FREEZE FRAMES

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A weekly update of film releases

THE KILLER - A murderer dodges the law while trying to help a woman who was accidentally blinded by his gun. This violent Hong Kong thriller has more psychological depth than most of its kind, but ultimately seems like a pointless exercise in style. John Woo directed. (Not rated)

KORCZAK - Drama based on the true story of a Polish Jew who protected orphans in the Warsaw ghetto during the Nazi era. Although the movie has an inspiring subject and stunning photography by Robby M"uller, the near-legendary Polish filmmaker Andrzej Wajda never brings it convincingly to life. Agnieska Holland wrote the disappointing screenplay. (Not rated)

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POISON - Sexual violence is the theme of this three-story film about a mad scientist with a potion; a homosexual man in prison; and a boy who kills his abusive father. Suggested by works of French author Jean Genet, the movie is honest, ugly, and sometimes brutal in its treatment of provocative material. It also has moments of dark beauty, but rarely approaches the complexity of Genet's best writing. Written and directed by Todd Haynes. (Not rated)

TABU - The great German filmmaker F.W. Murnau collaborated with American documentarist Robert Flaherty on this poetic drama of love and destiny in Tahiti, where the picture was filmed. Originally released in 1931, it isn't the most exciting of masterpieces, but its newly restored print looks absolutely gorgeous, and it's exciting to have a complete version back in circulation after almost 60 years. (Not rated)

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