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Week In Preview

October 18, 1998


Gary Ross' modern fairy tale "Pleasantville" finds a fictional town granted a chance to experience the wonders, comedies and dangers of real life. Jeff Daniels, Tobey Maguire and, at right, William H. Macy and Joan Allen head the cast of the film, which opens Friday in general release.


Roberto Benigni's "Life Is Beautiful" is a Chaplinesque fable about the power of imagination, set against the harrowing backdrop of Europe in the throes of World War II. A likely selection as Italy's entry in the foreign film Oscar competition, the picture opens Friday at selected theaters.


"Fosse: A Celebration in Song and Dance," a journey through the career of showman extraordinaire Bob Fosse, opens Wednesday at the Ahmanson Theatre. Conceived by Richard Maltby Jr., Chet Walker and Ann Reinking, it'll include rarely seen early works and pieces never before seen on stage.


The instrumental ensemble Hesperion XX and the vocal ensemble La Capella Reial de Catalunya occupy Royce Hall at UCLA on Friday for a program of pre-19th century music from Spain. The groups will perform works ranging from ancient romances to court music and Spanish baroque songs.


The always-changing climate of Cuba is represented in the works of several of its artists in three new shows opening Friday: Los Carpinteros at Iturralde Gallery, a survey of photographs by Alberto Korda at Couturier Gallery, and photographs of Havana by Jose Figueroa at Jan Kesner Gallery.


Menudo hasn't exactly been a breeding ground for solo stars, but one alumnus of the Puerto Rican pop confectionary is making a mark. Singer Ricky Martin plays the Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim on Saturday, where he'll demonstrate the style that's brought him international success.


Lionel Hampton, the first important vibraphonist, is one of only half a dozen active jazz musicians left who recorded in the 1920s. Hamp will be celebrating his 90th birthday tonight at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre along with Lalo Schifrin, Ernie Andrews, Gerry Wiggins and others.


After the dismal "Speed 2: Cruise Control," Sandra Bullock returned to the screen in fine form in "Hope Floats," a sentimental romance about a woman who returns to her hometown afer her marriage breaks up. Gena Rowlands and Harry Connick Jr. also star in the drama, due out Tuesday.


Early Warning: The Thanksgiving weekend will feature a duel between Disney's "A Bug's Life" and the sequel "Babe: Pig in the City," both opening Nov. 25.

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