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Movie Guide

May 2, 2003



NEW RELEASES
Afghan Stories (Not rated)

Director: Taran Davies. With families in New York and Afghanistan. (61 min.)

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Sterritt *** A visit with Afghan men, women, and children in the wake of Sept. 11, probing views of everything from the Soviet invasion of 1979 to problems with poverty today. The documentary makes up in humane values what it lacks in sociological depth. In English, Pashto, and Turkmen with English subtitles.

Blue Car (R)

Director: Karen Moncrieff. With Agnes Bruckner, David Strathairn, Margaret Colin, Frances Fisher. (87 min.)

Sterritt *** See full review, page 15.

The Dancer Upstairs (R)

Director: John Malkovich. With Javier Bardem, Laura Morante, Juan Diego Botto, Oliver Cotton. (135 min.)

Sterritt ** See full review, page 15.

The Lizzie McGuire Movie (PG)

Director: Jim Fall. With Hilary Duff, Adam Lamberg, Alex Borstein, Clayton Snyder. (90 min.)

Sterritt *** The popular TV character heads for Rome with a gaggle of classmates and a bossy chaperon, looking for adventure and finding more than she bargained for. The action is light and lively all the way, poking inventive fun at everything from nosy little brothers to clueless hotel managers and romantic Romans who aren't as glamorous as they claim to be. Highly recommended.

Owning Mahowny (R)

Director: Richard Kwietniowski. With Philip Seymour Hoffman, Minnie Driver, John Hurt. (104 min.)

Sterritt **** See full review, page 15.

X2: X-Men United (PG-13)

Director: Bryan Singer. With Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Halle Berry. (134 min.)

Staff **1/2See full review, page 15.

CURRENTLY IN RELEASE
A Mighty Wind (PG-13)

Director: Christopher Guest. With Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Bob Balaban, Parker Posey. (87 min.)

Sterritt *** Guest follows his amusing "Waiting for Guffman" and "Best in Show" with yet another faux documentary, focusing on folkies from the '60s era of sentimental ballads and lusty protest songs. The parody would be more memorable if it satirized a broader section of the folk-music scene instead of limiting itself to commercialized acts of the Kingston Trio and Peter, Paul & Mary ilk. But it is as accurate as it is funny.

Staff *** Quirky, witty, well-acted.

Sex/Nudity: 7 scenes with innuendo. Violence: None. Profanity: None. Drugs: 2 drinking scenes.

Anger Management (PG-13)

Director: Peter Segal. With Jack Nicholson, Adam Sandler, Marisa Tomei, Heather Graham. (100 min.)

Sterritt *** A businessman (Sandler) with an anger problem gets sentenced to live-in therapy sessions with an eccentric shrink (Nicholson). The comedy is uneven and sometimes crude, but it's worth seeing for Sandler's minimalist acting and for a few very funny scenes. Nicholson also is fine when he isn't overplaying his character's shenanigans.

Staff **1/2 Promising start, too slapstick, predictable.

Sex/Nudity: Innuendo throughout; heavy kissing between women. Violence: 15 scenes of violence, mostly fights. Profanity: 23 harsh profanities. Drugs: 14 scenes with drinking and smoking.

Bulletproof Monk (PG-13)

Director: Paul Hunter. With Chow Yun-Fat, Seann William Scott, Jamie King. (103 min.)

Staff **1/2 In Tibet in 1943, the "Monk Without a Name" (Yun-Fat) becomes the protector of a sacred scroll that will make its reader ruler of the world. Naturally, the Nazis want it. Sixty years later the monk comes to the US - Nazis still in pursuit - to find a successor. What he finds is a kung-fu loving pickpocket (Scott) and a mysterious girl (King). The mix of martial arts, super-hero comic book, and Eastern philosophy doesn't really come together, but it moves quickly. By M.K. Terrell

Staff *1/2 Flat, corny, jumpy.

Sex/Nudity: 3 scenes of innuendo. Violence: 20 scenes, including kung-fu battles. Profanity: 11 profanities. Drugs: 3 scenes of drinking, smoking.

Chasing Papi (PG)

Director: Linda Mendoza. With Roselyn Sanchez, Sofia Vergara, Jaci Velasquez. (80 min.)

Staff **1/2 Good-looking Papi (Verastegui) can't resist acquiring new girlfriends as business takes him around the US. Now he loves three women - each in a different city. When they all decide to visit him in L.A., everyone gets a big surprise. This romp has the innocence and pace of a '30s screwball comedy. By M.K. Terrell

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