American Teen: Hit Sundance documentary follows the lives of four teens in small-town Indiana. Says it goes beyond stereotypes, yet describes its four characters as “a jock, the popular girl, the artsy girl and the geek,” which is about as predictable as can be. Roger Ebert says it’s “an engrossing film.” PG-13. 95 min. Bijou.
Choke: Writer-director-actor Clark Gregg adapts Chuck Palahniuk’s novel full of sex addicts, scammers and complicated mother-son relationships into a funny, unexpectedly sweet film about connection and, er, getting your shit together. Sorta. Star Sam Rockwell is fantastic; great supporting cast includes Kelly Macdonald and Anjelica Huston. R. 92 min. Bijou. See review this issue.
Eagle Eye: Shia LaBeouf and Michelle Monaghan are strangers thrown together by the instruction-filled phone calls of a woman who tells them to do all sorts of crazy, dangerous things. What the hell is going on? Will anybody care? Directed by D.J. Caruso (Disturbia). PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Fireproof: “Religious romantic drama” starring Kirk Cameron as a man who’s got to get things sorted with God in order to fix his marriage. PG. VRC Stadium 15.
Miracle at St. Anna: The latest from Spike Lee tells the story of four WWII soldiers in the all-black 92nd Division who wind up behind enemy lines in Italy after one of them rescues a young boy. Stars Derek Luke, Michael Ealy, Joseph Gordon-Levitt. R. 160 min (whoa!). Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Nights in Rodanthe: Another romance (minus the whole murder angle of Unfaithful) starring Richard Gere and Diane Lane, this time as two unhappy people drawn together during a storm. Based on a novel by Nicholas Sparks (The Notebook). With Mae Whitman and James Franco. PG13. 97 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Repo Man: Estevez’s breakout role as a former punk-turned-repossesion agent competing against other “repo men” and actual FBI agents to find a mystical, possibly alien-related Chevy Malibu in the slums of L.A. turned out to be, after the mess of his 2007 directorial botchjob Bobby, one of the best things Martin Sheen’s son has done with his life. With Harry Dean Stanton, Dick Rude and Del Zamora. R. 92 min. 11:30 pm Saturday, Sept. 27, Bijou.
Searchers 2.0: Fiercely independent British director Alex Cox again returns to the spaghetti western spoof genre for this comedy about two former character actors who hit the road to Monument Valley to seek revenge on a screenwriter who wronged them. A Q&A with Cox follows the film. With Del Zamora, Leonard Maltin and Jaclyn Jonet. Not rated. 96 min. 11:30 pm Friday, Sept. 26, Bijou.
Babylon A.D.: Vin Diesel stars as a mercenary hired to take a package from Eastern Europe to New York City in a post-apocalypic world. There’s more to the package than expected, though. With Michelle Yeoh. Directed by Mathieu Kassovitz (Gothika). PG13. 90 min. Cinemark.
Burn After Reading: The Coen brothers follow up the dark No Country For Old Men with this comedy about an ex-CIA spy’s memoir that falls into the hands of a couple of gym employees. With George Clooney, John Malkovich, Tilda Swinton, Frances McDormand and Brad Pitt. R. 96 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (9/18)
Dark Knight, The: Christopher Nolan’s second take on the alter ego of Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale), who has a new nemesis in the Joker (Heath Ledger, earning whispers of a posthumous Oscar nod), is both an enthrallingly entertaining summer action movie and a complicated moral tangle. With Maggie Gyllenhaal, Michael Caine and Aaron Eckhart. PG13.152 min. Cinemark. (7/24)
Death Race: Jason Statham (The Transporter) is a falsely convicted criminal (and racing champ) forced to take part in an evil prison warden (Joan Allen)’s brutal race, in which convicts compete … for their lives! With Ian McShane. R. Cinemark.
Get Smart: Steve Carell is newly promoted former CONTROL analyst Maxwell Smart, sent on a mission to save the world from agents of KAOS; Anne Hathaway is his sidekick (who one suspects may be slightly more competent), Agent 99. This adaptation of the 1960s TV show also gives us Terence Stamp as a baddie and The Rock as a superspy. PG13. 110 min. Movies 12.
Ghost Town: Beautifully dry British actor Ricky Gervais (The Office) stars as a man who dies for seven minutes, and finds that, as a result, he can see and talk to ghosts — who all want things. Greg Kinnear costars as the central undead man. PG13. 102 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Hancock: Grumpy, drunken, superpowered Hancock (Will Smith, aka Mr. July) has a habit of wreaking considerable destuction when saving lives. But a PR guy (Jason Bateman) somehow shows Hancock that he does have a softer side. He can be better! At least I think that’s what he says in the ads. PG13. 92 min. Movies 12.
House Bunny, The: Playboy bunny Shelley Darlington (Anna Faris) gets booted from the mansion and finds herself helping the members of a sorority that’s in danger of losing its house. She teaches them about makeup! They teach her about individuality! Please, Hollywood. Stop that. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Igor: When Igor gets sick of being an evil scientist’s assistant, he and two companions (a previously dead bunny and a brain in a jar) try to create their own terrible monster. Things go terribly awry — and they need to help save the world! Oddly enough, this cutely macabre animated tale came to life with no help from Tim Burton. Voice of John Cusack, Steve Buscemi and Jennifer Coolidge. PG. 87 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: It’s the only mainstream movie opening this weekend! It’s got Harrison Ford and Cate Blanchett and Shia LeBoeuf and sassy Raiders of the Lost Ark dame Karen Allen! Also, it takes place 19 years after the underrated third film in a world facing the possibility of nuclear annihilation. That’s about all I’ve got. That and a big plastic Indy whip. PG13. 124 min. Movies 12. (5/29)
Iron Man: The first major summer flick stars Robert Downy Jr. as Tony Stark, a wealthy industrialist who devises a suit that gives him the superheroic ability to take down baddies who misuse his destructive technology. Awesome. With Jeff Bridges, Terrence Howard and Gwyneth Paltrow. PG13. Movies 12. (5/8)
Journey to the Center of the Earth: Brendan Fraser stars as a less-than-traditional scientist who finds himself leading his nephew and a friend into the center of the earth, where there’s … another world! In 3D, which makes all those falling rocks and underground dinosaurs even more exciting. PG. 89 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadiium 15.
Kit Kittredge: American Girl: The insanely popular book series comes to life in the form of perky young Abigail Breslin, who stars as aspiring reporter Kit Kittredge, who needs to save her family’s home and prove that the baddies behind a string of robberies aren’t who the cops think they are. G. 101 min. Movies 12.
Kung Fu Panda: Jack Black — or at least his voice — stars as Po the Panda, a waiter whose love for kung fu serves him well when it turns out there’s a prophecy about him saving the world from some powerful enemies. With the voices of Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie and Jackie Chan. PG. 88 min. Movies 12.
Lakeview Terrace: Neil LaBute (In the Company of Men) directs this fraught tale of a couple (Patrick Wilson and Kerry Washington) whose intrusive new neighbor (Samuel L. Jackson) disapproves of their relationship. Also, he’s a cop. Which complicates things. R. 110 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Mamma Mia!: Get the song outta my head! Oh, too late. Anyway, the giant hit Broadway musical becomes a giant film starring Meryl Streep as the mother whose daughter (Amanda Seyfried of Veronica Mars) wants to find out who her father is: Colin Firth, Pierce Brosnan or Stellan Skarsgard. Oh, and there’s some Abba. PG13. 108 min. Cinemark.
Man on Wire: James Marsh (The King) takes the inherently fantastic tale of Philippe Petit, the young Frenchman who crossed the gap between the World Trade Center’s towers on a tightrope, and makes it into an engrossing documentary that avoids what Petit calls the very American question “Why?”, opting instead to explore the who and the how of the thing. Absolutely delightful. PG13. 94 min. Bijou. (9/18)
Mirrors: You know that mirror gag in horror films? When someone swings their medicine cabinet into place and — gasp! — there’s someone in the room? This pretty much looks like an entire movie of the mirror gag. With a lot of screaming. And Kiefer Sutherland. R. 110 min. Movies 12.
Mummy, The: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor: Brendan Fraser goes on his second summer adventure and his third as “explorer” Rick O’Connell. Rick’s got to take down a long-dead emperor (Jet Li) who, one assumes, wants to take over the world (isn’t that what evil emperors do?). PG13. 112 min. Movies 12.
My Best Friend’s Girl: When Dustin (Jason Biggs)’s girlfriend (Kate Hudson) dumps him, he turns to his best friend Tank (Dane Cook), a professional ass who proves to (apparently incredibly gullible) women that the men they’ve left were actually sweet and worth keeping. Things go wrong. R. 101 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Righteous Kill: Robert De Niro and Al Pacino costar as detectives hunting a serial killer who takes out criminals. A connection to a previous case the men solved together complicates things further. R. 100 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
Tropic Thunder: Ben Stiller directs this wildly funny if somewhat meandery send-up of actors and war movies; he also stars (with Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr.) as one of the primadonna actors whose director (Steve Coogan) decides to impart a bit of realism to his Vietnam film — by dropping his stars into the jungle and filming their reactions. R. 107 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (8/21)
Women, The: Remake of the 1939 classic stars Meg Ryan, Annette Bening, Eva Mendes, Debra Messing and Jada Pinkett Smith as, in the summary’s words, “group of close friends [who] meet to talk about their relationships.” As you’d expect with such a trite summary, reviews aren’t good. Sigh. PG13. 114 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.
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