Director: Guy Ferland. With Romola Garai, Diego Luna, Sela Ward, Patrick Swayze. (86 min.)Skip to next paragraph
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Sterritt * A rich American girl learns love and dancing from a Latino boy during a family sojourn in Cuba just before the Castro regime takes over. At least the original "Dirty Dancing" had Jennifer Grey for Swayze to swing around. This belated "reimagining" is as beguiling as a dried-out palm tree.
Director: Mel Gibson. With Jim Caviezel, Monica Bellucci, Sergio Rubini, Maia Morgenstern. (127 min.)
Sterritt ** An excruciatingly violent reenactment of Jesus' crucifixion. Gibson pays morbid attention to every gory detail, as if the suffering of the earthly Jesus were of central importance for its own sake rather than a precondition of his triumph over death, which occupies only the last few seconds of the film's highly selective account. He also leaves the door open to anti-Semitic interpretations of the Jewish role in the death sentence, although Gibson has disavowed such interpretations himself. Technically, the picture is strong, thanks to Caleb Deschanel's expert camera work and Caviezel's relentlessly focused acting. In Aramaic, Hebrew, and Latin with English subtitles.
Directors: Elizabeth Holder, Xan Parker. With Louise Jones, Carol Warner Wilke, Umber Ahmad. (87 min.)
Sterritt *** Informative, engrossing documentary about women working in high-powered Wall Street business firms where men traditionally hold the reins. To its credit, the movie has as little patience for nonessential nonsense as the women it portrays.
Director: Philip Kaufman. With Ashley Judd, Samuel L. Jackson, Andy Garcia, David Strathairn. (97 min.)
Sterritt * See review at right.
Director: Charles S. Dutton. With Meg Ryan, Omar Epps, Tony Shalhoub, Charles S. Dutton. (111 min.)
Sterritt * A boxing drama loosely inspired by the career of manager Jackie Kallen, showing how she profits from faith in an untried fighter and calms a hyperactive ego in the process. Ryan puts pert charm into her role as a pioneering woman in an all-male world, supported by Epps as her two-fisted protégé and Dutton as a crusty old trainer. Too bad the screenplay is full of simplistic stereotypes and empty clichés.
Staff *** Modest, crowd-pleasing, believable fiction.
Sex/Nudity: 5 scenes, 4 of them innuendo. Violence: 10 scenes. Profanity: 65 instances, mostly mild. Drugs: 10 instances.
Director: Kevin Rodney Sullivan. With Ice Cube, Eve, Michael Ealy. (98 min.)
Staff **1/2 The crew from the original "Barbershop" comes back to cut hair, only this time a national chain tries to shut them down. Sullivan brings forth a narrative buzzing with energy and sharpness and the actors perform their lines with an earthy vigor, but the film's bare-boned script and mawkish ending keep it from achieving 'shear' brilliance. By Brad Rosenberg
Sex/Nudity: 9 scenes with innuendo. Violence: 5 scenes. Profanity: 77 instances. Drugs: 5 instances.
Directors: J. Mackye Gruber, Eric Bress. With Ashton Kutcher, Amy Smart, Eric Stoltz. (113 min.)
Sterritt * A troubled young man gradually learns he's been traveling back in time, inhabiting his body in earlier stages of his life and altering events in ways that befuddle him when he returns to a present changed in unexpected ways. A promising premise; too bad the screenplay is as confused as the hero.