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Movie Picks

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Arthur and the Invisibles (PG)
A 10-year-old boy seeks help from the Minimoys, small elfin creatures who live in harmony with nature, to save his grandparent's home from a real estate developer. Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Babel (R)
At least one-fourth of Babel ranks among the year's finest pieces of filmmaking. The problem is the rest of the story isn't nearly as captivating. Portions of the intertwined stories seem to function strictly as ethnography, rather than fulfill their promise to illuminate how we are separated by continent, culture and language. Scott Renshaw

Chapel Hills 15, Tinseltown

Blood and Chocolate (R)
In this teenage werewolf flick, a young woman struggles between her love for a man and protecting her werewolf "pack" after a string of deaths threatens to expose them. Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15, Tinseltown

Blood Diamond (R)
Two very different African men, one a mercenary (Leonardo DiCaprio) and the other a Mende fisherman (Djimon Hounsou), band together to retrieve a rare diamond. Not reviewed

Tinseltown

*Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (R)

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Catch and Release (PG-13)
Jennifer Garner plays a woman trying to reclaim her life after the death of her fianc and the discovery of secrets he kept from her. Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Charlotte's Web (PG)
Based on the children's book, this film features Wilbur the pig and his friend Charlotte, a spider, who devises a plan to keep her friend off the dinner table. Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Children of Men (R)
In this film's dystopian vision of the future, women can no longer have children and the world is mourning the loss of its youngest inhabitant, an 18-year-old. It's a gritty, grainy and dirty flick, so magnificently thought-provoking and entertaining that few people will walk away unmoved. Jeff Sneider

Tinseltown

Code Name: The Cleaner (PG-13)

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Deep Sea 3D (G)
A 3-D journey beneath the sea narrated by Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet featuring the planet's most unique and colorful ocean life. Not reviewed

Cinemark 16 IMAX

Dj Vu (PG-13)

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*The Departed (R)
An undercover man (Leonardo DiCaprio) threatens to expose police officer Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon), who has secret ties to a local crime boss (Jack Nicholson). Scott Renshaw

Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Dreamgirls (PG-13)
Dreamgirls works best as an old-fashioned backstage melodrama, full of strong performances and big production values. On a certain level, it may feel like only a minor variation on the hundreds of other weepies about the perils of reaching for fame but a story like this can soar with a score. Scott Renshaw

Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Epic Movie (PG-13)
This comedy from Scary Movie writers Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer offers a satirical take on the latest box-office hits. Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Eragon (PG)
A boy finds a dragon's egg, an event that launches him on an adventure to protect his homeland against a villainous king. Not reviewed

Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Flags of Our Fathers (R)

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Flushed Away (PG)

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Freedom Writers (PG-13)
In a story based on real events, Hilary Swank plays a teacher in a tough classroom who inspires her pupils to become more. Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

The Good Shepherd (R)
Matt Damon stars as a Yale student recruited by the CIA during World War II to monitor a professor suspected of having Nazi ties, in a disappointing effort from director/actor Robert De Niro. Jeff Sneider

Cinemark 16, Picture Show

Happily N'Ever After (PG)
A group of evil characters plots to take over Fairy Tale Land, but Ella (Sarah Michelle Gellar) recognizes the threat and leads the resistance in this animated feature. Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15, Tinseltown

The Hitcher (R)
A college couple picks up a hitchhiker on their way to spring break, and their road trip is transformed into a nightmare in this remake of a 1986 horror flick. Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

The Holiday (PG-13)

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*Letters from Iwo Jima (R)
The film is almost a too-obvious attempt at we're-all-the-same-under-the-skin revisionist history. The film's title comes from the notes home that are narrated throughout, dealing with universal matters such as missing loved ones and trying to do the right thing. Fortunately, Director Clint Eastwood and screenwriter Iris Yamashita have more to say. Scott Renshaw

Tinseltown

Night at the Museum (PG)
Trouble erupts at a natural history museum when a night watchman unknowingly triggers an ancient curse that causes the museum's exhibits to come to life. Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Cinemark 16 IMAX, Tinseltown

Notes on a Scandal (R)
Judi Dench might give yet another brilliant performance, and Cate Blanchett might be equally praiseworthy in this tale of repressed longing warped into mental instability, but I can't know for sure because I spent the entire movie preoccupied with one question: What would it take to get Philip Glass to never ever write another movie score? Scott Renshaw

Kimball's Twin Peak

Open Season (PG)

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*The Painted Veil (R)
Edward Norton and Naomi Watts produced and star in this smart adaptation of a Somerset Maugham novel. A lushly executed romantic drama of 1920s China and the cholera epidemic, The Painted Veil is unabashedly old-fashioned, shot through with the bite of human cruelty and the redeeming power of hard-earned love. Kathryn Eastburn

Kimball's Twin Peak

Pan's Labyrinth (R)
A young girl uses an imaginary world to cope with the difficult reality of moving to rural Spain with her pregnant mother and new stepfather after World War II. Not reviewed

Kimball's Twin Peak, Tinseltown

*The Pursuit of Happyness (PG-13)
Will Smith stars as a down-on-his-luck salesman attempting an ambitious career change when his wife leaves him and their 5-year-old son (played by Smith's real-life son). Call it corny, but it's an old-school human drama that just works. Scott Renshaw

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*The Queen (PG-13)
A shoo-in for the Best Actress Oscar (Helen Mirren), and deserving of many others, The Queen is a surprisingly arch, moving, unsentimental and often funny treatment of the days following the death of Princess Diana, the response of the British royal family and the enormous weight of the monarchy on mere mortals not to mention a candid glimpse of Tony Blair's decidedly untidy living room. Kathryn Eastburn

Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause (G)

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Smokin' Aces (R)
A sleazy Las Vegas magician becomes a target after he turns FBI informant and a mafia boss puts a contract out on him. Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Stomp the Yard (PG-13)
After his brother dies, a 19-year-old street dancer is sent to an Atlanta university, where two groups vie for his dance moves to win a national competition. Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Stranger than Fiction (PG-13)

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Unaccompanied Minors (PG)

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We Are Marshall (PG)
Based on a true story, the film follows the Marshall University football team and its coach as they struggle to recover and rebuild after a tragic plane crash claims the lives of players and fans. Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15

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