Movie Picks 

Aeon Flux (PG-13) Picture Show

Annapolis (PG-13) A young man from the wrong side of the tracks has the opportunity to attend the Naval Academy at Annapolis. Starring James Franco, Tyrese Gibson, Jordana Brewster and Donnie Wahlberg. Not reviewed Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Big Momma's House 2 (PG-13) In this sequel, Martin Lawrence stars as an FBI agent who must go undercover as a woman. Not reviewed Carmike Stadium 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Brokeback Mountain (R) Ang Lee's directorial restraint, the Larry McMurtry-Diana Ossana screenplay so faithful to Annie Proulx's story, near-perfect casting and the magnificent Wyoming landscape yield an unforgettable film, a true Western surrounding a tragic love story. Most critics have deemed Brokeback Mountain Heath Ledger's film, but it is equally Jake Gyllenhaal's. Both deliver mature, finely wrought performances. The film's emotional impact is precisely as blunt, clear and devastating as Proulx's prose, a remarkable accomplishment. Kathryn Eastburn Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Kimball's Twin Peak, Tinseltown

*Capote (R) Instead of memorializing Truman Capote with the standard film biopic, traveling from childhood through illustrious career to death, the producer/star (Philip Seymour Hoffman), screenwriter (Dan Futterman) and director (Bennett Miller) chose to limit their drama to one brief era of his life, the years he spent writing his tour de force, In Cold Blood. Capote depicts an artist's dilemma and ultimate demise when faced with selling his soul for a story. Kathryn Eastburn Chapel Hills 15, Tinseltown

Cheaper by the Dozen 2 (PG) Picture Show

*The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (PG) Director Andrew Adamson (Shrek ) has done a masterful job adapting C.S. Lewis' beloved children's book to the screen. Whether Lewis would have approved of the vicious and divisive marketing ploys claiming the film for a fundamentalist Christian audience, and casting fear and dread on secular filmgoers, has been debated widely since before the film was released. Regardless, except for a slight overdose of computer-generated special effects in the battle scenes Narnia on steroids it is simply wonderful. Kathryn Eastburn Carmike Stadium 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Derailed (R) Picture Show

Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story (PG) Picture Show

End of the Spear (PG-13) When five young missionaries are speared to death by Waodani tribesmen in Ecuador in 1956, the lives of the missionaries' families and Mincayani's (Louie Leonardo's) people are changed forever. Not reviewed Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

The Family Stone (PG-13) Picture Show

Fun with Dick and Jane (PG-13) A remake of the 1977 comedy in which a married couple turns to robbery to pay the bills. Starring Jim Carrey and Tea Leoni. Not reviewed Carmike Stadium 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Glory Road (PG) The story of the first all-black starting lineup to win college basketball's NCAA championship. Not reviewed Carmike Stadium 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Good Night, and Good Luck. (PG) Chapel Hills 15, Tinseltown

*Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (PG-13) Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16 IMAX

Hoodwinked (PG) There's a huge problem with Hoodwinked, and it isn't the one suggested by its trailers and posters. Or by the double-meaning of the scene in the film where Little Red Riding Hood (Anne Hathaway) comments to the wolf (Patrick Warburton) in Granny's clothing, "Your face looks weird." This simple-minded cartoon deserves to be pilloried for falling victim to that contemporary kid-flick game of can-you-top-this: the obsession with being ever more hip and pop-culture savvy. Scott Renshaw Carmike Stadium 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Hostel (R) Three American backpackers travel to a Slovakian city in search of hedonism, but instead they find horror. Not reviewed Tinseltown

*King Kong (PG-13) In the past, it has been enough for special effects to convince us that something exists. Director Peter Jackson wants us to believe that Kong has lived. The New Zealand director has raised the bar for action set pieces, but that's not why his movies are terrific. He wants to couple modern technological wonder with genuine emotion, and he wants to do it by making us feel for things that aren't really there. Scott Renshaw Carmike Stadium 10, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Last Holiday (PG-13) After being diagnosed with a terminal illness, a shy woman (Queen Latifah) decides to take a European vacation and erase all of her boundaries. Also starring LL Cool J and Timothy Hutton. Not reviewed Carmike Stadium 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

The Legend of Zorro (PG) Picture Show

Lewis and Clark: Great Journey West (NR) The film chronicles the Corps of Discovery, led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, into uncharted territory to find a water passageway to the Pacific Ocean. Not reviewed Cinemark 16 IMAX

*The Matador (R) The Matador never becomes a fish-out-of-water farce about a hit man in the suburbs; it's as finely observed a character piece as you'll find. The operative term here is "execution," and not just as it relates to Julian's (Pierce Brosnan's) profession. Scott Renshaw Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Match Point (R) See full review on page 15. Kimball's Twin Peak

Memoirs of a Geisha (PG-13) The film adaptation of Arthur Golden's Memoirs of a Geisha has inspired controversy by casting Chinese (and not Japanese) actresses in the film's three key roles. Golden's novel perhaps even to a fault focused on the day-to-day minutiae that made the world of geishas so uniquely compelling. But the film hones in on the romance and power struggles that make for bigger, more dramatic cinema. It's not just the actresses that lack a distinctively Japanese flavor; it's the film as a whole. Scott Renshaw Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Munich (R) Munich , with its shimmeringly dark 1970s color palette, understated performances, arching historical context and moral ambiguity, is so brave, so compellingly filmed and told, that the director seems like a new Steven Spielberg altogether, one who's figured out that we've learned little from the violent world events of the last century. The new Spielberg fears for the future of humanity and can make a white-knuckle, action-adventure film about that without sacrificing character, plot or deeply humane motivation and without preaching. Kathryn Eastburn Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

Nanny McPhee (PG-13) Emma Thompson plays a governess who uses magic to make motherless children behave. Not reviewed Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

The New World (PG-13) Terrence Malick makes movies in which big-name stars play characters who reveal themselves primarily through ponderous voice-over narration. But there comes a point in any movie when the number of shots of people wandering meditatively through nature reaches critical mass. And in The New World, that point comes long before the credits roll. Scott Renshaw Tinseltown

*Pride and Prejudice (PG) Picture Show

The Ringer (PG-13) Picture Show

Something New (PG-13) The story of a woman who has everything together, except for her love life. The directorial debut of Sanaa Hamri. Not reviewed Carmike Stadium 10, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Syriana (R) Syriana is as much a position paper as it is a film. It's a multi-layered construction of the tangled connections between business, politics and money as concerns American policies in the Middle East the petroleum-trade equivalent of how Stephen Gaghan handled the drug trade in his Oscar-winning script for 2000's Traffic. Syriana is that rare politically themed film that has something to say, yet generally allows you to figure out its meaning on your own. Scott Renshaw Carmike Stadium 10, Tinseltown

Underworld: Evolution (R) As the war between vampires and werewolves rages on, the legacy of both races is revealed, including the personal history of Selene (Kate Beckinsale). Not reviewed Carmike Stadium 10, Chapel Hills 15, Cinemark 16, Tinseltown

*Walk the Line (PG-13) The movie comes to life when Joaquin Phoenix takes the stage, channeling the sober depth and power of Johnny Cash's personality and his musical voice. The on-stage moments are fabulous, and director James Mangold wisely gives us entire musical numbers instead of just snippets of songs. The film is true to Cash's life as told in his approved biography and autobiography, and the story is a doozy. Kathryn Eastburn Tinseltown

Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (G) Picture Show

Wild Safari 3-D: A South African Adventure (NR) A simulated safari with elephants, rhinos, leopards, lions and buffaloes where the viewer learns about the habitats and lives of these animals in South Africa. Not reviewed Cinemark 16 IMAX

Yours, Mine and Ours (PG) Picture Show

Zathura (PG) Picture Show


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