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Staff ** When 11-year-old Beary Barrington learns he was adopted by humans, he leaves home to find more of "his kind," members of the long-disbanded Country Bears singing group. Arriving at Country Bears Hall, he finds it threatened by developers. What to do but reunite the band for a benefit concert. Slow stretches and careless editing weigh against wholesomeness and good songs. The clever credits sequence features Willie Nelson and others telling how The Country Bears influence their work. Based on the attraction at Disney's theme parks. By M.K. TerrellSkip to next paragraph
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Sex/Nudity: None. Violence: 4 mild scenes. Profanity: None. Drugs: None.
Director: Steven Soderbergh. With Julia Roberts, David Duchovny, Catherine Keener, Blair Underwood. (101 min.)
Sterritt ** Soderbergh tries a freewheeling movie experiment in this comedy-drama about people making a film and rehearsing a play; it takes place during 24 hours and unfolds in loosely strung scenes that often drift in different directions. The focus is on mercurial moods and emotions rather than logic-driven causes and effects. It's refreshingly different, even if it's meandering, low on energy, and too eager to be quirky at moments when a little old-fashioned storytelling would come in handy.
Staff *1/2 Self-centered, free-form, slow, irritating.
Sex/Nudity: 6 instances of sex; 8 scenes with innuendo. Violence: 1 suicide scene. Profanity: 55 expressions. Drugs: 7 scenes drinking, smoking.
Director: Kathryn Bigelow. With Harrison Ford, Liam Neeson, Peter Sarsgaard, Joss Ackland. (138 min.)
Staff *** The true story of a near nuclear meltdown aboard a cold-war era Soviet submarine might not seem likely engaging material for 21st-century American audiences. But history and geopolitics provide only a backdrop here. A fine corps of actors, led by Ford as the strong-willed captain and Neeson as his good-hearted executive officer, make this an uplifting tale of survival against a powerful new technology run amok. Bigelow deftly blends gripping action sequences with dramatic moments amid the leaks and groans of a fatally flawed ship. By Gregory M. Lamb
Staff **1/2 Gripping, sobering, realistic.
Sex/Nudity: 2 instances innuendo. Violence: 6 scenes, including disturbing scenes of radiation exposure. Profanity: 2 mild expressions. Drugs: At least 6 scenes with drinking and smoking.
Directors: Brett Morgen, Nanette Burstein. With Robert Evans, various Hollywood figures. (92 min.)
Sterritt ** Documentary about the active life and checkered career of small-time Hollywood actor and big-time Hollywood producer Robert Evans, based on his autobiography and narrated by the celebrity himself. Admirers will enjoy the inside dope on movies like "The Godfather" and "Rosemary's Baby," while detractors will zero in on his unsavory spell as a drug abuser. The overall effect is too self-worshipping to be of lasting interest. The guy sure isn't shy!
Director: Perry Andelin Blake. With Dana Carvey, Jennifer Esposito, James Brolin. (80 min.)
Staff **1/2 Twentysomething Pistachio Disguisey (Carvey) doesn't realize he's heir to a lineage of disguise masters because his father opted out and opened an Italian restaurant. An old enemy, kidnaps mom and dad, and Pistachio's long-lost grandpa shows up to teach him the disguise trade, and rescue them. Such is the flimsy framework for nonstop gags that overflow into the credits. It is not as funny as it could be, and none of it makes sense, especially Pistachio's ability to mimic any dialect but standard US English. But his versatility is astonishing. By M.K. Terrell
Sex/Nudity: 1 instance innuendo. Violence: 15 scenes, including slapping. Profanity: 1 mild expression. Drugs: 5 scenes of drinking and smoking.
Director: Barry Sonnenfeld. With Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Lara Flynn Boyle, Tony Shalhoub. (88 min.)
Sterritt ** Agent J needs Agent K to help him combat Serleena, a Victoria's Secret model who's really an insidious alien; but K has lost all memory of his top-secret career, and the high-tech gizmo they need to retrieve it is in the hands of a guy who's weird even by MIB standards. That's just the starting point of this moderately amusing sequel, which is best when it relies on dead-pan acting by the stars, worst when it drags in summer-movie stupidities like an incessantly talking dog.
Staff ** Nutty, obvious jokes, OK sequel.