Movie Picks 

Films recommended by our reviewers are indicated by an *.

Films that do not appear here have not yet been screened by our reviewers.

The Animal (PG-13)
As I watched The Animal, what kept coming to mind was the tired phrase: "the dumbing down of America." Rob Schneider plays a loser police whose life turns around when he's saved from a car wreck by a mad scientist who pieces his body back together with parts made from animal DNA. Suddenly, he's got new animalistic abilities as a secret weapon and he's a real standout guy. Moronic and uninspired, this film has all the comedic value of a monkey in a ballet dress juggling beach balls. See full review. -- Patton Dodd

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Angel Eyes (R)
So little actually happens in this sometimes mesmerizing, mostly boring little movie that it's hard to recall many specific scenes. The viewer waits through one gorgeous scenario after another -- Jennifer Lopez as tough cop Sharon reclining alone on her bed late at night, strapped into a bulletproof vest, Sharon and love interest Catch swimming beneath the moonlight in a glittering watering hole -- hoping for a plot to unfold. But there is no plot, except the eventual revelation that the two have met before -- no beginning, no middle and a hokey ending. Lopez and Jim Caviezel as Catch are both so attractive that the camera-lingering aspects of the film are quite pleasant, but a missing plot essentially means death to a movie that dwells in the land of gritty reality. See full review. -- KCE


*Blow (R)
Part social portrait and part biopic, Blow plays like an essential predecessor to Steven Soderbergh's Traffic. Johnny Depp gives a spellbindingly naturalistic performance as George Jung, the real-life main character whose alliance with the Colombian cocaine cartels during the '70s and '80s landed him behind bars for drug trafficking. Director Ted Demme puts a sympathetic face on an intensely individualistic man whose propensities for crime brought him immense riches but eventually cost him everything he cared about. See full review. -- Cole Smithey

Silver Cinemas

*Bridget Jones's Diary (R)
Bridget Jones's Diary, the movie, leaves most of the funny parts of the novel intact. Bridget is still a 30-something single woman bent on self-improvement who writes daily in her diary the amount of pounds lost and gained, the number of cigarettes smoked, the alcohol units consumed. But, the movie's great strength is in the casting. Rene Zellweger is dead-on perfect as the perpetually injured, hopeful and feisty Bridget. Hugh Grant is utterly delightful as her slimy and sexy boss, Daniel. See full review. -- AL

Cinemark 16

*Cast Away (PG-13)
Cast Away is not a great film -- it wanders in the end and loses dramatic momentum almost fatally -- but Tom Hanks' is a great performance. Hanks is touching, funny, painfully human, passing his time on a desert talking to a volleyball, washed ashore in a FedEx package. When he is finally rescued and returns to civilization, we don't give a damn about what will happen with his girlfriend at home, nicely played by Helen Hunt; we just want to see how he will adjust his life, given what he has learned. See full review. -- KCE

The Broadmoor

Evolution (PG-13)
See full review.

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills

A Knight's Tale (PG-13)
A silly, light-weight medieval tale set largely in the jousting ring, with combat scenes so innocuous that the clashing of lances at high speed is visually digestible, even for the sensitive viewer. Starring babe/boy Heath Ledger. See full review. -- KCE

Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Memento (R)
Directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Guy Pearce, Memento is a startling murder mystery in the tradition of Alfred Hitchcock, and a bundle of promise for everything that follows from Nolan. The story: Leonard Shelby (Pearce) lost his wife in a brutal murder/rape, and with the police uninvolved, is determined to solve the crime himself. But he's severely handicapped: Due to brain damage suffered while fighting his wife's attacker, he can remember everything that happened prior to the accident, but everything since is forgotten -- over and over again. The most strategic device in the film is an inverted timeline. The story begins at the end and works backward, giving us -- and Leonard -- tiny clues to discover how the tumultuous plot pieces together. We experience Leonard's frustration; like him, we have no memory of what has come before. You have to promise to see this movie. Memento is inventive, compelling, and worth seeing twice. See full review. -- Patton Dodd

Kimball's Twin Peak

*Moulin Rouge (PG-13)
What a glorious mess! Aussie director Baz Luhrmann once again pulls out the stops, creating a film universe that is sodden with color and immersed in song. A viewer may feel he's missing half the film, there's so much to see, but everything eventually sinks in. Ewan McGregor plays Christian, a young penniless poet from the countryside. Nicole Kidman plays Satine, star of the Moulin Rouge stage and famed courtesan, who dreams of being a real actress. Elaborate sets, combined with Luhrmann's manic visual style, keep the eye busy with almost more than it can handle, but to accuse Moulin Rouge of excess is a little like saying the sun is too bright, the rain too wet. See full review. -- KCE

Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Kimball's Twin Peak Theater, Tinseltown

*O Brother, Where Art Thou? (PG-13)
God love the Coen brothers. What kind of mind imagines Homer's Odyssey set in Depression-era rural Mississippi? This funny, slight idea is lovingly and solidly conceived and executed. George Clooney is pitch perfect as Ulysses Everett McGill, a smart-talking, slick-looking con man who breaks away from a penal farm chain gang and drags along the two guys who happen to be hooked up to him on either side -- dour Pete (John Turturro) and hapless Delmar (Tim Blake Nelson). The Coens create a perfectly imagined universe, inhabited by fiends and angels of all sorts. See full review. -- KCE

Silver Cinemas

Pearl Harbor (PG-13)
A bald-faced exploitation flick, preying on our nation's collective if fuzzy memory of being attacked, faulty in its historic re-creation, insipid in its lame, manipulative love story, and embarrassingly vapid in its telling of one of the critical military attacks of the 20th century. The outstanding computer-generated special effects serve only to desensitize the audience: The carnage of the "date that will live in infamy" never seems real or human. Character development in this overly long and sentimental love/war story is non-existent. The heroes played by Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett merely spout lines borrowed from vintage World War II dramas while posturing through their love triangle. See full review. -- KCE

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Save the Last Dance (PG-13)
While it doesn't exactly revolutionize race relations in the U.S., the interracial romance Save the Last Dance is well-intentioned, well-crafted and well-acted. It manages to find its way around stupid racist pitfalls by giving the two main characters -- Sara (Julia Stiles), a white suburban girl, and Derek (Sean Patrick Thomas), a black inner city boy who dreams of getting out of the ghetto -- equal weight. See full review. -- AL

Silver Cinemas

*Spy Kids (PG)
"Family movies" of the last few years have generally been pretty lame, full of mean-spirited goofiness, appalling gender stereotypes, and dumbed-down humor. What a relief to be treated to the silly, smart, well-conceived Spy Kids. The bad guys are really bad but not too scary, the slapstick humor is funny without being mean, and the sets are wonderful fun-house send-ups of children's television. See full review. -- AL

Special screenings at Chapel Hills for the hearing impaired: Mon, June 18, and Wed., June 20, 3:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.

Swordfish (R)
See full review.

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

  • Our reviewers' recommendations for films showing on Colorado Springs area screens.


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