngblood Priest's operation over Mayfield's song "Pusherman." For all its antihero's coke-spoon-on-a-gold-chain swagger, Super Fly was a humble affair.

With Judd Apatow's 2005 phenomenon The 40-Year-Old Virgin becoming a teenager later this summer, it's entirely fitting that its theme of arrested adolescence continues to dominate studio comedies, despite the third-act assurance in every one of them that, yes, it's perhaps time to grow up and put away childish things. And yet here comes Tag, a hit-or-miss goof about middle-aged men still engaged in a playground battle royale, clinging to their lost youth like a cached beer keg at the end of the night.

In July 2009 Gabriel Buchmann, a Brazilian student researching poverty in Africa, disappeared while on the last leg of a year-long backpacking trip through the continent. Gabriel and the Mountain, a docudrama made by his friend Fellipe Barbosa, lets us know right off the bat that Gabriel's body was found by local villagers in Malawi nineteen days after he'd vanished.

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Playwright Arthur Miller was a giant of American theater and a champion of social justice. On stage, his iconic plays Death of a Salesman and All My Sons portrayed the American family with tight bonds and searing discord. Much of the tension he wrote about was between fathers and sons.

As it turns out, Arthur Miller was wracked by family turmoil of his own: He had a son with Down syndrome, and he and his wife kept the boy's existence a secret. That story is now a play, called Fall, that's having its world premiere at Boston's Huntington Theatre.

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Despite its title, the new romantic comedy "The Year Of Spectacular Men" is mostly about women. Critic Bob Mondello says men do play a role, though, by providing lots of complications.

Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, GA

Savannah businessman Charles Lamar on Nov. 28, 1858, became the first person in 40 years to land a slave ship on American soil.

That event is the subject of Jim Jordan’s new book, “The Slave-Trader’s Letter-Book: Charles Lamer, the Wanderer, and other Tales of the African Slave Trade.”

Jordan was able to reconstruct the story because he got his hands on valuable research material — Charles Lamar’s own letters, which most historians didn’t even believe existed.   


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In 1960, a graduate student at Yerkes Observatory named Carl Sagan had a problem: The temperature on the planet Venus was too high. For decades, scientists had thought that Venus was covered in clouds because it was a watery world, possibly teeming with life, a slightly hotter version of Earth. Venus is nearly the same size as Earth, and a bit closer to the Sun, so it seemed reasonable to think it was just a somewhat balmier version of our own world.

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There's a little something for everyone in Savannah this weekend. Connect Savannah's Anna Chandler has some suggestions.


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