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THE GREAT DEBATERS (PG-13) Denzel Washington stars and directs in the true story of Melvin B. Tolson, a professor at Wiley College in Texas. In 1935 Tolson created the school's first debate team, leading it to challenge Harvard in the national championship.
HOW SHE MOVE (PG-13) Raya Green (newcomer Rutina Wesley) is forced to leave private school and return home to her impoverished neighborhood following her sister's death, where she rediscovers her love for competitive step dancing. This Sundance Film Festival hit features choreography by Hi Hat.
I AM LEGEND 4 stars (PG-13) Will Smith plays the sole human inhabitant of New York City after a genetically engineered virus wipes out most of mankind and turns the rest into blood-crazed mutants. The film offers nearly unbearable suspense scenes and stunning images of postapocalyptic Manhattan, overrun with wild animals with grass growing up through the streets. Despite some heavy-handed, ineffectual philosophizing in the last act, Smith delivers one of his best performances and I Am Legend turns out to be the best "summer movie" of 2007. -- Holman
IN BRUGES 3 stars (R) Two Irish hitmen (Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson) lay low in Belgium's preserved medieval town of Bruges in this hipster thriller from brash young playwright Martin McDonagh. McDonagh proves that his knack for compelling, profanely funny dialogue can transfer from stage to screen, although at times he traffics in disposable themes that don't quite justify the savage behavior on screen. In a good way, In Bruges suggests the "Royale with Cheese" scene from Pulp Fiction, if we'd followed John Travolta to Europe. -- Holman
JUMPER (PG-13) Backed by director Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity), and screenwriters David S. Goyer (Batman Begins), Jim Uhls (Fight Club) and Simon Kinberg (Mr. & Mrs. Smith), Jumper is a science-fiction thriller about a man (Hayden Christensen) who can teleport anywhere, anytime. Co-stars Jamie Bell, Rachel Bilson, Samuel L. Jackson and Diane Lane.
JUNO 4 stars (PG-13) An insanely funny script by Diablo Cody and bone-dry comic timing provided by Ellen Page make Juno feel like the breakout indie of the year. Page is a knocked-up 16-year-old who decides to hand over her child to a couple (Jason Bateman, Jennifer Garner) she thinks are desperate for a baby. Things turn out to be more complicated, and much sweeter than this attitudinal comedy initially suggests. -- Feaster
MAD MONEY (PG-13) Diane Keaton, Katie Holmes and Queen Latifah star in this comedy about three working-class women who plan to rob the Federal Reserve Bank. Callie Khouri (Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood) directs.
MEET THE SPARTANS (PG-13) From screenwriters Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer who cranked out Scary Movie, Date Movie and Epic Movie comes another mockery: today's film industry. Meet the Spartans is a spoof of 300 but takes hits at other popular flicks and movie icons, as the invading Persian army includes Paris Hilton, Transformers and Rocky Balboa.
MICHAEL CLAYTON 4 stars (R) George Clooney stars in this re-release as Michael Clayton, a metaphorical janitor, serving as custodian of the dirty secrets of New York's masters of the universe. Tony Gilroy directs this slick conspiracy thriller that harks back, like a recurring nightmare, to the paranoia of Three Days of the Condor and other 1970s suspense films. -- Holman
MISS PETTIGREW LIVES FOR A DAY (PG-13) Set in the late 1930s, this romantic film focuses on Miss Pettigrew (Frances McDormand), a laid-off governess who decides to seize the day and apply for a position as a social secretary for an actress and singer, Delysia Lafosse (Amy Adams). Also staring Lee Pace, Ciarán Hinds, Shirley Henderson, Mark Strong and Tom Payne.
NATIONAL TREASURE 2: BOOK OF SECRETS (PG) In the sequel to National Treasure, treasure-hunter Ben Gates (Nicolas Cage) follows clues in a mystery involving John Wilkes Booth and the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Jon Turteltaub directs.
NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN 4 stars (R) The Coen brothers make a rousing return to form in this Texas crime drama that strips away their trademark irony for brilliant, suspenseful set pieces. Josh Brolin's Vietnam vet, Tommy Lee Jones' aging sheriff and Javier Bardem's ruthless hitman engage in a three-way chase on either side of the Rio Grande. Don't let the anticlimactic ending sour you on the superb filmmaking. -- Holman
ONE MISSED CALL (PG-13) The English remake of a Japanese thriller about a group of young people who start receiving voice mails from the future detailing their deaths.
THE OTHER BOLEYN GIRL (PG-13) Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson star as the Boleyn sisters, whose ambitious family drives them to compete for King Henry VIII's affections as a pathway to the throne. The Other Boleyn Girl is based on the novel by Philippa Gregory.