Culture » Film

Movie Picks

Marvin (Rob Schneider) seeks shelter in the neighbors doghouse
  • Marvin (Rob Schneider) seeks shelter in the neighbors doghouse

Films recommended by our reviewers are indicated by an *.

Films that do not appear here have not yet been screened by our reviewers.

The Animal (PG-13)
See full review.

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Along Came a Spider (R)
Along Came a Spider favors surprisingly futile plot twists over see character and story development. The film lays a trail of suspense thriller clichs so meticulously that you can almost hear the screenwriter sweating over how to kick sand over the predictable plot. Morgan Freeman, an unshakable actor capable of youthful athleticism, dignified logic and emotional depths far greater than the script provides, is the sole reason to see this otherwise unsatisfying exploitation thriller. See full review. -- Cole Smithey

Silver Cinemas

Angel Eyes (R)
So little actually happens in this sometimes mesmerizing, mostly boring little movie that it's hard to recall many specific scenes. The viewer waits through one gorgeous scenario after another -- Jennifer Lopez as tough cop Sharon reclining alone on her bed late at night, strapped into a bulletproof vest, Sharon and love interest Catch swimming beneath the moonlight in a glittering watering hole -- hoping for a plot to unfold. But there is no plot, except the eventual revelation that the two have met before -- no beginning, no middle and a hokey ending. Lopez and Jim Caviezel as Catch are both so attractive that the camera-lingering aspects of the film are quite pleasant, but a missing plot essentially means death to a movie that dwells in the land of gritty reality. Much as we enjoy gazing into the angel eyes of these two lonesome creatures, we wish more that something -- anything! -- would happen. See full review. -- KCE


*Bridget Jones's Diary (R)
Bridget Jones's Diary, the movie, leaves most of the funny parts of the novel intact. Bridget is still a 30-something single woman bent on self-improvement who writes daily in her diary the amount of pounds lost and gained, the number of cigarettes smoked, the alcohol units consumed. She swears that she will find herself a nice, adult man for a serious relationship, and immediately finds herself in bed with her charming and ne'er-do-well boss. The movie's great strength is in the casting. Rene Zellweger is dead-on perfect as the perpetually injured, hopeful and feisty Bridget. Hugh Grant is utterly delightful as her slimy and sexy boss, Daniel. See full review. -- AL

Cinemark 16

A Knight's Tale (PG-13)
A silly, light-weight medieval tale set largely in the jousting ring, with combat scenes so innocuous that the clashing of lances at high speed is visually digestible, even for the sensitive viewer. Babe/boy Heath Ledger plays William Thatcher, a tow-headed peasant who assumes the identity of an aristocrat in order to gain entrance to the ring. His successes take him from tournament to tournament, picking up characters along the way. Don't look for a history lesson, though the film tries lamely to sell you one in class warfare, and don't expect to be offended or riled up. A Knight's Tale doesn't have the dramatic power to raise a hair, but it's not a complete waste of time either. See full review. -- KCE

Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Memento (R)
Directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Guy Pearce, Memento is a startling murder mystery in the tradition of Alfred Hitchcock, and a bundle of promise for everything that follows from Nolan. The story: Leonard Shelby (Pearce) lost his wife in a brutal murder/rape, and with the police uninvolved, is determined to solve the crime himself. But he's severely handicapped: Due to brain damage suffered while fighting his wife's attacker, he can remember everything that happened prior to the accident, but everything since is forgotten -- over and over again. The most strategic device in the film is an inverted timeline. The story begins at the end and works backward, giving us -- and Leonard -- tiny clues to discover how the tumultuous plot pieces together. We experience Leonard's frustration; like him, we have no memory of what has come before. You have to promise to see this movie. Memento is inventive, compelling, and worth seeing twice. See full review. -- Patton Dodd

Kimball's Twin Peak

*Moulin Rouge (PG-13)
See full review.

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Kimball's Twin Peak Theater, Tinseltown

*O Brother, Where Art Thou? (PG-13)
God love the Coen brothers. What kind of mind imagines Homer's Odyssey set in Depression-era rural Mississippi? This funny, slight idea is lovingly and solidly conceived and executed. George Clooney is pitch perfect as Ulysses Everett McGill, a smart-talking, slick-looking con man who breaks away from a penal farm chain gang and drags along the two guys who happen to be hooked up to him on either side -- dour Pete (John Turturro) and hapless Delmar (Tim Blake Nelson). The Coens create a perfectly imagined universe, inhabited by fiends and angels of all sorts. Tim Blake Nelson's performance is as sweet and friendly as a good old hound dog. Best musical soundtrack of last year. See full review. -- KCE

Silver Cinemas

Pearl Harbor (PG-13)
A bald-faced exploitation flick, preying on our nation's collective if fuzzy memory of being attacked, faulty in its historic re-creation, insipid in its lame, manipulative love story, and embarrassingly vapid in its telling of one of the critical military attacks of the 20th century. The outstanding computer-generated special effects serve only to desensitize the audience: The carnage of the "date that will live in infamy" never seems real or human. Character development in this overly long and sentimental love/war story is non-existent. The heroes played by Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett merely spout lines borrowed from vintage World War II dramas while posturing through their love triangle. See full review. -- KCE

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Save the Last Dance (PG-13)
While it doesn't exactly revolutionize race relations in the U.S., the interracial romance Save the Last Dance is well-intentioned, well-crafted and well-acted. It manages to find its way around stupid racist pitfalls by giving the two main characters -- Sara (Julia Stiles), a white suburban girl, and Derek (Sean Patrick Thomas), a black inner city boy who dreams of getting out of the ghetto -- equal weight. See full review. -- AL

Silver Cinemas

The Tailor of Panama (R)
In The Tailor of Panama, a film based on John le Carr's novel of the same name, MI6 spy Andy Osnard (Pierce Brosnan) is dispatched to Panama to learn what is to become of the canal now that it is wholly owned by Panama. In order to gather information in his newfound post, Osnard hooks up with tailor Harry Pendel (Geoffrey Rush), a tailor to all the new luminaries whose shady past makes him susceptible to bribes and blackmail. Unlike the earlier cold war thrillers at which Le Carr so excelled, there never seems to be quite enough at stake in The Tailor of Panama to elicit the heart-stopping, nail-biting response of a true thriller. It is only at the end where we see the cost of Pendel's deceit on his good friends that we realize something real has been lost. See full review. -- AL

Chapel Hills

*Traffic (R)
With Traffic, director Steven Soderbergh (Erin Brockovich) delivers his most complex, pertinent, gritty, opinionated and well-acted film to date. The complex plot is moved forward by four separate stories that eventually intersect. All illustrate the impossibility of winning the War on Drugs -- a monumental battle resulting in loss of life, personal tragedy, untold loss of public funds thrown at the problem and massive profits for the suppliers. Soderbergh films his outstanding ensemble cast with a handheld camera, upping the immediacy of the action, and colors the segments with different filters, reminding us of where we are and color-coding our emotional response. See full review. -- KCE

Silver Cinemas

Add a comment

Clicky Quantcast