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Short subjectives 

Capsule reviews of films by CL critics



Opening Wednesday
FEMME FATALE (R) Rebecca Romijn-Stamos plays a jewel thief who pulls off a heist at the Cannes Film Festival and is pursued by Antonio Banderas as a plucky paparazzo. Director Brian DePalma compares the film's twists to Mulholland Drive, but in this case that sounds more like a warning than an endorsement.



Opening Friday
ALL OR NOTHING (R) Secrets & Lies director Mike Leigh depicts the bedraggled, beaten-down lives of various neighbors in a working-class London housing estate in this bleak but not hopeless drama. Although the first half rambles without apparent point, a health crisis in the second half puts the roles and their relationships in sharp relief, while the entire cast gives deeply emotional, lived-in performances that feel free of artifice.--Curt Holman

8 MILE (R) Bratty rapper Eminem plays a struggling hip-hop artist loosely based on himself in this struggling-artist story from Academy Award-caliber director Curtis Hanson. Structured around a series of public rap "duels," the film plays like a Rocky or Karate Kid movie, only with profane rhymes substituting for fisticuffs. If not a versatile thespian, Eminem proves comfortable in front of the camera, and the film reveals a genuine interest in hip-hop culture and the impoverished Detroit setting.--CH

THE GREY ZONE (R) Tim Blake Nelson, director of O and co-star of O Brother, Where Art Thou? directs this drama about concentration camp inmates forced to work in the crematoriums. David Arquette and Steve Buscemi play prisoners and Harvey Keitel a Nazi officer.

REAL WOMEN HAVE CURVES (PG-13) Just graduated from high school, 18-year-old Ana (America Ferrera) finds her dreams of college squashed by her struggling Mexican-American family, which wants her to work to support the family. Concerned with a range of worthwhile issues, from overweight Ana's body image to cruel mother-daughter relationships and poverty, director Patricia Cardoso's film is certainly well-intentioned even if it often feels like the director is more concerned with spoon-feeding us her feel-good medicine than with anything close to reality.--Felicia Feaster



Duly Noted
IRREN IST MANNLICH (1996) (NR) In Sherry Hormann's light comedy, a happily complacent German businessman discovers that he's been infertile for years, thus making him wonder who's the natural father of his children. Nov. 6, 7 p.m., Goethe-Institut Atlanta, Colony Square, 1197 Peachtree St. $4 for non-members. 404-892-2388. www.goethe.de/uk/atl/enpfilm.htm.

NUTS FOR LOVE (1999) (NR) In Alberto Lecchi's feature, two young people (Ariadna Gil and Gaston Pauls) meet at an Argentine rock concert in 1975, and over the next 25 years their lives intersect as lovers, antagonists and friends against a backdrop of political turmoil. Latin American Film Festival. Nov. 8, 8 p.m. High Museum, Rich Auditorium. $5. 404-733-4570. www.high.org.

OUT ON FILM FESTIVAL IMAGE Film and Video Center presents the 15th anniversary festival of gay and lesbian film, which features more than 40 features, documentaries and short movies. Retrospective screenings include 1940's Turnabout, 1987's I've Heard the Mermaids Singing and 1975's Female Trouble, presented by director John Waters. Out on Film Festival. Nov. 6-10, Regal Hollywood 24 and other venues. 404-352-4225. www.outonfilm.com.

POSTHUMOUS MEMORIES (2000) (NR) Reginaldo Farias and Sonia Braga star in Andre Klotzel's fanciful comedy of a deceased, sardonic man who reflects on his life as a 19th-century dandy. Latin American Film Festival. Nov. 6, 8 p.m. Regal Hollywood 24. $5. 404-733-4570. www.high.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. It's all fun and games until Meatloaf gets killed. Dress as your favorite character and participate in this musical on acid. Midnight Fri. at Lefont Plaza Theatre and Sat. at Marietta Star Cinema.

TO LOVE TOO MUCH (2000) (NR) Karina Gidi won Best Actress at the 2001 Guadalajara Film Festival for playing an insecure woman who discovers the splendors of romantic love and Mexico as a country. Latin American Film Festival. Nov. 9, 8 p.m. High Museum, Rich Auditorium. $5. 404-733-4570. www.high.org.



Continuing
ABANDON (PG-13) Steve Gaghan, Oscar-winning director of Traffic, tries his hand at directing with this college thriller about a student (Katie Holmes) torn between her feelings for her mystery-man boyfriend (Charlie Hunnam) and an older detective (Benjamin Bratt).

AUTO FOCUS (R) Returning to his interest in loners governed by unreasonable obsessions, Paul Schrader's campy bio-picture Auto Focus is a very believable translation of how addiction replaces real life with an unquenchable need. Here the addiction is sex and the junkie is "Hogan's Heroes" TV star Bob Crane (Greg Kinnear), turned onto the joys of making amateur porn by techie buddy John Carpenter (the brilliantly sleazy Willem Dafoe) in this fascinating, at times penetrating, but just as often superficial and dismissive peek at a uniquely twisted life.--FF

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