(Page 2 of 3)
Violence: Mild violence on the soccer field. Profanity: 7 instances of profanity.Skip to next paragraph
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
Director: Mort Nathan. With Cuba Gooding Jr., Vivica A. Fox, Horatio Sanz, Roselyn Sanchez. (93 min.)
Sterritt * Hoping for sexual adventures on a singles cruise, two woman-crazy guys find themselves on a ship full of gay men instead, plus a bevy of bikini models brought on board by a feeble plot twist. This boatload of clichés is strenuously unfunny. Switch your travel reservation to another theater!
Sex/Nudity: 23 sex scenes, including innuendo, seminudity. Violence: 6 scenes. Profanity: 56 expressions. Drugs: 13 scenes of drinking, smoking.
Director: Adam Shankman. With Steve Martin, Queen Latifah, Eugene Levy, Joan Plowright. (105 min.)
Sterritt * Likable white lawyer (Martin) meets earthy black exconvict (Latifah) who won't stop pestering him until he helps her clear her name. Parts of this boisterous comedy are in remarkably poor taste - a scene where Martin dudes himself up in ghetto-style gear - and the rest is just not funny. What's such a talented cast doing in this brain-dead farce?
Staff ** Slapstick, funny at times, racially tense.
Sex/Nudity: 6 scenes with innuendo, strong at times. Violence: 7 scenes, including fights. Profanity: 7 harsh expressions; 42 mild. Drugs: 13 scenes of drinking, smoking. 1 scene of drugs.
Director: Rob Marshall. With Renée Zellweger, Richard Gere, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Queen Latifah. (113 min.)
Sterritt ** Two women of the Roaring '20s land on death row after killing men who've wronged them, and their friendship turns to rivalry when they go after the same money-minded lawyer to defend them. The music is irresistible - who would have guessed Zellweger, Zeta-Jones, and Gere could hoof and croon with the best of them? But the story is a cynical take on serious human failings.
Staff ***1/2 Visual razzle-dazzle, strong acting.
Sex/Nudity: 1 sex scene; mild dance numbers. Violence: 6 scenes of mild violence. Profanity: 20 expressions. Drugs: 6 scenes of smoking, drinking.
Director: Lawrence Kasdan. With Morgan Freeman, Jason Lee, Tom Sizemore, Donnie Wahlberg. (131 min.)
Sterritt ** Four young men with a knack for mind-reading battle aliens in the New England woods. Also present is a macho military man who's supposed to stop the invasion but may be the loosest cannon of all. The main characters are compendiums of Gen-X clichés, and most of the cast is too unseasoned to transcend the silly screenplay.
Staff ** Odd, clichéd, gross.
Sex/Nudity: 4 instances of innuendo. Violence: 25 scenes, including burning aliens. Profanity: 52 expressions. Drugs: 6 scenes of heavy drinking.
Director: William Friedkin. With Tommy Lee Jones, Benicio Del Toro, Connie Nielsen, Jenna Boyd. (94 min.)
Sterritt * A former military teacher (Jones) pursues a "killing machine" (Del Toro) who learned his lessons all too well. The chief aim of this ham-fisted chase movie is to stage its story against as many Pacific Northwest backgrounds as possible. There's hardly a pause for breath. Or thought. Or anything besides fights, face-offs, and showdowns.
Staff **1/2 Predictable, gritty, good premise.
Sex/Nudity: None. Violence: 17 graphic scenes, including shootouts. Profanity: 13 expressions. Drugs: 3 scenes with drinking, smoking.
Director: Lisa Cholodenko. With Frances McDormand, Christian Bale, Kate Beckinsale. (103 min.)
Sterritt *** Fresh from medical school, a conscientious young man and his fiancée move into the southern California home of his mother, an aging flower child whose domicile does extra duty as recording studio for her young lover's rock band. The story doesn't ultimately live up to its technical polish, but it paints a vivid picture of emotional vibes emanating from the Hollywood Hills.
Director: Menno Meyjes. With John Cusack, Noah Taylor, Leelee Sobieski, Molly Parker. (106 min.)
Sterritt **** After World War I, a Jewish art dealer in Munich befriends an aspiring painter named Adolf Hitler, thinking he can distract the young man from his crazy political ideas by encouraging his creativity. This moodily filmed drama traces the roots of German fascism not only to the demented notions of the Nazis but to German culture in the early 1900s. It also explores fascism's cynical use of art and architecture to mesmerize a vulnerable society.