Archaeology Film Fest Series: Best of 2007: Selected films from this year’s Archaeology Film Fest, including Network and Journeys Into the Ring of Fire: Peru and Unearthing the Last Kingdom of Aratta (this year’s festival winner), 7:30 pm Aug. 17, and Tibet Tibet, 7:30 pm Aug. 18, DIVA. $6 each night.
Away From Her: The directorial debut of actress Sarah Polley, Away From Her garnered glowing reviews for its look at the effects of Alzheimer’s on a woman (Julie Christie) and her marriage. “Poignant, wise and unafraid,” said The Los Angeles Times. PG13. Movies 12.
Death at a Funeral: Frank Oz directs a cast of mostly Brits (and one Serenity pilot) in the farcical story of a family facing love, secrets and lies at the funeral of a loved one. Starring Matthew Macfadyen, Rupert Graves, Keely Hawes, Peter Dinklage and Alan Tudyk. R. Bijou.
Invasion: In their first pairing of the year (they’ll appear again together in The Golden Compass), Daniel Craig and Nicole Kidman star in this remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers as the only people who can stop the creepy, emotion-stealing virus. Directed by Oliver Hirshbiegel, with a few pointers (according to Entertainment Weekly) from the Wachowski brothers. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Jimi Hendrix: Band of Gypsies: Film of a 4th of July performance at Georgia’s Peach County Raceway in front of 500,000 people — and one of the few concerts known to exist by the Band of Gypsies. Bijou LateNite.
Last Legion, The: This “fantasy action-adventure” stars Colin Firth (Hi, Mr. Darcy!) and Ben Kingsley in the story of Romulus Augustus, the boy emperor of Rome, and his search for the legendary sword of Julius Caesar and the last Roman Legion. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Live Free or Die Hard: Justin Long — yes, he of the Mac ads — joins Bruce Willis for this fourth chapter in the Die Hard franchise, in which a baddie attacks the U.S.’s infrastructure over the 4th of July weekend. PG13. Movies 12.
Mr. Sean’s Cartoon Club: Crazy, weird and old cartoons featuring Betty Boop, Felix, Superman and more. Noon-1:30 pm Aug. 19. Bijou. $4.
Superbad: Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen both have fingers in this pie, as co-producer and co-writer, respectively. It’s the story of two high school friends, Evan (Michael Cera, Arrested Development) and Seth (Jonah Hill), who are trying — well, in classic teen movie fashion, they’re trying really hard to get laid. They’re about to go off to college; what do you expect? Here’s hoping the film is as funny and charming as the trailer. R. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Films open the Friday following EW publication date unless otherwise noted. See archived reviews at www.eugeneweekly.com
Becoming Jane: Anne Hathaway (The Devil Wears Prada) stars in this heavily imagined look at Jane Austen’s early years — a love affair, an inspiration. It’s sweet and the cast is a delight, but the movie can’t quite connect Jane’s two passions: her writing and her interest in dashing Tom Lefroy (a wonderful Jame McAvoy). PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. See review this issue.
Bourne Ultimatum, The: “I remember everything,” says Matt Damon’s Jason Bourne in this film’s action-packed trailer. Director Paul Greengrass and the major players (Joan Allen, Julia Stiles) return to the series’ satisfying third installment, which finds Bourne hunting down his past in stunning locations. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (8/9)
Daddy Day Camp: C’mon, Cuba Gooding Jr., don’t you have an Oscar to live up to? Oh, never mind; just keep turning out claptrap like this sequel to Daddy Day Care. Now the daddies take the kids to camp! And things get out of control! No way! PG. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Evan Almighty: Steve Carrell takes the starring role in this sequel to Bruce Almighty. Now, God (Morgan Freeman) wants Evan (Carrell), a former newscaster turned Congressman, to build an ark. Boy, that’s gonna involve a lot of critters. PG. Movies 12. VRC Stadium 15.
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer: Reed Richards, Ben Grimm and Sue and Johnny Storm face off with the shiny guy who rides an equally shiny surfboard — and leaves destruction in his wake. PG13. Movies 12.
Hairspray: Based on John Waters’ 1988 cult classic, Hairspray is about teenagers on a local Baltimore dance show — especially one short, plump, cheery girl who loves to dance. With John Travolta in drag. PG. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (7/26)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: The Ministry of Magic is in denial about the return of Lord Voldemort, Hogwarts get a nasty new teacher and Harry … Harry’s in one kind of trouble or another throughout the mostly successful and only slightly disappointing fifth HP film. It’s not quite Prisoner of Azkaban, but it’s getting there. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (7/19)
I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry: Adam Sandler and Kevin James star as a couple of firefighters who, for various bureaucratic insurance reasons, claim to be domestic parners — all fun and games until the news gets ahold of the story. I’m sure all related issues are dealt with thoughtfully. Um, right. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Knocked Up: Judd Apatow follows The 40-Year-Old Virgin with a sweet yet still raunchy comedy about the unwanted pregnancy that occurs when up-and-coming journalist Alison (Katherine Heigl of Grey’s Anatomy) has a one-night stand with slacker Ben (Seth Rogen). R. Movies 12. (6/7)
La Vie en Rose: This majestic, flawless film explores the life of Edith Piaf, as played to perfection by Marion Cotillard. Olivier Dahan’s film depicts the singer’s too-short life, packed with troubles and talent in seemingly equal measure, with sparing elements of the supernatural. PG13. Bijou. 44444 (7/19)
Nancy Drew: The classic teen heroine arrives on the big screen in the form of Emma Roberts, whose perkiness isn’t enough to put the charm in this awkward film, which updates Nancy’s setting and the subject of her investigation, but not her style or demeanor. PG. Movies 12. (6/21)
No Reservations: Not all chefs are as hot as the oddly appealing Anthony Bourdain (whose travel show shares a title with this film) or, say, Catherine Zeta-Jones, who here plays a perfectionist chef at a fancy Manhattan restaurant whose world is shaken up by the arrival of her niece (Abigail Breslin) and a new sous chef (Aaron Eckhart) with a style in direct opposition to her own. PG. VRC Stadium 15.
Ocean’s 13: The formula doesn’t change much for the third Ocean’s outing: Suave stars have a grand old time concocting heists, executing plans and looking good in suits. But the charm is wearing thin. With George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and a bunch of other folks. PG13. Movies 12. (6/14)
Once: John Carney’s movie takes “lyrical” to a different level with the gentle, engrossing story of two musicians who find an unexpected connection on the streets of Dublin. Threaded with lovely songs composed by the movie’s leads, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, Once is an exceptional accomplishment of intimate filmmaking. R. Bijou. 44444 (7/26)
Paprika: A thrilling, imaginative, even lovely trip through a dreamscape brought to life by the DC Mini, a device that renders a sleeper’s dreams share-able — and eventually, in the wrong hands, brings them into the real world. This unforgettably creative animated film is among the best of the year so far; its images are indelible. R. Bijou LateNite. (7/5)
Ratatouille: The latest animated film from Pixar is directed by Brad Bird (whose The Iron Giant is too often overlooked) and concerns a big-dreaming rat who wants to be a chef. When he makes a deal with a garbage boy, the culinary world of Paris gets far more than it ever imagined. G. VRC Stadium 15. (7/12)
Rush Hour 3: Did I forget this one when I made my list of this summer’s needless sequels? Did I mention I blame director Brett Ratner for the murky mess that was last year’s X-Men 3? Does it matter? Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker, questionable jokes and action humor: you know what you’re getting. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Shrek the Third: When Shrek’s father-in-law kicks the bucket, the ogre finds himself the reluctant king of Far Far Away. His only hope of getting out of the job? His wife’s slacker cousin. PG. Movies 12.
Simpsons Movie, The: Well, our Springfield didn’t get the premiere, but in the film maybe we’ll still see some hints that we are the real Simpsons Springfield? Still no idea what it’s about, but does it matter? PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Skinwalkers: Like being a hormonally-addled 13-year-old isn’t enough, young Timothy (Matthew Knight) has to deal with the added difficulty of coming into his werewolf heritage. Also? Dangerous prophecies are afoot. PG13. Cinemark.
Spider-Man 3: Spidey (Tobey Maguire) faces an ungodly number of new villains (including those played by Thomas Haden Church and Topher Grace) as the franchise trucks through its overfull third installment. PG13. Movies 12. (5/10)
Stardust: Matthew Vaughn (Layer Cake) takes a firm and steady hand to the many plot threads of this adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s novel. The result is wicked and charming, sweet and sly, with a stellar cast (Claire Danes, Michelle Pfeiffer, Robert De Niro) and a superb sense of humor. Oh, the story? A young man promises a young lady he’ll fetch her a falling star — but he’s not the only one searching out the young woman who fell from the sky. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (8/9)
Surf’s Up: The young, talented, possibly misguided Shia LaBeouf voices Cody Maverick, a teenage penguin surfer entering his first pro competition. A documentary crew’s filming his every move, which might — sort of — explain that “based on a true story” joke in the preview. PG. Movies 12.
Transformers: It wouldn’t be summer without a Michael Bay film, right? Hot on the heels of those other ’80s toys the Ninja Turtles, the Transformers arrive, bigger and flashier than ever. Earth, it seems, will be the battleground for the war between the Autobots and the Decepticons. With Shia LaBeouf (Holes) and Megan Fox. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Underdog: Jason Lee voices the titular canine, who finds himself superpowered after an incident in the lab of mad scientist Simon Barsinister (Peter Dinklage). Bad guys have plots, but Underdog has a spaniel to impress! Oh, and the day to save. PG. Cinemark.
Bijou Art Cinemas
Bijou Theater 686-2458 | 492 E. 13th
VRC Stadium 15 342-6536 | Valley River Center
Movies 12 741-1231 | Gateway Mall
Cinemark 17 741-1231 | Gateway Mall