Vol. LXIII, No. 7
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Confessions of a Shopaholic (PG for mature themes and mild epithets). Isla Fisher stars in the title role of this family comedy based on Sophie Kinsella’s best seller of the same name about a financial advice columnist who finds herself swimming in debt due to her addiction to the latest fashion. Cast includes Hugh Dancy, Joan Cusack, John Goodman, and Krysten Ritter.
Coraline (PG for mature themes, scary images, suggestive humor, and mild epithets). Animated fantasy about an 11-year-old girl (Dakota Fanning) who unlocks a secret door in her family’s new home only to discover an eerily similar alternate version of her own life. Voice cast includes Teri Hatcher and John Hodgman as her parents, plus Keith David and Ian McShane.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (PG-13 for profanity, sexuality, smoking, and brief war violence). Brad Pitt shares the title role with several other actors in David Fincher’s adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story about a man born old who gradually grows younger over the course of his life. Cast includes Cate Blanchett, Tilda Swinton, Taraji P. Henson, and Elle Fanning.
Fired Up (PG-13 for profanity, sexuality, partying, partial nudity, and pervasive crude humor). Teen comedy about a couple of high school’s football stars (Eric Christian Olsen and Nicholas D’Agosto) who hatch a plan to spend the summer at a camp filled with gorgeous girls by quitting the team to try out for the cheerleading squad instead. Cast includes Sarah Roemer, Philip Baker Hall, Molly Sims, and Smith Cho.
Friday the 13th (R for gory violence, graphic sexuality, profanity, and drug use). Remake of the horror classic about a psycho (Derek Mears) whose killing spree ruins the weekend getaway of a group of young friends staying at a secluded lakeside camp located deep in the woods. Cast includes Amanda Righetti, Travis Van Winkle, Danielle Panabaker, Aaron Yoo, and America Olivio.
Frost/Nixon (R for profanity). Ron Howard directs this screen adaptation of the Tony winning Broadway play recounting the series of television interviews conducted by British talk show David Frost (Michael Sheen) with Richard Nixon (Frank Langella) in 1977, three years after the disgraced U.S. President resigned from office in the wake of the Watergate scandal. Supporting cast includes Toby Jones, Kevin Bacon, Oliver Platt, and Sam Rockwell.
Gran Torino (R for profanity, ethnic slurs, and violence). Clint Eastwood directed and co-stars in this drama about a recently widowed Korean war veteran who begrudgingly befriends his Asian-American next-door neighbor (Bee Vang) after the troubled teen tries to steal his classic muscle car. Cast includes Brian Haley, Christopher Carley, and John Carroll Lynch.
He’s Just Not That Into You (PG-13 for sexuality and brief profanity). Battle-of-the-sexes comedy based on the self-help best seller of the same name chronicles the misadventures of a variety of young couples in crisis. Cast includes Jennifer Aniston, Drew Barrymore, Ben Affleck, Scarlett Johansson, Jennifer Connelly, and Justin Long.
The International (R for violence and profanity). Action thriller about an Interpol agent (Clive Owen) who teams up with a Manhattan district attorney (Naomi Watts) to follow the money in a high-stakes chase around the globe to uncover corruption inside one of the world’s most powerful banks. With Armin Mueller-Stahl, Jay Villiers, and Ulrich Thomsen.
Madea Goes to Jail (PG-13 for violence, sexual situations, mature themes, and drug use). Tyler Perry’s back in drag for another madcap adventure which has the sassy, pistol-packing grandmother landing behind bars for anger management after leading police on a high-speed freeway chase. Ensemble cast includes Viola Davis, Derek Luke, Keisha Knight Pulliam, and David and Tamela J. Mann.
Milk (R for profanity, sexuality, and violence). Sean Penn plays Harvey Milk in this biopic about the gay San Francisco politician assassinated in 1978 by a Republican colleague (Josh Brolin) who successfully raised the “Twinkie defense” to beat the murder rap. Cast includes James Franco, Emile Hirsch, Alison Pill, and Diego Luna.
New in Town (PG-13 for brief profanity). Romantic comedy about a high-powered, big-city businesswoman (Renée Zellweger) who reevaluates her life’s priorities after falling for a local man (Harry Connick, Jr.) in the rural Minnesota community where she has been ordered to close down a company factory. Cast includes J.K. Simmons, Frances Conroy and Siobhan Fallon. In English and Spanish with subtitles.
Paul Blart: Mall Cop (PG for violence, suggestive material, crude humor, and mild epithets). Kevin James stars in the title role of this Christmas comedy about a mild-mannered security guard who saves the day when crooks disguised as Santa’s helpers take hostages at a suburban shopping mall in New Jersey. With Keir O’Donnell, Bobby Cannavale, and Raini Rodriguez.
The Pink Panther 2 (PG for suggestive humor, action, and mild epithets). Steve Martin reprises the title role as the bumbling Jacques Clouseau for a comic crime caper which has the hapless inspector traversing the globe in search of the international jewel thief who has purloined the priceless Pink Panther diamond. Cast includes Emily Mortimer, John Cleese, Aishwarya Rai, Jean Reno, Andy Garcia, and Alfred Molina.
Push (PG-13 for profanity, teen drinking, and intense violence). Science-fiction adventure, set in Hong Kong, about a group of psychic American expatriates who band together to elude the clutches of the top secret U.S. government agency seeking to bring them back to the States to put their powers to work for its own nefarious purposes. Cast includes Djimon Hounsou, Dakota Fanning, Camilla Belle, and Chris Evans.
The Reader (R for nudity and sexuality). Post-World War II drama about a young German law student (Ralph Fiennes), who encounters a former secret ex-lover (Kate Winslet), who is twice his age, while observing the Nazi war trials where she’s a defendant accused of committing a heinous crime against humanity.
Revolutionary Road (R for profanity, sexuality, and nudity). Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet reunite for this screen adaptation of Richard Yates’ best-seller, set in the fifties, about a married couple in crisis who move from Connecticut to Paris to escape suburbia while trying to revitalize their relationship.
Slumdog Millionaire (R for violence, profanity, and disturbing images). Romantic comedy, set in Mumbai, about an 18-yearold street urchin (Dev Patel) who becomes a TV contestant on India’s version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire not for the money but to win back the heart of the girl (Freida Pinto) of his dreams. In English and Hindi with subtitles.
Taken (PG-13 for profanity, violence, sexuality, disturbing themes, and drug references). International action thriller about a former CIA Agent (Liam Neeson) who comes to the rescue after his 17 year-old daughter (Maggie Grace) is kidnapped in Paris by brutal sex-traffickers. With Famke Janssen and Leland Orser. In French, Arabic, Albanian, and English.
Underworld: Rise of the Lycans (R for sexuality and graphic violence). Third installment in the horror series delves into the roots of the centuries-old feud between a race of aristocratic vampires ruled by an evil monarch (Bill Nighy) and their werewolf slaves led by a young rebel (Michael Sheen) with a lover (Rhona Mitra) hiding a big secret.
The Uninvited (PG-13 for violence, disturbing images, mature themes, profanity, sexuality, and teen drinking). Remake of Korean horror film revolving around the desperate efforts of two sisters (Emily Browning and Arielle Kebbel) to warn their father (David Strathairn) about his fiancée’s (Elizabeth Banks) sinister agenda after being visited by the ghost of their recently-deceased mother (Maya Massar).
The Wrestler (R for violence, nudity, sexuality, profanity, and drug use). Mickey Rourke plays the title role in this drama about a washed-up pro wrestler who comes out of retirement, despite suffering a heart attack, for one last match against his old nemesis (Ernest Miller). Supporting cast includes Marisa Tomei, Evan Rachel Wood, and Judah Friedlander.
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