Film Clips 

Capsule reviews of recently reviewed movies

Opening Friday

KUNG FU PANDA (PG) An inept panda (voiced by Jack Black) must become a kung fu master to defend his jungle friends from evil snow leopards.

STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE 4 stars (NR) An extensive inside look at the Abu Ghraib prison scandal.

SURFWISE (R) See review.

YOU DON'T MESS WITH THE ZOHAN (PG-13) Zohan (Adam Sandler), an Israeli commando, fakes his own death to follow his dream of being a hairdresser.

Duly Noted

THE COLLECTOR (NR) Director Olympia Stone explores Allan Stone's passion for his extravagant collections of art and automobiles in this documentary. Free-$5. 2 p.m. The Contemporary, 535 Means St. thecontemporary.org.

THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (1975) (R) The cult classic of cult classics, the musical horror spoof follows an all-American couple (Susan Sarandon and Barry Bostwick) to the castle of Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Tim Curry), a drag queen/mad scientist from another galaxy. Midnight, Fridays at Plaza Theatre, and Saturdays at Peachtree Cinema & Games, Norcross.

Continuing

88 MINUTES (R) Al Pacino stars as a forensic psychiatrist and college professor who has 88 minutes to solve his own murder before it happens.

BABY MAMA 2 stars (PG-13) "30 Rock" creator Tina Fey plays a variation of her small-screen alter ego as an unmarried successful executive who hires an uncouth surrogate (Amy Poehler) to have her child. Former "Saturday Night Live" co-anchors, Fey and Poehler make an appealing comedic duo, but the film never rises above the thudding level of a female "Odd Couple" dynamic of slob vs. snob, while writer/director Michael McCullers shows no understanding of real-world fertility issues. -- Curt Holman

BEFORE THE RAINS 2 stars (PG-13) For all of director Santosh Sivan's (Bride and Prejudice) formidable visual sensibilities, he plods his way predictably through the culture clash of a story centering around T.K. (Rahul Bose), an Indian villager who finds his loyalties challenged when he discovers the love affair between his boss, British spice harvester Henry Moores (Linus Roache), and the boss' married Indian maid Sanjani (Nandita Das). It's not melodrama; it's domestic silliness and Sivan misses the opportunity to tell the viewer more about the country he seems to love so much. -- David Lee Simmons

BODY OF WAR 3 stars (NR) A documentary following the story of Tomas Young, a paralyzed Iraq war veteran, as he questions his decision to go to Iraq and adapts to life in a paralyzed body.

THE BUCKET LIST 3 stars (PG-13) A high-maintenance zillionaire (Jack Nicholson) and a dignified mechanic (Morgan Freeman) become mismatched buddies as roommates on a cancer ward, then decide to live their last months crossing items off "the bucket list" of things to do before death. Despite both actors' penchant for self-parody, here they play off each other like old pros, and director Rob Reiner, improving significantly from flops such as Rumor Has It..., makes the predictable humor and platitudes go down easy. -- Holman

DR. SEUSS' HORTON HEARS A WHO! 4 stars (G) In this CGI adaptation of the Dr. Seuss classic, a kindly elephant (voiced by Jim Carrey) protects microscopic Whoville from hostile nay-sayers led by Carol Burnett's Sour Kangaroo. Horton cleverly doubles the narrative by making the Whoville mayor (Steve Carell) another lonely believer, and generally retains the heart of the book and slapstick worthy of old Bugs Bunny cartoons. It's as if the filmmakers knew exactly how big a desecration was Carrey's How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and did exactly the opposite. -- Holman

DRILLBIT TAYLOR 2 stars (PG-13) Persecuted by a psycho bully (Alex Frost), three meek high schoolers (Nate Hartley, Troy Gentile and David Dorfman) hire supersoldier Drillbit Taylor (Owen Wilson) to be their bodyguard, unaware that he's actually a nonconfrontational homeless panhandler. Overlong and underfunny, Drillbit Taylor wastes the charms of Wilson and his young co-stars. Co-writer Seth Rogen also co-wrote Superbad, which has a similar dynamic between the three kids, but Drillbit is no Superbad. It's just plain bad. -- Holman

THE FALL 2 stars (R) The Fall takes place "Once upon a time" at a Los Angeles hospital around 1915, and follows the relationship of two injured patients. One-named director Tarsem presents so many exotic settings, bold compositions and hyper-realistic colors that the movie could provide a breathtaking series of glossy still photographs. The Fall confirms that the director has the eye of a genius but lacks the heart of a truly satisfying cinematic storyteller. -- Holman

THE FLIGHT OF THE RED BALLOON 3 stars (NR) The film follows several days in the life of Suzanne (Juliette Binoche), a single mom and temperamental theater artist; her son, Simon (Simon Iteanu); and their new nanny, Song (Fang Song), a Chinese film student. The lovely but languid film presents such commonplace activities, level emotions and long, leisurely takes that it's perfect for mellowing out after a stressful day or a sensory-overload film like Speed Racer. -- Holman

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Recent Comments

  • Re: Fresh air

    • Local band Manchester Orchestra, who provided the soundtrack, probably would have appreciated a shout-out.

    • on June 29, 2016
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