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The Big Ten


Heavenly Jewels

Relics were a big deal back in the Middle Ages, when the remains of saints were turned into lavish objects of devotion for the wealthy. “Treasures of Heaven: Saints, relics and devotion in medieval Europe,” at the British Museum, brings together more than 150 such items from more than 40 institutions—including European churches, the Vatican and museums— for the first time ever. BEGINS JUNE 23


A Better Jam

It’s only logical that Pearl Jam front-man Eddie Vedder would go from the vanguard of grunge music to recording a solo album accompanied chiefly by ukulele. Okay, so maybe it isn’t. But Ukulele Songs is nonetheless compelling stuff, featuring the talents of Cat Power and Glen Hansard of Once fame, who contributes to a cover of the Everly Brothers’ “Sleepless Nights.” OUT NOW


Revved Up

Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) and his tow truck friend Mater (Larry the Cable Guy) join forces once again for Cars 2, featuring an all-star cast and Pixar’s 3-D pyrotechnics. This time the pair heads overseas to the first-ever World Grand Prix, which will determine the world’s fastest car, and to a secret spy mission that sends Mater tearing up the streets of Europe and Japan. JUNE 24


Family Ties

After his mother dies, Oliver (Ewan McGregor) gets the double whammy of finding out that his father (Christopher Plummer) is gay and gravely ill. Based in part on indie director Mike Mills’ own family, Beginners is a tender, sad and sometimes funny look at the confusion of love and family. JUNE 3


Chilling Tale

Just when it looks like the Scandinavian thriller craze has finally reached its cold, bleak conclusion (the late Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo series ends; Henning Mankell retires Detective Wallander), there’s a twist! Norwegian Jo Nesbø’s newest, The Snowman, may have outbleaked, outgored and outwitted them all with a crackling tale that’s chilly enough to read on even the hottest beach. OUT NOW


The Big Beat

After garnering widespread acclaim for his 2008 album, Seun Anikulapo Kuti, the youngest son of Afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti, releases From Africa With Fury: Rise, featuring Fela’s band Egypt 80 and produced by the great Brian Eno. It’s a de mix of danceable funk beats and sharp-elbowed politics from the crown prince of the Nigerian sound. JUNE 21


Bite Marks

Sharks, still reeling from the public relations disaster that was Jaws, find an ally in Juliet Eilperin, who casts these terrors of the deep in a better light in her book, Demon Fish: Travels Through the Hidden World of Sharks. Eilperin travels the globe, following her reporter’s nose to give readers an in-depth understanding of the ocean’s top predator and its at times, well, iffy relationship with people. JUNE 14

8 TV

Operating Procedure

Equal parts E.R. and M.A.S.H., ABC’s new medical procedural The Hot Zone follows a group of military doctors from the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and other allied countries as they struggle to cope with the aftermath of deadly combat in southern Afghanistan in 2006. JUNE 21


Crazy Eights

In 1979, a group of kids in small-town Ohio, blithely In 1979, a group of kids in small-town Ohio, blithely unaware that they’re in a film called unaware that they’re in a film called Super 8 by Lost

creator J.J. Abrams, decide it’s a good idea to make a little movie. But when they witness a truck colliding with a government-owned train, inexplicable things start happening, and a local cop sets out to discover the truth. JUNE 10


It Might get loud

June is festival season in the music world, and this month fans have a daunting crop of fests to choose from. The Bonnaroo Festival in Tennessee (6/9) will feature Arcade Fire, the Black Keys and Mumford & Sons. Denmark’s Roskilde Festival has M.I.A. and Kings of Leon. Belgium’s Rock Werchter (6/30) has the Chemical Brothers, PJ Harvey and Kings of Leon. Those not into the Kings of Leon can try England’s Glastonbury Festival (6/22), which offers such alternatives as U2, Crystal Castles and Beyoncé, and the Solid Sound Festival (6/24) in Massachusetts, which features Wilco, Levon Helm and comedian John Hodgman of Daily Show and Mac commercial fame.

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