(Page 2 of 3)
Staff ***1/2"A Beautiful Mind" meets "The Longest Day" as a brilliant mathematician leads a team of British scientists desperately trying to break the Nazi's enigma code and stop their U-boats before they cut off the North Atlantic shipping routes and win the war. But the mathematician's sanity is close to breaking: Is the beautiful blonde he's in love with a spy? And is the dapper British secret agent shadowing him (played with his usual delightful elegance by Northam) a friend or foe? There's romance and suspense aplenty before several puzzles are solved and the war won. By Gregory M. LambSkip to next paragraph
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
Staff *** Intelligent thriller, riveting, beautiful scenery, multi-faceted.
Sex/Nudity: 1 sex scene with partial nudity. Violence: 9 scenes, a few of mass graves, but mostly not graphic. Profanity: 13 harsh expressions. Drugs: 26 scenes with smoking and drinking.
Director: Woody Allen. With Allen, Téa Leoni, Mark Rydell, George Hamilton, Debra Messing. (114 min.)
Sterritt *** Allen plays a once-lauded film director who tries for a comeback via a project bankrolled by the Hollywood exec his exwife dumped him for; then his subconscious goes haywire, rendering him temporarily blind, and since he can't reveal this secret, he has to put on an act and pretend he knows what's in front of the camera. This cheerfully absurd comedy isn't brilliantly written, but it takes many amusing shots at the filmmaking scene.
Sex/Nudity: 2 instances innuendo. Violence: 2 mild scenes.Profanity: 4 mild expressions. Drugs: 10 scenes of drinking and smoking.
Director: Eric Rohmer. With Lucy Russell, Jean-Claude Dreyfus, Francois Marthouret, Caroline Morin. (129 min.)
Sterritt **** A courtly account of the skittish friendship between an Englishwoman living in France during the French Revolution and a curmudgeonly French aristocrat who confronts his tumultuous age with an unsteady set of divided loyalties. An old master with young ideas, Rohmer shot the movie with digital video, lending a sense of exquisitely crafted artifice that enhances the tale's historical atmosphere. It's deliciously acted, too. Originally titled "L'Anglaise et le duc." In French with English subtitles.
Director: Stephen Herek. With Angelina Jolie, Edward Burns, Stockard Channing. (103 min.)
Sterritt ** An ambitious TV newswoman takes a fresh look at life and love after a sidewalk psychic tells her she has a week to live. This slickly produced romantic comedy takes its creaky premise down the most predictable, sentimental pathways it can find. If the heroine really had seven days left, she wouldn't waste it watching stuff like this.
Sex/Nudity: 9 instances, including innuendo and 2 scenes implied sex. Violence: 1 shooting scene. Profanity: 13 expressions. Drugs: 13 scenes with drinking and smoking.
Director: Barbet Schroeder. With Sandra Bullock, Ryan Gosling, Michael Pitt, Ben Chaplin.
Staff ** Bullock stars as a brilliant, wise-cracking crime-scene investigator whose own dark past is a mystery in itself. She quickly figures out who has committed a horrifying crime (shown with lingering shots of the corpse), but can she prove it? The murderers are daring her to outwit them. Gosling and Pitt shine as her troubled-teen suspects, and Chaplin is fine as a low-key partner and potential love interest. Some entertaining plot twists ensue, but it's a must-see only for Bullock fans. By Gregory M. Lamb
Sex/Nudity: 2 sex scenes, 1 scene with sounds of TV pornography (unseen). No nudity. Violence: 16 scenes, including some with severed body parts. Profanity: 33 expressions. Drugs: At least 16 scenes with alcohol and smoking.
Director: Ismail Merchant. With Aasif Mandvi, Om Puri, Ayesha Dharker, Zohra Segal. (117 min.)
Sterritt **** A little knowledge can be a wonderful thing, or so it seems to the hero of this delightful comedy-drama. He's an Indian man living in Trinidad, where his smattering of book learning brings him enough local prestige to become first a masseur and healer, then a small-time book writer, and then an aspiring politician although each step up the ladder of success doesn't necessarily bring more of the personal happiness he's always in search of. Merchant usually works as the producing half of the Merchant Ivory filmmaking team, but his skills as a director have grown by leaps and bounds. This delicious fable reflects his great love of language, his delicate visual sense, and his ability to make you think and laugh out loud, often at the very same time.