Cheap Sophistication

For the first time in history, the poor are fatter than the bourgeoisie. When it comes to the culture we consume, this holds true as well: Syndicated reruns and shitty flicks from Redbox cost less than, say, that new Jean Renoir boxed set, and they’re a thousand times easier to track down. Do a bit of research, though, and even the brokest of the broke can feast for damn near free. Take The Earrings of Madame De, director Max Ophuls’ lush and cutting masterpiece of betrayal and misery among the kind of people who used to be the fat ones — wealthy, adulterous French folks. Tonight at 7 at the Tivoli (4050 Pennsylvania, 913-383-7756), you can savor the sumptuous interiors, the complexities of cheating, and the rise and fall of love and fortune. You can toast Ophuls’ restless camera, his life-stuffed frames and his brisk storytelling, and you can celebrate the fact that, as part of their Janus Film Series, UMKC and the Tivoli are charging just two bucks for one of the program’s best films yet.

Tivoli Cinemas

Tue., Oct. 16, 7 p.m., 2007