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Oct 05,2007
In a sensible and well-mannered universe, the things the Farrelly brothers pull in "The Heartbreak Kid" would do little but stimulate the gag reflex.   'THE HEARTBREAK KID' - Eddie (Ben Stiller) finds himself at the kids' table in a scene from 'The Heartbreak Kid.' CNS Photo by Zade Rosenthal.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - Worthy. 2 STARS - Mixed. 1 STAR - Poor. 0 - Forget It (a dog.) Instead, the directors' gags trigger ... [full story]
1022 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
As the words of Chris McCandless' favorite writers float through”Into the Wild,” it's tempting to think a different literary diet might have saved the doomed adventurer from starvation in Alaska. Less Byron; more Darwin.   'INTO THE WILD' - It's a tough but beautiful trek for Chris (Emile Hirsch) in Sean Penn's northern wilderness drama 'Into the Wild.' CNS Photo courtesy of Paramount Vantage.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - Worthy. 2 STARS - Mixed. ... [full story]
1815 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
The Rock - oops, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson - has the whitest teeth in the world. As he lobs vast, blinding smiles in "The Game Plan," we can admire every pearly tooth.   'THE GAME PLAN' - In 'The Game Plan,' Dwayne Johnson plays an NFL quarterback living the bachelor life who discovers that he has a 7-year-old daughter from a previous relationship. CNS Photo courtesy of Ron Phillips.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - ... [full story]
1130 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
"December Boys" manages oddly to be Catholic but sexually charged, and both rather childishly. It also enshrines family values with sincere, shallow obviousness.   'DECEMBER BOYS' - Daniel Radcliffe, Teresa Palmer, James Fraser, Lee Cormie and Christian Byers star in 'December Boys,' the story of a memorable summer. CNS Photo courtesy of Lisa Tomasetti.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - Worthy. 2 STARS - Mixed. 1 STAR - Poor. 0 - Forget It (a dog.) Daniel ... [full story]
1688 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
A thriller set in Saudi Arabia, "The Kingdom" seems less ripped from the headlines than drawn from past thrillers based on previous headlines - but in a highly ballistic way, it often works remarkably well.   'THE KINGDOM' - FBI analyst Jason Bateman fights kidnappers in the political thriller 'The Kingdom.' CNS Photo courtesy of Frank Connor.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - Worthy. 2 STARS - Mixed. 1 STAR - Poor. 0 - Forget ... [full story]
1437 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
Some films can make you squirm and resist, even resentfully, but then you add up the effort as valid. "Trade" crosses that saving line.   'TRADE' - In 'Trade,' Paulina Gaitan portrays a 13-year-old girl from Mexico City whose kidnapping by sex traffickers sets in motion a desperate mission by her 17-year-old brother, played by Cesar Ramos, to save her. CNS Photo courtesy of Marco Nagel.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - Worthy. 2 STARS ... [full story]
1096 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
The sustaining dish in "Feast of Love" is Morgan Freeman as savvy old Harry Stevenson, a professor on leave from his Oregon university (the other main dish is Portland, beautifully shot).   'FEAST OF LOVE' - Morgan Freeman plays Harry Stevenson and Alexa Davalos is Chloe in the romantic comedy 'Feast of Love.' CNS Photo courtesy of Peter Sorel.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - Worthy. 2 STARS - Mixed. 1 STAR - Poor. 0 ... [full story]
1257 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
Chick flick, a term sadly unknown to Jane Austen, gets some new plumage in "The Jane Austen Book Club," Robin Swicord's film of the hit novel by Karen Joy Fowler.   'THE JANE AUSTEN BOOK CLUB' - Prudie (Emily Blunt) finds that Jane Austen makes a difference for her troubled marriage to Dean (Marc Blucas) in 'The Jane Austen Book Club.' CNS Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics.  RATINGS 4 STARS - Excellent. 3 STARS - Worthy. ... [full story]
1537 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
NEW RELEASES THE KINGDOM - A thriller set in Saudi Arabia, "The Kingdom" seems less ripped from the headlines than drawn from past thrillers based on previous headlines - but in a highly ballistic way, it often works remarkably well. The Saudi realm, triangulated by Islam, oil and royal autocracy, is called "the   'THE KINGDOM' - In 'The Kingdom,' Jamie Foxx plays the leader of a FBI team investigating the bombing of an American facility ... [full story]
3503 times read - No comment posted

Oct 05,2007
Wow. I never thought I'd say that a movie was just like a comic book - and consider that a negative. Well, there's a first for everything, right?   '4: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER' - The Fantastic Four battle an emotionally conflicted alien for the future of Earth in '4: Rise of the Silver Surfer.' CNS Photo courtesy of Diyah Pera.  DVD RATINGS 4 stars: Don't miss: rent it/buy it 3 stars: Worth the risk: rent ... [full story]
2576 times read - No comment posted

Sep 21,2007
"That's the thing," says director Judd Apatow, trying to explain the appeal of his movies, in particular "Knocked Up" (Universal, 4 stars). "It can go emotional, make you feel something, maybe even have tears - and get in a joke about doing crack. In literally the same line. "If you can do that, you're in good shape."   'KNOCKED UP' - Katherine Heigl and Seth Rogen are soon-to-be parents shopping for baby gear in the touching ... [full story]
3037 times read - No comment posted

Sep 21,2007
NEW RELEASES ACROSS THE UNIVERSE - The oomph-driven theatrical director Julie ("Lion King") Taymor can really ride herd on a film. Now, Taymor ropes, brands and stampedes the Beatles into her showbiz corral. In "Across the Universe," she and the writers serve up the fabled tunes and the 1960s fondly and as   'ACROSS THE UNIVERSE' - Eddie Izzard is featured in 'Across the Universe,' a love story set in the turbulent '60s. CNS Photo courtesy ... [full story]
3710 times read - No comment posted

Aug 31,2007
NEW RELEASES 2 DAYS IN PARIS - "2 Days in Paris" packs a lot in. At moments, you might wish Julie Delpy had spent a few days taking some stuff out. Delpy wrote, directed, edited, composed and stars as Marion, a photographer despite her retinal birth scar. But she lives verbally, often with sex as useful syntax.   '2 DAYS IN PARIS' - Adam Goldberg as Jack (center), though flanked by other males at a party, ... [full story]
2807 times read - No comment posted



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