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Movie Picks

28 Days Later (R)

Director Danny Boyle (Trainspotting, Shallow Grave) has crafted a film that peddles in suggestive terror and raw gore. The story is set in England where a cell of animal rights zealots have liberated chimps infected with the "rage" virus. Twenty-eight days later, in a hospital bed, Jim (Cillian Murphy) emerges naked and alone from a car accident coma. He eventually meets up with fellow survivors Selena (Naomie Harris) and Mark (Noah Huntley), who give a sober "while you were sleeping" memo. What's refreshing about Boyle's apocalypse is that its horrors are matched with beauty: the quiet of deserted highways, abandoned bucolic estates and the glee of free shopping. It's nice to see a sci-fi flick that's not bogged down in the ponderous exploration of imagined technologies. 28 Days deals with a question more profound than any gadgetry. Namely, what if the end of the world is merely a dawn of another? It's substantive brain candy during a season of Happy Meal schlockbusters. --John Dicker

Cinemark 16, Carmike 10, Tinseltown

2 Fast 2 Furious (PG-13)

The sequel to Fast and the Furious Paul Walker as renegade cop Brian O'Conner. A frequently shirtless Tyrese Gibson fills the hunkiness gap left by Vin Diesel. --Not reviewed

Tinseltown, Carmike 10

Alex and Emma (PG-13)

Take the worst romantic comedy you've ever seen-- one with no clever dialogue, abysmal comic timing, and unlikable characters, and multiply it by zero. That's the relative value of this stinker from director Rob Reiner. Alex and Emma, starring the otherwise capable and attractive Luke Wilson and Kate Hudson, asks us to care about the coupling of a pair of really obnoxious Gen-Xers. Alex Sheldon (Wilson) is a self-proclaimed brilliant novelist and one who is destitute, He must deliver the follow-up to his debut novel in 30 days to pay off his gambling debts or get whacked. Enter Emma Dinsmore (Hudson), a stenographer lured to Alex's apartment under false pretenses, but who stays to take dictation of his novel because, well, there is just something intriguing about him. He spouts out a novel and she interrupts constantly as they "work" together over the next couple weeks. We are ferried back and forth from their contemporary setup to the working s of Alex's "novel." --Kathryn Eastburn

Chapel Hills 15

Bruce Almighty (PG-13)

After a less than enthusiastic reception to more serious roles in The Majestic and Man on the Moon, Jim Carrey returns to his tried-and-true physical comedy routine. Carrey plays an insufferable television reporter longing for an anchor job. When he doesn't get the job he rants at God, blaming the Almighty for his misfortunes and his "trivial life." He receives an audience with God (Morgan Freeman), who wants to go on vacation and leaves Bruce in-charge. There is little logic to the film's journey to its obvious conclusion, way too many trademark Jim Carrey stunts minus interesting characterization, and far too little screen time for co-stars Freeman and Jennifer Aniston. -- Kathryn Eastburn

Cinemark 16, Chapel Hills 15, Tinseltown

Bugs (NR)

Dame Judi Dench narrates this inside look at the secret world of bugs, presented by Terminix. No joke.

--Not reviewed

Cinemark IMAX

Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle (PG-13)

The trio is played by Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu, and Drew Barrymore. Lots of breasts bouncing, espionage, martial arts, and disguise with no real plot. --Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Cinemark 16, Chapel Hills 15, Tinseltown

Finding Nemo (G)

Animated Disney flick about cute fishies, featuring the voices of Albert Brooks, Ellen DeGeneres, Geoffrey Rush, and, I kid you not, Willem Dafoe. --Not reviewed

Tinseltown, Cinemark 16, Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15

Ghost of the Abyss (NR) (in IMAX 3D)

Director James Cameron once again exploits, oops that's explores the wreckage of the Titanic -- this time in 3D. -- Not reviewed

Cinemark IMAX

*The Hulk (PG-13)

Art house director Ang Lee enters the Marvel Comics-inspired action-hero genre with characteristic precision and visual flair, adding pop psychological analysis to a mix that turns out to be more like KingKong than Spiderman. The Hulk enters the field of blockbusting summer action-adventure with grace and style. David Banner (Nick Nolte) goes a little overboard with self-experimentation. He alters his own DNA then sires a son, Bruce, who transports his father's hubris and twisted genius into the next generation. Fast-forward 30 years. Bruce (Australian hunk Eric Bana) works alongside ex-girlfriend, Betty (Jennifer Connely). Connely is solid as the damsel-in-control, mastering the film talent of a silent, sweeping, single fat tear rolling pout of her unblinking eye. Bana is fine too, reserved, pent-up and buff. Nolte gives a one-man freak show that blows the mad scientist genre right of the map. The Hulk offers visual pizazz, enough technical wizardry, and enough cinematic beauty to overcome this shortfall. --Kathryn Eastburn

Tinseltown, Cinemark 16, Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15

India: Kingdom of the Tiger (NR) (large format for IMAX)

A National Wildlife Federation presentation, this new IMAX film focuses on the plight of the Bengal tiger, and retells the true story of British hunter and wildlife conservationist, Edward James Corbett, who lived most of his life in India. -- Not reviewed

Cinemark IMAX

*The Italian Job (PG-13)

The latest in a line of mediocre heist flicks, The Italian Job, to its credit, stars a cast of criminals you could actually bring home to mom. They even drive fuel-efficient European minis. Charlie Croker (Mark Wahlberg) leads a team composed of tech savvy experts Left Ear (Mos Def), a hacker extraordinnaire (Seth Greene) and Handsome Rob (Jason Statham). Charlize Theron is the requisite chick on hand. Like most heist films, the planning stage is the most satisfying. However there's no tension in the film beyond the question: Will they pull it of? The Italian Job is abetted by a graceful camera, and the techno trance music pulls the rest of the load. This is not a bad ride, but if you remember anything about it by the time you get home from the multiplex, let me know. --John Dicker

Tinseltown, Cinemark 16

Legally Blonde 2: Red, White, and Blonde (PG-13)

Attorney Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) takes her Beverly Hills attitude to Washington. Sally Fields plays the lobbied Congresswoman. Lots of pink, and limp-wristed posing. --Not reviewed

Tinseltown, Cinemark 16, Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15

*The Matrix Reloaded (R)

Neo (Keanu Reeves) exhibits fresh powers in Matrix Reloaded. Since the first film, he has switched from confused Matrix slave into a Superman-styled messianic protagonist with a heightened love for S&M warrior priestess Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss). What's at stake, essentially, in Matrix Reloaded -- besides the question of whether Neo and Trinity can lead humanity if indeed that is all that exists outside the Matrix -- is a symbolic capacity for original or individual thought. -- Cole Smithey

Cinemark IMAX, Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15

*Nowhere in Africa (R)

Winner of this year's Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, director-screenwriter Caroline Link's Nowhere in Africa is a story of exile, class, race, and family struggle writ large. With an apparent prescient notion of the anti-Semitism about to ravage his homeland patriarch, Walter (Merab Ninidze), flees to a farm in Kenya and waits for his family. Wife, Jettel (Julianne Kohler) reluctantly packs up daughter Regina (Lea Kurka) and the good china. Nowhere in Africa explores familiar territory, but also ventures into a few taboo corners, exposing, for instance, the inherent racial snobbery of these exiled Jews and the complications of infidelity. The Masai servant Uwuor (Sidede Onyulo) is the film's centerpiece, an immovable pillar who quietly observes and absorbs Jettel's condescension, Lea Kurka and Karoline Eckertz, as the child and teenage Regina, respectively, are remarkably expressive in the role of the malleable youth who absorbs everything around her. Snarky critics have dismissed Nowhere in Africa for meeting all the expected qualifications of a Best Foreign Language Film-- exotic setting, marital intrigue, good natured natives and snooty foreigners. All of these things are there, and the filmmakers are to be congratulated for not turning them into film cliches. --Kathryn Eastburn

Kimball's Twin Peak

Rugrats Go Wild (PG)

Two of Nickolodeon's most popular cartoons come together when the Rugrats meet the Wild Thornberrys in this fun, exotic adventure ride. Featuring the voices of Tim Curry, LL Cool J, and Bruce Willis. --Not Reviewed


Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas (PG)

An all star cast voices the latest animated flick from Dreamworks. Brad Pitt stars as the voice of Sinbad, while Michelle Pfieffer is his nemesis. Joseph Fiennes and Catherine Zeta-Jones also star. --Not reviewed

Tinseltown, Cinemark 16, Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (R)

Basically a rehashing of the plot of Terminator 2, but the antagonist is a sexy lady robot that can put her legs behind her head--Not reviwed

Tinseltown, Cinemark 16, Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Kimball's Twin Peak

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