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Staff **1/2 Tender, well-paced, an acting fest.Skip to next paragraph
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Sex/Nudity: 1 instance innuendo. Violence: 1 scene with child beating. Profanity: 42 expressions. Drugs: 20 scenes with drinking, smoking.
Director: Alan Taylor. With Ian Holm, Iben Hjejle, Tim McInnerny, Tom Watson. (107 min.)
Staff ***1/2 Napoleon and his retinue on St. Helena Island conspire to spring him from exile by having him trade places with a look-alike deckhand. Once in Paris he will reveal himself, depose the king, and again rule France. Trouble is, no one there recognizes him, and hardly anyone wants the little emperor back. Holm is superb as the erstwhile ruler forced to live as an ordinary citizen under the roof of a patient widow who needs a battle plan to rescue her melon business. Low-key comedy drama by director Taylor features excellent ensemble acting; beautiful, authentic-looking locations; and a delightful score. By M.K. Terrell
Sex/Nudity: 1 scene implied sex. Violence: 1 mild scene. Profanity: 2 mild expressions. Drugs: 3 scenes with smoking; 7 with drinking.
Director: Zacharias Kunuk. With Natar Ungalaaq, Sylvia Ivalu, Peter-Henry Arnatsiaq. (172 min.)
Sterritt *** The adventures of an Inuit nomad over 20 years, starting with a mysterious event during his childhood and then detailing his feud with a rival over a woman they both love. There's as much unbridled passion and violent conflict as melodrama fans could ask for. You feel the power of the Arctic setting in each scene, from frantic chases to intimate conversations. The story's refusal to draw solid lines between "good" and "evil" characters shows striking sophistication.
Staff *** Captivating, revealing, spare, real.
Sex/Nudity: 8 scenes, mostly innuendo, 2 with nudity. Violence: 12 scenes, including a rape. Profanity: 4 expressions. Drugs: Nothing explicit.
Director: Tuck Tucker. With Spencer Klein, Craig Bartlett, Christopher Lloyd, Jennifer Jason Leigh. (72 min.)
Staff ** Arnold and his hip friend Gerald try to stop the corporate Goliath Scheck from tearing down their neighborhood to build a shopping mall. With the help of an enigmatic stranger and a secret agent-like comrade, the buddies search for a lost document that would protect their historical community. Sketches from films like "Men in Black," "The Incredible Hulk," and "The Shawshank Redemption" are amusingly woven into subplots in this adaptation of the Nickelodeon TV series. The ending is jovial, but the storyline is far-fetched and the dialogue is hackneyed. Wait to see 'Hey Arnold!' on video. By Chase Clements (age 13)
Sex/Nudity: None. Violence: 6 scenes cartoonish violence, 3 with blood. Profanity: None. Drugs: None.
Directors: Chris Sanders, Dean DeBlois. With voices of Daveigh Chase, Tia Carrere. (85 min.)
Sterritt *** Lilo is a bratty Hawaiian girl whose dysfunctional family gets worse and then predictably heals after she befriends Stitch, a bratty genetic experiment who travels to Earth from a distant planet. Kids will love the fantasy and adventure of this cleverly written animation, and grownups will appreciate its whimsical humor. All this plus six Elvis Presley songs on the soundtrack!
Staff **1/2 Chaotic, adventurous, endearing.
Sex/Nudity: None. Violence: 15 scenes cartoonish violence. Profanity: None. Drugs: 1 scene with alcohol.
Director: Nicole Holofcener. With Catherine Keener, Brenda Blethyn, Emily Mortimer. (89 min.)
Staff *** What is most lovely and amazing about this story of a family of confused women is director Holofcener's wit, timing, and affection for her highly flawed characters. The white mother (Blethyn) of two grown daughters (Keener and Mortimer) has adopted an 8-year-old African-American girl who is beginning to show signs of the family obsession with looks. Her oldest sister is even jealous of the child, but when a health crisis arises with the mom, the women rally, and it becomes evident how they keep each other in balance. Some nudity, adult situations, and rough language. By M.S. Mason