Vol. LXIV, No. 10
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Alice in Wonderland (PG for fantasy, action, violence, scary images, and smoking). Tim Burton directs this animated sequel to the Lewis Carroll children’s classic revolving around now 19 year-old Alice’s (Mia Wasikowska) return to the whimsical kingdom for a reunion with the White Rabbit (Michael Sheen) and other childhood friends, and to end the Red Queen’s (Helena Bonham Carter) reign of terror. Ensemble voice cast includes Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Alan Rickman, Christopher Lee, and Crispin Glover.
Avatar (PG-13 for sensuality, profanity, smoking, and intense epic battle sequences). James Cameron’s long-awaited science fiction thriller, revolving around a paraplegic ex-Marine (Sam Worthington) torn between loyalty to the corporate employer that sent him to extract rare minerals from a remote planet and his concern for the welfare of the locals, especially the attractive humanoid (Zoe Saldana) who turns his head. Cast includes Michelle Rodriguez, Sigourney Weaver, Laz Alonso, CCH Pounder, and Giovanni Ribisi.
Brooklyn’s Finest (R for nudity, graphic sexuality, pervasive profanity, drug use, and gory violence). Gritty, NYC crime saga, directed by Antoine Fuqua, about three NYPD cops (Don Cheadle, Richard Gere, and Ethan Hawke) stationed in three different outer boroughs whose paths cross serendipitously while working the same case. With Wesley Snipes, Ellen Barkin, Will Patton, and Vincent D’Onofrio.
Cop Out (R for pervasive profanity, sexual references, violence, and brief sexuality). Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan star in this madcap comedy directed by Kevin Smith about a couple of NYPD detectives who take the law into their own hands in order to retrieve a priceless baseball card from a merciless memorabilia obsessed mobster. Cast includes Seann William Scott, Ana de la Reguera, Fred Armisen, Adam Brody, Michelle Trachtenberg, Jason Lee, and Kevin Pollak.
The Crazies (R for profanity and graphic violence). Remake of George Romero’s horror film about a tight-knit Iowa community suddenly plagued by insanity and death after a mysterious toxin contaminates their town’s water supply. Starring Timothy Olyphant and Radha Mitchell.
Crazy Heart (R for profanity and brief sexuality). Jeff Bridges stars in this adaptation of Thomas Cobb’s bittersweet best seller about a washed-up womanizing alcoholic country crooner in search of salvation who gets a little help on the road to redemption from a supportive, investigative journalist (Maggie Gyllenhaal) who has a heart of gold.
Dear John (PG-13 for sensuality and violence). Channing Tatum stars in the title role of this bittersweet romance drama about a soldier who comes to regret reenlisting after 9-11 when the high school sweetheart (Amanda Seyfried), who promised to wait for him, instead sends him a letter informing him that she’s engaged to another guy (Henry Thomas). With Richard Jenkins, Luke Benward, and Scott Porter.
The Ghost Writer (PG-13 for profanity, sexuality, nudity, violence, and drug use). Roman Polanski directed this adaptation of Robert Harris’ best seller about a ghostwriter (Ewan McGregor) who uncovers secrets which put his life in jeopardy while doing research for the memoirs of a former British prime minister (Pierce Brosnan). With Olivia Williams, Kim Cattrall, Timothy Hutton, Jim Belushi, Tom Wilkinson, and Eli Wallach.
Green Zone (R for violence and profanity). Paul Greengrass directs this Iraq War thriller about a rogue Army Officer (Matt Damon) who relies on faulty intelligence while searching for Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction all across the desert. With Greg Kinnear, Amy Ryan, and Brendan Gleeson.
The Last Station (R for a scene with sexuality and nudity). Literary biopic about Leo Tolstoy’s (Christopher Plummer) later years, highlighting the hedonistic Russian author’s ambivalence about having taken vows of poverty and chastity. With Helen Mirren, Paul Giamatti, and James McAvoy.
Northface (Unrated). Historical drama recounting the ill-fated, 1936 expedition undertaken by four intrepid adventurers (Benno Furmann, Florian Lukas, Ulrich Tukur and Johanna Wokalek) attempting to be the first to scale the 3,000 foot-tall face of Eiger Mountain in the snow-capped Swiss Alps. (In German, Switze-Deutsch, French, and Italian with subtitles).
Our Family Wedding (PG-13 for brief profanity and sexuality). Cross-cultural comedy about a couple of feuding family patriarchs, one black (Forest Whitaker), one Mexican-American (Carlos Mencia), pressured to put aside their differences after two of their kids (Lance Gross and America Ferrara) announce their engagement. Ensemble cast includes Charlie Murphy, Fred Armisen, Lupe Ontiveros, Taye Diggs, and Warren Sapp.
Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief (PG for violence, peril, scary images, suggestive images, and mild epithets). Screen adaptation of Rick Riordan’s children’s best-seller about a troubled New York City teenager (Logan Lerman) who embarks on the odyssey of a lifetime to Mount Olympus after learning that he’s a Greek demigod and the son of Poseidon (Kevin McKidd). Cast includes Uma Thurman, Pierce Brosnan, Katherine Keener, Rosario Dawson, and Joe Pantoliano.
Remember Me (PG-13 for violence, sexuality, profanity, and smoking). Romance drama about a grieving young rebel’s (Robert Pattinson), struggling to recover from his brother’s suicide, who finds himself falling for the supportive beauty (Emilie de Ravin) whose shoulder he leans on. With Pierce Brosnan, Chris Cooper, Lena Olin and Martha Plimpton.
She’s Out of My League (R for profanity and sexuality). Romantic comedy about an Average Joe (Jay Baruchel) working as an airport security guard whose own insecurities threaten to doom his new relationship with the gorgeous girl of his dreams (Alice Eve) even before it has a chance to blossom.
Shutter Island (R for profanity, nudity, and disturbing violence). Martin Scorcese directed this adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s thriller, set in 1954, about a U.S. Marshal (Leonardo DiCaprio) with a new partner (Mark Ruffalo) sent to investigate the escape of a murderer (Emily Mortimer) from a hospital for the criminally-insane located on a remote island. Cast includes Ben Kingsley, Michelle Williams, Max von Sydow, Patricia Clarkson, and Jackie Earle Haley.
A Single Man (Unrated). Bittersweet drama, based on Christopher Isherwood’s 1964 novel of the same name, about a suicidal college professor (Colin Firth) who leans on the shoulders of a friend (Julianne Moore) and one of his students (Nicholas Hoult) while trying to cope with the death of his lifemate (Matthew Goode) who was killed in a car crash.
The Tooth Fairy (PG for mild epithets, crude humor, and sports action). Dwayne, ‘The Rock,’ Johnson stars in the title role of this family comedy about a hockey player famous for knocking out opponents’ teeth who gets a big lesson about what’s really important in life after being sentenced to a week of hard labor as the Tooth Fairy. Cast includes Abigail Breslin, Ashley Judd, Julie Andrews, and Billy Crystal.
Valentine’s Day (PG-13 for sexuality and brief nudity). Garry Marshall (Pretty Woman) directed this serendipitously interlocking series of romantic vignettes that unfold over the course of one very eventful holiday in Los Angeles during which couples confront a variety of relationship issues ranging from infidelity, to a teen crush, to loneliness, to coming out of the closet. Cast includes Bradley Cooper, Jessica Alba, Jamie Foxx, Julia Roberts, Anne Hathaway, Queen Latifah, Jennifer Garner, Jessica Biel, Ashton Kutcher, George Lopez, Kathy Bates, Topher Grace, Emma Roberts, and Grammy Award-winner Taylor Swift.
The White Ribbon (R for disturbing violence and sexuality). Flashback film, set in a tiny village in northern Germany in 1913 where some strange goings-on appear to be a form of ritualistic punishment being doled out by a malevolent force. In German, Italian, Polish, and Latin with subtitles.
The Wolfman (R for gore and graphic horror violence). Benicio Del Toro takes on the title role in this revival of the horror classic as a brooding British aristocrat living in America who is lured back to his ancestral homeland only to be transformed into a primal beast whenever the moon is full in accordance with a family curse. With Anthony Hopkins, Emily Blunt, Hugo Weaving, and Geraldine Chaplin.
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