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LIKE MIKE (PG) That's Mr. Wow to you! Lil Bow Wow plays an adolescent boy who, when struck by lightning while holding a pair of Michael Jordan's sneakers, becomes a basketball star. (Hey, is it any more far-fetched than being bitten by a genetically-modified spider?) This family sports fantasy include such unexpected supporting players as Crispin Glover, Anne Meara and Eugene Levy.
LILO & STITCH (PG) A fluffy but destructive alien mutation hides from his intergalactic pursuers by passing as the pet of a lonely Hawaiian girl. Imagine the Tasmanian Devil impersonating E.T. and you'll have a sense of the Looney Tunes level of slapstick. The schmaltz gets high enough to surf on, but the characters are appealing and Disney replaces its usual atrocious pop songs with Elvis hits.--CH
LITTLE SECRETS (PG) Evan Rachel Wood is a gifted young violinist who spends her summer practicing for symphony auditions while her friends attend summer camp. As the neighborhood secret keeper, she lends an objective ear to neighborhood kids needing to assuage their guilty consciences. But Emily has some secrets of her own.
THE MASTER OF DISGUISE (PG) Test your Dana Carvey tolerance in this comedy from the former cast member of "Saturday Night Live." Here plays a nebbishy quick change artist whose retinue includes old ladies, George W. Bush and a guy who looks like a turtle. Surely one of his alter egos must be funny. Right?
MEN IN BLACK II (PG-13) Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones return as attitudinal alien-busting secret agents in this mind-bogglingly, jaw-droppingly egregious sequel to their somewhat diverting 1997 cash cow. A negligible "plot" gives them something to squawk about amid the usual barrage of computer-generated effects, but the movie exists most appreciably to serve the greed of its responsible parties. The best to said of the monumental mess is that it's all over in a (suspiciously) brief 88 minutes. --BO
MINORITY REPORT (PG-13) A half-century from now, high-tech police can arrest perpetrators before they commit their crimes, and officer Tom Cruise believes in the system until it sets its sights on him. Director Steven Spielberg offers a brilliant extrapolation of future law-enforcement and marketing techniques, which inform many of suspense sequences while inspiring ideas about privacy and guilt. Some jarring shifts in tone (an Indiana Jones-esque fight here, a gross-out sight gag there) hinder the narrative and thematic momentum, and the director's emulation of 1940s film noir results in both highly mannered acting and superbly moody, filtered cinematography. --CH
MR. DEEDS (PG-13) Adam Sandler returns to form -- a form without shape, substance or style -- in this remake of Frank Capra's Mr. Deeds Goes to Town. Expect over-the-ttop beatings, tired slapstick and Sandler's tired naive-but-pure-hearted-idiot routine as he plays a pizza shop owner who gets a $10 billion inheritance and unwittingly becomes the laughing-stock of New York. Maybe the movie will make Winona Ryder realize that if she's going to revive her flagging career, she may have to tackle a serious, meaty, potentially naked role. (See Halle Berry.)--Steve Fennessy
MOSTLY MARTHA (PG) German writer-director Sandra Nettelbeck presents a romantic comedy about a headstrong female chef who butts heads with both her eight year-old niece and an Italian sous-chef. If Hollywood remakes it, Meg Ryan will probably star.
MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING (PG) While not as accomplished as Mira Nair's Monsoon Wedding,- this is nevertheless a gratifying romantic comedy that gently tweaks stereotypes even as its characters wallow in them. Adapted by Nia Vardalos from her own one-woman show, the film centers on the plight of a 30-year-old lonelyheart (Vardalos) who risks the wrath of her family when she falls for a non-Greek (John Corbett).--MB
ONE HOUR PHOTO (R) Former music video director wunderkind Mark Romanek upends the usual serial killer thriller plot with a disturbing investigation into the ennui of modern life as seen through the eyes of an anonymous megastore photo developer (Robin Williams) who nurtures an unhealthy obsession with the deliriously happy photos he develops for one all-American family. --FF
PANDORA'S BOX (R) Atlanta's own director/producer team of Rob Hardy and Will Packer present this locally made thriller about a psychiatrist drawn into a deadly game of cat and mouse. With Michael Jai White, Monica Calhoun and Joey Lawrence.
POSSESSION (PG-13) A pair of young English professors (Gwyneth Paltrow and Aaron Eckhart) unearth a secret affair between two famed Victorian poets (Jeremy Northam and Jennifer Ehle) in caustic director Neil LaBute's attempted change of pace. Whenever he strays from the film's literary mystery, he gets bogged down in gratuitous American-British put-downs and facile insights into the human heart, with one plot point hinging on whether Paltrow will literally let her hair down.--CH
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