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Movie Guide

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Sex/Nudity: 32 instances innuendo, nudity, implied sex. Violence: 11 scenes, including rape. Profanity: 28 strong expressions. Drugs: At least 14 scenes of drinking and smoking, including illegal drugs.

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Stolen Summer (PG)

Director: Pete Jones. With Aidan Quinn, Kevin Pollack, Brian Dennehy, Bonnie Hunt. (92 min.)

Staff **1/2 On a quest to emulate St. Paul and secure his entrance to heaven, the 8-year-old son of an Irish-American firefighter joyfully befriends the neighborhood rabbi and his boy, hoping to set one of them on a path to salvation. This heart-warming debut film of Jones, set in '70s Chicago, won the Project Greenlight screenplay contest in which there were more than 10,000 entrees. It's a bit contrived at times but clothes its message of tolerance with wit and sweetness. By M.K. Terrell

Sex/Nudity: 2 instances mild innuendo. Violence: 2 scenes, including a fire. Profanity: 16 mild expressions. Drugs: 10 scenes with drinking, smoking.

We Were Soldiers (R)

Director: Randall Wallace. With Mel Gibson, Madeleine Stowe, Greg Kinnear. (140 min.)

Sterritt * Gibson leads US soldiers through a blood-filled battle of the Vietnam war in this fact-based but cliché-riddled melodrama. The filmmakers take advantage of their 1965 setting to dish out guts-and-glory archetypes, ignoring the cynicism that welled up among US troops when they started questioning the war's moral and political basis later. How can so much money and star power add up to so little conviction?

Staff *** Grimly fascinating, horrific, square-jawed heroism.

Sex/Nudity: 1 scene implied sex. Violence: 14 battle sequences, some gory. Profanity: 22 strong expressions. Drugs: 10 scenes smoking, drinking.

Life as a House (R)

Director: Irwin Winkler. With Kevin Kline, Kristen Scott Thomas, Hayden Christiansen. (124 min.)

Staff *** This film has a predictable storyline, yet the telling is compelling, with fresh twists. A lonely, eccentric architect is diagnosed with terminal cancer. To atone for a lifetime of mistakes, he builds his dream home, enlisting his estranged and rebellious teenage son and the help of his ex-wife. Constructing the house becomes a metaphor for a life rebuilt. The lead actors give meaningful performances, and moments of delightful humor offset the drama. The subject matter, sexual content, and language probably make this film best suited for a mature audience. By Steven Savides

Staff *** Enriching, sad but inspiring, preachy.

Sex/Nudity: 9 scenes of sex and graphic innuendo. Violence: 2 scenes. Profanity: 31 harsh expressions. Drugs: 1 scene of alcohol, 4 scenes with cigarettes, 4 scenes with substance abuse.

Bread and Tulips (PG-13)

Director: Silvio Soldini. With Licia Maglietta, Bruno Ganz, Giuseppe Battiston, Antonio Catania. (104 min.)

Sterritt *** A new life blossoms for a 40-year-old Italian housewife when she misses a bus, gets separated from her husband and kids, and decides she'd rather explore the wonders of Venice – and the friendship of offbeat new acquaintances – than return to her routine of worn-out domesticity. Maglietta gives a magical performance in this lightweight but flavor-ful comedy. In Italian with English subtitles.