OSMOSIS JONES (PG) Deep in the City of Frank (actually the body of construction worker), Osmosis Jones (Chris Rock) is a white blood cell cop who has to team up with a rookie cold tablet (David Hyde Pierce) to fight off evil viruses intent on taking over. Meanwhile, out in the "real world," a doctor (Ben Stein) is trying to diagnose what's going on inside Frank's (Bill Murray) body.
THE OTHERS (PG-13). Spooky events begin occurring at an isolated mansion in 1945. Are the three mysterious new servants trying to drive single mother Nicole Kidman mad, or is the house haunted? Chilean writer-director Alejandro AmenAbar heeds the lessons of The Sixth Sense, offering a moody, well-constructed supernatural thriller that can be contrived and ponderous at times, but builds to some imaginative scares and a clever twist that invites you to reassess the film at the end. -- CURT HOLMAN
UNDER THE SAND Napping on the beach, Marie (Charlotte Rampling) awakens to find her husband, Jean (Bruno Cremer) has disappeared. She begins the search for her longtime lover, unsure of where or why he's gone away. French with English subtitles. Directed by Francois Ozon.
CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF This Academy Award-winning drama by Tennessee Williams features wealthy landowner and patriarch Big Daddy (Burl Ives) as he celebrates his birthday and is visited by his two sons, Brick (Paul Newman) and Gooper (Jack Carson). Big Daddy has had cancer but his doctor has declared him recovered. Gooper and his wife Mae are sucking up and greedily waiting to inherit Big Daddy's millions. His favorite son Brick, on the other hand, is a drunken ex-football star with an unhappy marriage to Maggie (Elizabeth Taylor). It's all-out war to get Big Daddy's money. Showing at the Summer Sizzles Film Series Aug. 10 at 8 p.m. at the Atlanta History Center.
THE CENTER OF THE WORLD (2001) Director Wayne Wang creates a steamy portrait of love and sex in the technological age with an erotic drama about a young computer wizard (Peter Sarsgaard) whose immersion in the digital world has left him unaccustomed to normal social interaction. Showing Aug. 10-16 at cinéfest.
HEAVY METAL (2000) F.A.K.K. (Federation-Assigned Ketogenic Killzone) represents an extreme biohazard. This is the name given to an entire planet, which is home to Julie. She assumes the name F.A.K.K. when her perfect world is threatened by outsiders and her sister is abducted. Starring Billy Idol. Directed by Michael Coldewey and Michel Lemire. Showing Aug. 10 at midnight at the Marietta Star Cinema, 770-971-3511.
IMAGE FILM AND VIDEO CENTER FESTIVAL Joykill by Jay Wulliams, Daddy's Girl by Nandi Murphy, Rose Colored Glasses by Francine Labrian, Untitled by Yakini Horn and Lilia Gal by Amanda Scott. Showing Aug. 10 at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site at 7:30 p.m.
PEARL HARBOR 1/2 (PG-13) It's not an awful movie; it's just an awfully impersonal one, with plenty of spectacular effects hardly justifying the cardboard characters, insipid dialogue and stone-cold direction. The film obviously hopes to be another Titanic, but the love triangle comprised of pilots Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett and nurse Kate Beckinsale couldn't possibly be duller. Showing at the Coca-Cola Film Festival at the Fox Theatre Aug. 12 at 7 p.m. -- MATT BRUNSON
PETITES FRERES (1999) Talia is 13 years old and already battle-weary from fighting with her mean stepfather when she runs away from home, taking her beloved dog Kim with her. She meets up with a group of four boys her age involved in a gang. Eventually Talia and her gang of "petites freres" find real friendship and common humanity in the seemingly desperate surroundings. Aug. 10-16 at cinéfest.
THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (R) The cult classic of cult classics, the 1975 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. It's all fun and games until Meatloaf gets killed. Dress as your favorite character and participate in this musical on acid. Fridays at midnight, Lefont Plaza Theatre, 1049 Ponce De Leon Ave., and Saturday at midnight at Blackwell Star Cinema, 3378 Canton Road, Marietta.
SHREK 1/2 (PG) DreamWorks' fractured fairy tale which both soars and suffers from its own subversive humor, as a crude, wisecracking ogre (voiced by Mike Myers) makes a reluctant knight errant in a quest to rescue an enchanted princess (Cameron Diaz). Shrek's computer-animated charms get hexed by too much outhouse comedy, too many pop references and far too much of Eddie Murphy as a talking donkey. Showing the Coca-Cola Film Festival at the Fox Theatre Aug. 12 at 3 p.m. --CH
A.I.: ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (PG-13) Steven Spielberg brings to light a long-developed Stanley Kubrick project about an android boy (Haley Joel Osment) who aspires to be human. Spielberg gives the first act a poetic precision evocative of the late filmmaker's cerebral style, but subsequent sections uncomfortably blend elements of Pinocchio and Blade Runner, losing some of its pristine storytelling control. -- CH
ALL ABOUT ADAM (R) Adam (Stuart Townsend) meets a waitress (Kate Hudson) and then proceeds to seduce her, her two sisters and even her brother. Also starring A.I.'s Frances O'Connor. Directed by Gerard Stembridge, written for the screen by Gerard Stembridge.
AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS 1/2 (PG-13) Instead of leading lady, Julia Roberts is merely one cog in an ensemble that does its best to provide direction to a rambling scenario. John Cusack and Catherine Zeta-Jones portray a movie star couple whose careers have faltered ever since their separation. With one more joint project yet to be released, the studio head (Stanley Tucci) figures that the best publicity would be to get them back together, so he hires a crafty press agent (Billy Crystal) to orchestrate their reconciliation at the press junket. Engaging but not especially involving, America's Sweethearts handily wins this summer's Middlebrow Champion trophy. -- MB
THE ANNIVERSARY PARTY 1/2 (R) Jennifer Jason Leigh and Alan Cumming wrote, directed and star in this zeitgeisty psychodrama of a hip Hollywood couple and their high-powered friends. Their evening of celebration turns into an ecstasy-fueled meltdown where clothes come off, truths get told and everyone undoubtedly wakes up with an ugly "what did I say?" hangover. Though there is plenty of emoting on display, the film often feels like a keyhole glimpse into the reality of life in a Hollywood fishbowl, as well as the more universal anxieties about faithfulness, aging, children and career. -- FELICIA FEASTER
CRAZY/BEAUTIFUL (PG-13) Blending typical teen fare of Romeo-and-Juliet-style star-crossed lovers with real insight into crumbling family values and an ennui-adrift middle-class, this teen love story of an ambitious Mexican-American kid (Jay Hernandez) and a self-destructive rich girl (Kirsten Dunst) is more thematically complicated and respectful of its players than the usual bubble- headed teen chow.-- FF
DR. DOLITTLE 2 (PG) Eddie Murphy's 1998 smash, Dr. Dolittle, was a tiresome, tepid affair in which the good doctor spent most of the running time dealing with animals with a fondness for toilet humor. This mediocrity of a sequel is less strident, with Dr. Dolittle helping various critters save their forest from unscrupulous land developers (played by Jeffrey Jones and Kevin Pollak). Locating laughs in this film is like finding anything of value while panning at a mountain tourist attraction: There are some modest rewards here and there, but they hardly seem worth the effort. -- MB
EVERYBODY'S FAMOUS! 1/2 (R) Much of this film, set within an economically depressed Flemish community is light, escapist drivel about a sullen teenager whose starry-eyed father thinks she can become Belgium's next pop music sensation. But there is a real sense of desperation and pathos behind this working-class father's effort to help his daughter escape his own dreary fate in director Dominique Deruddere's hash of social commentary and light comedy.-- FF
EVOLUTION 1/2 (PG-13) Alien life forms crash-land in Arizona and begin to take over, and while several of the otherworldly critters are fun to watch, the human players (including David Duchovny and Julianne Moore) are burdened with nondescript roles. This comedy's greatest problem is the that the screenplay simply isn't funny. Everyone tries hard but the end result is like a bad TV sitcom with a lot of bathroom humor added to lure teens. -- MB
THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS 1/2 (PG-13). This loud, overblown B-movie about illegal street racing goes nowhere but gets there fast. Director Rob Cohen offers a handful of nail-biting set pieces, particularly the opening race and a climactic truck chase a la The Road Warrior. But though Vin Diesel makes a magnetic lead, Furious is bumper-to-bumper with bad dialogue, poor logic and clichéd characters. -- CH
FINAL FANTASY: THE SPIRITS WITHIN (PG-13) Unbelievable imagery and kick-ass action sequences trump trippy-dippy dialogue and arbitrary plotting in this all-CGI adaptation of the popular video role- playing game, the first such film to be brought to the big screen by the game's creator (in this case, Hironobu Sakaguchi). The eerily convincing digital actors are voiced by the likes of Steve Buscemi, Ming Na, James Woods and Alec Baldwin, who is ironically much more life-like as a computerized cartoon. -- EDDY VON MUELLER
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH (R) A fantastic, not-to-be-missed debut film from John Cameron Mitchell (adapting his off-Broadway play) who stars in this audacious rock musical as an East German transsexual nursing a broken heart as he plays abysmal rock gigs in restaurants and ice cream parlors across the country. --FF
HIMALAYA (NR) Featuring a cast of mostly non- professionals, the film tells the story of a generational power struggle for the leadership of a tiny mountain village. Its proud old chief and a headstrong young caravaner clash as they make their annual salt delivery trek across the Himalayas. Directed by Eric Valli, the film is spoken in Tibetan with English subtitles. Stars Thilen Lhondup, Gurgon Kyap and Lhakpa Tsamchoe.
IMAX Journey Into Amazing Caves (R) Nancy Aulenbach of Norcross, a cave rescue specialist, and Dr. Hazel Barton, a British microbiologist, explore caves in Arizona, Greenland and the Yucatan in search of extremophiles, "microbes which thrive in the harshest of conditions." Through Sept. 3.
OCEAN OASIS (NR) Though indifferently structured, this portrait of the ecology of Baja California and the Sea of Cortes captures undersea life as never before and surfaces briefly to check out the desert and the mountains. With incredible cinemato-graphy, even by Imax standards, the images are so sharp you can look tiny fish in the eye and read personalities into their facial expressions. -- SW Through Jan. 1, 2002. Fernbank Museum of Natural History IMAX Theater.
JURASSIC PARK III 1/2 (PG-13) Sam Neill returns as paleontologist Alan Grant, who finds himself once again stranded on an island overrun with genetically engineered dinosaurs. This time, his companions include a divorced couple (William H. Macy and Tea Leoni) searching the island for their missing son; among their adversaries are some familiar faces (namely, those Velociraptors) as well as some new predators. The extended sequence involving the flying Pteranodons is exciting, but the rest is awkward, repetitive and often laughable. The acting is negligible, with Leoni especially annoying. -- MB
KISS OF THE DRAGON (R) 1/2 Romeo Must Die's ass-kicker Jet Li plays a Chinese intelligence officer chased all over Paris by corrupt French cops. The propulsive action scenes reflect the signature style of producer Luc Besson (director of La Femme Nikita), but the brutal treatment of Bridget Fonda's junkie-ho character can make the film too ugly to be fun. -- CH
LARA CROFT: TOMB RAIDER (PG-13) This picture has its strong points, including a perfectly cast protagonist and a couple of set pieces that deliver the goods. But the story -- did it really take six people to come up with this malarkey? The script concerns itself with Lara's involvement with a shady cabal that seeks to control the world by gaining possession of a mystical medallion with the power to turn a mere mortal into a god. Viewers expecting wall-to-wall action will be surprised that a great chunk of the running time is filled with dull chitchat. -- MB
LEGALLY BLONDE 1/2 (PG-13) Reese Witherspoon, determined to show that her award- winning turn in Election was no fluke, plays Elle Woods, a pampered California girl whose Harvard-bound boyfriend (Matthew Davis) dumps her for not being "serious" enough. Determined to win him back, Elle also enrolls at Harvard and draws upon her long-dormant intelligence to make her mark at the university. Feeding from a script that manages to make some salient points about getting beyond surface appearances to determine one's worth, Witherspoon brings a surprising amount of humanity to a role that could have deflated in less sturdy hands. -- CH
MADE (R). Vince Vaughn and writer-director Jon Favreau reprise their winning comic teamwork from Swingers, here playing aspiring boxers in L.A. who take a mysterious job for the Mob in New York. Vaughn's cluelessness as a would-be "playa" leads to many inspired, cringe-inducing confrontations, and though there's an unnecessarily serious subplot with a little girl, otherwise Made makes the grade. -- CH
THE MAN WHO CRIED (R) A Russian refugee (Christina Ricci) raised in England tries to find her long-lost father on the eve of World War II in a film that's more satisfying as a survey of operatic, gypsy and Jewish musical traditions than a conventional story. Cate Blanchett and John Turturro enliven the proceedings, but director Sally Potter seems determined to keep all emotions in check, giving little dialogue to Ricci and almost none to Johnny Depp as a smoldering gypsy horseman. -- CH
MOULIN ROUGE 1/2 (PG-13) Romeo + Juliet director Baz Luhrman whips into a fabulous frenzy this spastic post-modern musical about an impoverished writer (Ewan McGregor) in love with a consumptive courtesan (Nicole Kidman) in a bizarre rock 'n' roll version of late 19th-century Paris. Dazzling design and dizzying technique more or less compensate for an unsatisfying story and too many smugly hip in-jokes. Feel free to sing along; 95 percent of the lyrics are lifted from songs you already know. -- EDDY VON MUELLER
ORIGINAL SIN (R) A wealthy Cuban tycoon (Antonio Banderas) in the early 1900s discovers that his young bride (Angelina Jolie) is trouble. Directed by Michael Cristofer. Based upon the novel, Waltz into Darkness, by Cornell Woolrich.
PLANET OF THE APES 1/2 (PG-13) The best quality of Tim Burton's "revisit" to the classic 1968 film are the apes themselves, which have expressive, realistic make-up, cleverly conceived body language and fine representations from Tim Roth and Helena Bonham Carter. But though Burton reaches for an epic scope, the storytelling feels rushed and sloppy, with its anti-racism message presented with the heaviest possible hand. -- CH
POOTIE TANG (PG-13) Adapted from HBO's "The Chris Rock Show," Pootie Tang (Lance Crouther) is a crime fighter, recording artist and hero to children. He must battle the evil Dick Lecter, CEO of a huge corporation that tries to get kids to smoke, drink and eat fast food. Starring Andy Richter as a sleazy record executive, David Cross as a Pootie imitator and Chris Rock. Directed by Louis C.K.
THE PRINCESS AND THE WARRIOR 1/2 (R) Run Lola Run director Tom Tykwer returns to familiar territory of fate and chance and serves it up with a heap of visual flair in this tale of two damaged lovers. But Tykwer is a little on the lightweight side to be dealing in such grandiose fare, and his film can seem more like melodramatic hipster fiddling than the deep thoughts the director thinks he's dishing. Directed by Tom Tykwer. -- FF
THE PRINCESS DIARIES (G) 1/2 Director Garry Marshall returns with an adorable yet predictable remake of Pretty Women without the leather. When the crown of the fictional country Genovia needs a successor, Queen Clarisse Renaldi (Julie Andrews) shocks her estranged granddaughter (Anne Hathaway) with the news of her royal blood. The reluctant princess must choose between staying a normal teen or accepting the royal crown. -- P'NINA MOSSMAN
THE ROAD HOME 1/2 (G) His father's death prompts a narrator to recall the story of his parent's courtship in a remote Chinese village in this nostalgic, bittersweet film by China's Zhang Yimou, one of the living masters of color and composition. Crouching Tiger's Zhang Ziyi plays the young mother-to-be in a simple, poetic story with one gorgeous rural image after another. -- CH
RUSH HOUR 2 (PG-13) Director Brett Ratner returns with a sequel to his blockbuster movie Rush Hour. As seen at the end of the first film, Detective James Carter (Chris Tucker) travels back to Hong Kong with his new friend, Detective Lee (Jackie Chan). There, they fight Chinese crooks, and end up back in Los Angeles and Las Vegas. Roselyn Sanchez plays an undercover U.S. Secret Service agent.
SCARY MOVIE 2 1/2 (R) After a modestly amusing takeoff on The Exorcist with James Woods, the story proper finds a smarmy professor (Tim Curry) inviting a group of college students to spend a weekend in a haunted house. While there, gay Ray (Shawn Wayans) turns the tables on a demonic clown, pothead Shorty (Marlon Wayans) gets smoked by a monstrous marijuana plant, and dopey Alex (Tori Spelling) gives an invisible entity a blowjob. If all this sounds rather desperate, you don't know the half of it. -- MB
THE SCORE 1/2 (R) An often ho-hum heist picture that happens to have some of the greatest actors of three generations. Director Frank Oz constructs some tense set-pieces and Edward Norton offers a technically proficient rendition of a mentally disabled man, but for Robert De Niro and Marlon Brando to meet on-screen in a cliched caper movie is an enormous waste of potential. --CH
SEXY BEAST (R) A stylish debut from video director Jonathan Glazer, in which a gangster (Ray Winstone) whose idyllic retirement in Spain is interrupted when his psychopathic boss (Ben Kingsley) demands he perform one more heist. The film has attitude to burn, though its two poorly fitted acts and smug slavery to flashiness makes it feel more like a pop flash in the pan than endduring filmmaking. -- FF
In the latest 'Emory Looks at Hollywood' episode, Judith Evans Grubbs, Emory Professor of Roman…
"In the movies' worst scene..." should be "movie's"
--freelance copy editor, available for hire
I saw this headline before watching the movie yesterday, but this movie was way better…