“Killing Them Softly” is a dark comedy about low-level gangsters and thugs, set squarely within the U.S. economic collapse of autumn 2008. In heavy-handed fashion, it suggests that the mob functions as a microcosm of American capitalism. A lot of movies have tried to get their arms around this complicated topic. Here’s a look at five that did:
v “Inside Job” (2010): With the help of user-friendly graphics and Matt Damon’s narration, director Charles Ferguson breaks down the meltdown into digestible terms without ever condescending in his documentary.
v “The Queen of Versailles” (2012): When the economy collapses, David and Jackie Siegel face foreclosure on their house and start shopping for their eight kids at Walmart to save money. But the Siegels are an elderly time-share mogul and his much-younger trophy wife who were in the midst of building a 90,000-square-foot palace that would have been the biggest house in America.
v “Up in the Air” (2009): Walter Kirn’s novel, which inspired Jason Reitman’s film, came out in 2001 — long before the country’s economic collapse. But the story of a guy who jets across the country laying off employees took on a whole new relevance afterward.
v “Margin Call” (2011): First-time writer-director J.C. Chandor recreates the earliest moments of the crisis with the tight time frame and claustrophobic setting of a play.
v “Too Big to Fail” (2011): Curtis Hanson’s made-for-HBO film, based on Andrew Ross Sorkin’s book, plays sort of like a dramatized version of “Inside Job.”
Movies available Tuesday on DVD and through digital providers include:
“The Dark Knight Rises” (PG-13): The epic conclusion to filmmaker Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy. Starring Christian Bale, Tom Hardy and Anne Hathaway.
“Hope Springs” (PG-13): A devoted couple wants to spice up their marriage. Starring Meryl Streep, Tommy Lee Jones and Steve Carell.
“The Odd Life of Timothy Green” (PG): A young couple take in a special child left on their stoop. Starring Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgerton and CJ Adams.
“Beasts of the Southern Wild” (PG-13): A historic storm threatens defiant bayou community. Starring Quvenzhane Wallis and Dwight Henry.
New Year’s party at Saxon Club
The Saxon Club, 710 S. Meridian Road, will host a New Year’s Eve party with the band Guys Without Ties.
Doors open at 7 p.m., with dinner at 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are $35 for the bring-your-own-bottle event. Beer, pop, mixers, coffee and tea are included.
Call 330-758-4374 or 330-792-7973 for more information.