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Movie picks 

Films recommended by our reviewers are indicated by an *.

Abduction (PG-13)

The film focuses on a youth who discovers the parents who raised him aren't his real folks, a revelation that triggers events and leaves him running for his life. — Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

Apollo 18 (PG-13)

In December of 1974, two American astronauts were sent on a secret mission to the moon funded by the U.S. Department of Defense. What you are about to see is the actual footage which the astronauts captured on that mission. — Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15

Bad Teacher (R)

After being dumped by her current boyfriend, a foul-mouthed, gold-digging seventh-grade teacher sets her sights on a colleague who is dating the school's model teacher. — Not reviewed

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Captain America: The First Avenger (PG-13)

This is a WWII-set comic book adventure about a once-meek U.S. soldier turned hero thanks to an experimental super serum that grants strength and agility far beyond that of a normal human being. — Not reviewed

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Cars 2 (G)

It felt like Pixar promised us that it would remain grounded in something more vital than the sparkle and speed of contemporary computer-generated movie-making. But with Cars 2, it feels as though that promise has been broken. — Scott Renshaw

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*Contagion (PG-13)

This is no mere disaster movie; it's a meticulous doomsday scenario imagined by someone with a clear need to visualize the worst as a salve to his anxiety. — Justin Strout

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Cinemark 16 IMAX, Hollywood Interquest, Kimball's Peak Three, Tinseltown

Cowboys & Aliens (PG-13)

Neither homage nor satire, it's more like a brainstormed shorthand checklist of plot points and payoffs. — Jonathan Kiefer

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*The Debt (R)

The Debt, a new thriller, fleshes out a great scenario with fresh action beats, some killer acting and wonderful interplay between Jessica Chastain and Helen Mirren. — Justin Strout

Hollywood Interquest, Kimball's Peak Three

Dolphin Tale (PG)

The amazing true story of a brave dolphin and the compassionate strangers who banded together to save her life. — Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

*Don't Be Afraid of the Dark (R)

The haunted-house thriller sometimes feels like a lost art. But like Insidious earlier this year, Don't Be Afraid of the Dark is a triumph of mood and tone that dutifully holds us in suspense until the very end. — Dan Hudak

Tinseltown

Drive (R)

Drive is a movie about sexy people and cars. Or maybe not cars, but the experience of being in them, with sexy people. It's ridiculous, but differently than you might expect — neither all that fast nor especially furious. — Jonathan Kiefer

Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

Faust: Live from the Royal Opera House (NR)

Faust, an aging philosopher, trades his soul to the Devil in exchange for youth and the love of the beautiful Marguerite. — Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15

Final Destination 5 (R)

Death makes a killing in the next installment of this horror series. — Not reviewed

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Friends With Benefits (R)

This film tries to make fun of rom-com conventions and subvert them, but then ends up in the same place that all rom-coms end up. It's a nice idea, but when you veer too far off course, everything is bound to crumble, and it does. — Dan Hudak

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*The Guard (R)

Even when the movie ends in a hail of violence, you don't know whether you're being played by the cop in question, a bad man in the eyes of society, but who is good at the end of the day. And that is exactly how they want it. — Anders Wright

Kimball's Peak Three

*Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (PG-13)

It's fair to say that while Hallows 2.0 is far from a perfect piece of filmcraft, director David Yates and screenwriter Steve Kloves know exactly how to guide us through this final chapter. — Scott Renshaw

Chapel Hills 15

The Help (PG-13)

Set in Mississippi in the '60s, a southern society girl returns from college determined to become a writer, but turns her friends' lives upside down when she decides to interview the black women who have spent their lives taking care of prominent southern families. — Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

Horrible Bosses (R)

Horrible Bosses is a rarity in that the story holds together throughout while just about every joke, quip, one-liner and physical gag works. — Dan Hudak

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I Don't Know How She Does It (PG-13)

The tale of a Boston-based working mother (Sarah Jessica Parker) trying desperately to juggle marriage, children and a high-stress job. — Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15

Killer Elite (R)

Every Jason Statham flick is the same. Is the action any fun? Not even. Newbie director Gary McKendry doesn't know much about staging an interesting fight. He does love him some metaphors, though. — MaryAnn Johanson

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

Kung Fu Panda 2 (PG)

Po is now living his dream as the Dragon Warrior. But his new life of awesomeness is threatened by the emergence of a formidable villain, who plans to use a secret, unstoppable weapon to conquer China and destroy kung fu. — Not reviewed

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The Lion King (G)

A chance to catch Walt Disney Picture's 32nd animated film again, in theaters for two weeks only. — Not reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

*Moneyball (PG-13)

What follows could have been a standard-issue "underdog sports team" tale, and in some sense, it is. But Moneyball takes angles on these components that are at times completely original, and at times so well-executed that they feel completely original. — Scott Renshaw

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

Mr. Popper's Penguins (PG)

This material deserved the Big Fish treatment, something with scope and intimacy, absurdist flourishes and a warm palette. Instead, the new film starring Jim Carrey, isn't an adaptation, it's a crime scene. — Justin Strout

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*Rise of the Planet of the Apes (PG-13)

Escapism isn't about what happens on the screen, but what happens to us: You want to lose yourself in a movie. Rise of the Planet of the Apes is the essence of the summer flick, and this is how you do it. — MaryAnn Johanson

Carmike 10, Tinseltown

Seven Days in Utopia (G)

The film follows the story of Luke Chisolm, a talented young golfer. When his first big shot turns out to be a very public disaster, Luke escapes the pressures of the game and finds himself unexpectedly stranded in Utopia, Texas, home to eccentric rancher Johnny Crawford. — Not reviewed

Tinseltown

Shark Night (PG-13)

Arriving by boat at her family's Louisiana lake island cabin, Sara and her friends quickly strip down to their swimsuits for a weekend of fun in the sun. The college friends soon discover the lake has been stocked with hundreds of massive, flesh-eating sharks. — Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15

The Smurfs (PG)

A hybrid live-action and animated family comedy. When the evil wizard Gargamel chases the Smurfs out of their village, they're forced through a portal and into our world. They must find a way home. — Not reviewed

Chapel Hills 15

Transformers: Dark of the Moon (PG-13)

Dark of the Moon is yet another Michael Bay movie in which any given 10 minutes would almost certainly be better as only three. — Scott Renshaw

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*Warrior (PG-13)

It should be easy to knock down Warrior, the new mixed martial-arts-themed film about two estranged brothers who face off in the cage for a winner-take-all prize. But despite the litany of sports-movie clichés, Gavin O'Connor's new movie is entertaining, engrossing and inspiring. — Anders Wright

Hollywood Interquest, Tinseltown

Zookeeper (PG)

Kevin James stars as a lovelorn zookeeper who gets a little help from his animal buddies in order to find a mate. — Not reviewed

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  • Our reviewers' recommendations for films playing around the area.

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