THE EYE (NR) Fans of The Ring will want to set their eyes on the latest import in current wave of top-notch Japanese ghost stories. An operation allows a blind woman to see for the first time -- but also gives her the ability to see supernatural entities. Catch it before the inevitable watered-down Hollywood remake.
THE HARD WORD (R) Guy Pearce and Rachel Griffiths explore their dark sides in a hard-boiled caper flick about three brothers who rob banks even while they're in prison. Writer-director Scott Roberts, who has obviously seen Guy Ritchie's crime films, starts seriously and lets the humor sneak up on you in unexpected ways. Neither Pearce, who seems to be channeling Mel Gibson, nor blond-wigged Griffiths totally nails what they're trying to do, but their attempt is fun to watch. --Steve Warren
HOW TO DEAL (PG-13) Not a primer in playing cards but a youth-skewing romance starring Mandy Moore as a cynical teen who doesn't believe in love -- until she meets studly Trent Ford. "West Wing" fans will note the presence of Allison Janney, who co-stars as Moore's mom.
JOHNNY ENGLISH (PG) Rowan Atkinson of "Bean" and "Black Adder" fame plays a bumbling James Bond wannabe in this slapstick spy spoof, featuring John Malkovich as the sinister Pascal Sauvage and Natalie Imbruglia as the love interest.
SHANGHAI GHETTO (NR) When America and Great Britain denied Jewish refugees entrance to their countries as Hitler's extermination of the Jews mounted, it was the far-flung city of Shanghai which offered them shelter. Told from the vantage of five Jewish refugees -- children at the time -- who found a safe haven in Shanghai, Dana Janklowicz-Mann and Amir Mann's documentary adds fresh material to the Jewish experience, even if it honors fairly stodgy and unimaginative documentary storytelling techniques. --Felicia Feaster
WASHINGTON HEIGHTS (R) Director Alfredo de Villa offers a slice of life in one of Manhattan's Cuban neighborhoods when an aspiring comic book artist must take over the family bodega after his father is shot in a hold-up. At Madstone Theaters Parkside.
ZUS & ZO (NR) This Dutch romantic comedy concerns the slapstick-ready scenario of a gay brother who stands to inherit a treasured Portuguese beachfront hotel, the Paradiso, if he marries. When Nino (Jacob Derwig) does become engaged, his three castrating sisters (Sylvia Poorta, Monic Hendrickx and Anneke Blok) spring into action to prevent the union. Various other storylines swirl around that molten core, from adultery to penile cancer to cross-dressing. For such a zany, action-packed film, Zus & Zo is surprisingly dull going.--FF
ANNA'S SUMMER (2001) (NR) Director Jeanine Meerapfel presents this tale of a Jewish daughter (Angela Molina), a Spanish mother and Greek father who makes a bittersweet homecoming to her family's home in Greece. Presented by Intown Jewish Life Center. July 20, 10:30 a.m., Lefont Garden Hills Cinema, 2835 Peachtree Road. $7. www.intownjlc.org
BETTER LUCK TOMORROW (R) A group of overachieving Asian-American teenagers deal with academic and extracurricular pressures by turning to petty crimes. For his directorial debut, Justin Lin doesn't let his stylistic flourishes distract from the film's original character portraits, although when the would-be gang dabbles in drugs and handguns, the film feels like its trying a little too hard to be Goodfellas in high school. Showing on a double feature with Charlotte Sometimes. Asian-American Film Week. July 18-24. Cinefest Georgia State University Student Center, Suite 211, 66 Courtland St. $5 ($3 until 5 pm) 404-651-2463.--CH
BLIND SPOT: HITLER'S SECRETARY (PG) Though shot in a minimalist style, with its camera trained on a woman as she sits in a room recollecting the eccentricities of her boss, Andre Heller and Othmar Schmiderer's documentary is nothing short of hypnotic. The secretary, employed by Adolf Hitler from 1942 until his suicide in 1945, gives a fascinating portrait of a man who could be both a paternal, considerate boss, an ordinary man with bizarre hang-ups and someone wholly out of touch with a grotesque reality he helped engineer. Peachtree Film Society. July 22 at 7:30 p.m. Lefont Garden Hills Cinema. 770-729-8487. www.peachtreefilm.org--FF
DAILIES V: UNIFIED FIELD THEORY (NR) PushPush Theater's latest collaboration of filmmakers with other artists presents nine loosely connected short films, all shot in Piedmont Park. July 17-20 and 24-27, 8 p.m. PushPush Theater, 1123 Zonolite Road. $10. 404-892-7876. www.pushpushtheater.com
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