Movie Picks 

*A.I.: Artificial Intelligence (PG-13)
A.I. is either a near masterpiece or a near failure. But thumbs up or down do not apply here, because this movie is not meant merely to entertain. It wants to prod, to provoke, to attempt to be art, and, as such, it deserves patient consideration. A.I. is plainly a film about Big Questions: What is our responsibility to the things we create? What's our responsibility to our creator(s)? Can technology provide happiness? Viewers will probably love or hate this film pretty quickly, but here's hoping they reserve opinion at least long enough for a long conversation with friends. See full review. -- Patton Dodd

Silver Cinemas

America's Sweethearts (PG-13)
America's Sweethearts, starring Julia Roberts, John Cusack, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Billy Crystal, disappoints both as a screwball romantic comedy and as a satire on the obscene marketing practices of Hollywood. Clearly, the writers want to say something clever and biting about the movie junket scene in which journalists are wined, dined and basically paid by the studio to say something nice about a film. Ironically, the stars of this film have been hawking it on late night and daytime TV, making the PR campaign look nearly as schmaltzy and manipulative as the one onscreen. See full review. -- KCE

Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

The Anniversary Party (R)
A group of well-to-do Hollywood types party through the night at the 6th wedding anniversary gathering of actress Sally (Jennifer Jason Leigh) and writer/director Joe (Alan Cumming), and capture it all on DVD. This small, low-budget film is well shot and well acted by a remarkable cast including Kevin Kline as an actor no longer chosen as the romantic lead; real life wife Phoebe Cates as his wife who's dropped out of show-biz to be a stay-at-home mom; John C. Reilly as Sally's frustrated director and Jane Adams as his loopy wife. Gwyneth Paltrow is Skye, a rising young star who provides hits of Ecstacy for everyone, throwing the party into a late-night confessional session revealing the fragility of all these huge egos. We feel like voyeurs in the audience, imagining that we are witnessing something true. But the truths revealed here are largely self-indulgent, whiny and sterile, enacted within a glittering glass house high above anything that resembles the real world. Recommended only for movie buffs who care about these people. -- KCE

Silver Cinemas

Cats and Dogs (PG)
Frenetic, silly and madly paced, this tale offers little entertainment value to either children or adults, except those who are excruciatingly bored and desperately seeking air conditioning. -- KCE


*crazy/beautiful (PG-13)
Two Los Angeles high school students from opposite ends of the social spectrum fall for each other in this endearing romance/drama starring Kirsten Dunst and Jay Hernandez. Dunst is superb as the sullen daughter of a neglectful but well-meaning father, played with startling authenticity by Bruce Davidson. The best of this year's slew of teen romances. -- KCE

Silver Cinemas

Jurassic Park 3 (PG-13)
The third installment of the immensely popular Jurassic Park series takes place before the events in The Lost World, in which havoc was wreaked when a malevolent corporation attempted to bring a tyrannosaurus rex to the United States and open a Jurassic Park of its own in California. Sam Neill returns as Dr. Alan Grant. Also starring John Diehl, Michael Jeter, Tea Leoni and William H. Macy. -- Not yet reviewed

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (PG-13)
Lara Croft is a young, single heiress who's regularly called upon to save the universe. She spends her days training for battle in her massive castle, fighting off dummy cyborgs and practicing insanely dangerous acrobatic stunts. We don't really know where she came from or why she's so militaristic. What we do know is that she kicks ass, and that's all that matters. See full review. -- Patton Dodd

Silver Cinemas

Legally Blonde (R)
This weak and predictable comedy by debut feature director Robert Luketic is a poorly lit attempt at dredging humor from a sterile and flat script. While Reese Witherspoon makes an attractive ditzy blonde with enough book smarts to overcompensate for her character's fashion victim obsessions, this film is a career misstep for a talented actress capable of creating much more complex characters. -- Cole Smithey

Chapel Hills, 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

Silver Cinemas

*Moulin Rouge (PG-13)
Drama/musical starring Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor about a young writer with a gift for poetry, who defies his bourgeois father by moving to the bohemian underworld of Montmartre, Paris. There he is taken in by the artist Toulouse-Lautrec and life at the Moulin Rouge, where he falls in love with the most beautiful courtesan in Paris and the star of the Moulin Rouge. Glorious, frenetic excess from Aussie director Baz Luhrmann (Strictly Ballroom). See full review. -- KCE
The Broadmoor, special screenings for the hearing impaired at Chapel Hills

Original Sin (R)
Audience members should approach Original Sin with no expectation except to be salaciously entertained. The story, as adapted by screenwriter Michael Cristofer, who also directed, is about obsession, pure and simple. Turn-of-the-century Cuba is gorgeously rendered and chock full of innocuous stereotypes. Antoinio Banderas is superb as the love-ruined Louis Durand, a rich Cuban coffee merchant who has sent off to America for a mail-order bride. We've come to know what to expect from the femme fatale bride, Angelina Jolie -- vamping seems as natural to her as tap dancing did to the young Judy Garland. -- KCE

Carmike 10, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

* The Others (PG-13)
See full review.

Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Planet of the Apes (PG-13)
Due mainly to a script that doesn't even bother to go through the motions of telling a story, any semblance of the original film's ham-fisted barbs about slavery, racism and class consciousness are lost like so many syllables evaporating from Charlton Heston's soiled mouth. Some hesitant praise is due to make-up designer Rick Baker for creating a convincing collection of monkey masks that gives the actors something to hide behind while speaking cardboard dialogue. See full review. -- Cole Smithey

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Kimball's Twin Peak, Tinseltown

The Princess Diaries (G)
Teen star Anne Hathaway plays Mia, a San Francisco teenager who considers herself to be "invisible," an awkward ugly duckling with bad glasses and too much hair. When Mia's grandmother, the Queen of Genovia (played by Julie Andrews) appears one day, announcing that Mia is heir to the throne of the tiny principality of Genovia, Mia is reluctant to assume her responsibilities, largely because she thinks she doesn't look good enough. So the transformation begins -- a complete hair, posture and elocution makeover. The problem with this lame entry into princess mythology is its false attempts to be social-minded. After Mia is scoured and scraped, coiffed and creamed into the mirror image of a Revlon ad, we are asked to believe that the real reason she wants to be a princess if to "affect change." False sentiment piles up in the last 30 minutes of the film like too many spoonfuls of sugar. See full review. -- KCE

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Rush Hour 2 (PG-13)
Rush Hour 2 is a movie sequel that comes with a preemptive seal of approval by virtue of Jackie Chan's dedication to pushing his martial arts skills to the limits of acrobatic extremes. Add to this Chan's proven screen chemistry with the infectious high-pitched comic improv abilities of Chris Tucker (Money Talks), and what follows is a stream of highly enjoyable, physically demanding set pieces punctuated by constant comic riffing. See full review. -- Cole Smithey

Carmike 10, Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*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, the sets are wonderful fun-house send-ups of children's television. The movie never once talks down to the kids in the audience (or the parents either, for that matter), and it is full of terrific Inspector Gadget-like gizmos. And there isn't a gun in the whole dang movie. The very smart and silly story is aided by very good acting on the part of both the adult and kid actors. Antonio Banderas, in particular, does a wonderful job of being both glamorous and campy at the same time. See full review. -- AL

Chapel Hills, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

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


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