FREEZE FRAMES

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A weekly update of film releases IN THE BLOOD - Documentary about big-game hunting, shot during an African safari conducted by filmmaker George Butler, who made the ``Pumping Iron'' movies about weightlifting. There's more emphasis on ``family values'' and ``preserving our heritage'' than on killing, but the film's clear purpose is to celebrate guns and the macho pleasures of stalking a prey. And we don't need more of that in the movies. (Not rated)

LOVE AT LARGE - Sardonic satire of the 1940s film noir style, with Tom Berenger as a gravel-voiced detective who spends the whole movie trailing the wrong man. Good performances, smart filmmaking. Yet the movie seems minor because there's nothing to it beneath its atmospheric surface. Directed by longtime independent filmmaker Alan Rudolph. (Rated R)

STRAPLESS - A mature, intelligent woman marries a man she knows little about, then worries that she's made a serious mistake. Other challenges include the behavior of her irresponsible sister and financial problems at the British hospital where she works. David Hare wrote and directed this mature, intelligent drama, which features luminous performances by Blair Brown as the heroine and Bruno Ganz as the mysterious gentleman who courts her. Some critics find the film's metaphors too obvious, but clarity and forthrightness are actually two of its main virtues. By any standard, this is one of the most smartly filmed and emotionally moving pictures in recent memory. (Rated R)

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