Movie Guide

New in theaters

Lonesome Jim (R)

Director: Steve Buscemi. With Casey Affleck, Liv Tyler, Seymour Cassel. (91 min.)

Steve Buscemi, with his hooded, hound-dog eyes and perpetual slouch, is one of my favorite actors. No one has ever been more lyrically lethargic than he was in "Ghost World." As a director, he tries to explore similar low-key terrain, but his latest effort, "Lonesome Jim," is mostly a snooze. Maybe if Buscemi himself had starred in it things would have turned out better. But instead we have Casey Affleck in the Buscemi role, playing a hapless writer who returns home to rural Indiana and the dysfunctional family he had best left behind. Affleck is simply too clean-cut for the role. Grade: C+

Game 6 (R)

Director: Michael Hoffman. With Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr. (87 min.)

Michael Keaton plays Nicky Rogan, a New York dramatist who has a new show opening on Broadway the same night as the sixth game of the 1986 World Series featuring his beloved Boston Red Sox. The fact that Nicky is a die-hard Red Sox fan despite living his whole life in New York is only one of the many quirks in his character. In the course of the evening in which the film takes place, we also learn a lot about his wife's divorce action, his daughter's snippiness, and the temperament of New York cabbies (not a lot new to learn there). Don De Lillo wrote the screenplay, but his usual novelistic postmodernism is kept at bay. The film is meandering and highly uneven, but Robert Downey Jr. is truly oddball as a venomous drama critic, and watching that ball once again roll through Bill Buckner's legs is torture (for Red Sox fans anyway). Grade: B-

Sex/Nudity: 5 scenes of innuendo or implied sex.Violence: 2 instances. Profanity: 11 instances, including 4 harsh. Drugs/Alcohol/Tobacco: 7 scenes with smoking and/or drinking.

Still in Release
Thank You for Smoking (R)

Director: Jason Reitman. With Aaron Eckhart, William H. Macy. (92 min.)

As Nick Naylor, the chief lobbyist for Big Tobacco, Aaron Eckhart loves being hated - it means he's doing his job. Naylor's goal is to fight off a senator's proposal to affix a skull and crossbones on every cigarette pack. The film is snarky and enjoyable, but it could have been a ferocious black comedy. No Thank You For Playing It Safe. Grade: B

V for Vendetta (R)

Director: James McTeigue. With Natalie Portman, Hugo Weaving. (212 min.)

Hugo Weaving plays V, a masked vigilante aiming to overthrow the fascist government of futuristic Britain. He enlists Evey (Portman) in his cause. The filmmakers have been careful to say the movie doesn't endorse mayhem and points no fingers in any political direction. But the contemporary references, which include US involvement in Iraq, are inescapable. Grade: B

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