Short Subjectives 

Capsule reviews of films by CL critics

Opening Wednesday
THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST (R) See review.

Opening Friday
THE BARBARIAN INVASIONS (R) In Canadian director Denys Arcand's follow-up to his 1986 The Decline of the American Empire, the same group of jaded, sexually adventurous intellectuals reunite around the bedside of Rémy (Rémy Girard), who is dying of cancer in an overcrowded, understaffed Montreal hospital. An unforgettable, moving film about dying, this near-masterpiece parallels Rémy's loss of faith with a post-Sept. 11 world that has also had its dreams and illusions shattered. Arcand's film takes you by surprise as its intellectual chattiness soon reveals a world defined by regret and doubt, where the only comfort seems to be the friends and family who remain. -- Felicia Feaster

THE BATTLE OF ALGIERS (1965) (NR) See review.

BUS 174 (NR) See review.

CLUB DREAD (R) The Broken Lizard troupe of comedy filmmakers (they produced and played in Super Troopers last year) returns for a scruffy, low-budget comedy about a slasher in a low-rent vacation spot. Bill Paxton plays a character called "Coconut Pete."

DIRTY DANCING HAVANA NIGHTS (PG-13) Full of eye and ear candy, this remake set in Cuba on the eve of Castro's revolution starts out as a guilty pleasure but leaves you feeling more pleasure than guilt. Romola Garai is the American teen who picks local Diego Luna for her partner in a dance contest. Politics stays in the background until the climax of what, like Footloose, is essentially a '50s drive-in flick with better production values. -- Steve Warren

TWISTED (R) A serial killer murders the one-night stands of a policewoman (Ashley Judd), who becomes the prime suspect. The standard-sounding thriller co-stars Samuel L. Jackson and is directed by Philip Kaufman of The Right Stuff and The Unbearable Lightness of Being.

Duly Noted
THE BIG ONE (1998) (R) Michael Moore's documentary of his Downsize This! book tour now looks like a mildly amusing placeholder between Roger & Me's economic indignation and Bowling for Columbine's gun culture inquiry. Moore pulls some provocative pranks that illustrate big corporations' indifference to the U.S. work force, but overall, the film, however funny and pointed, feels like a TV special prolonged for theatrical release. Feb. 27-March 4. Cinefest, GSU University Center, Suite 211, 66 Courtland St. $5 ($3 until 5 p.m.). 404-651-3565. -- Curt Holman

BOWLING FOR COLUMBINE (2002) (R) An often cruelly jocular agitprop documentary about an out-of-control American gun culture, Michael Moore's (Roger & Me) nightmare tour of America's covert foreign policy, Michigan Militia and NRA rallies, conspiratorial kooks and sleazy TV producers makes a good case for the hair-trigger viciousness of our eye-for-an-eye culture, even as it reduces painful, profound issues to irony-laced, laughable sport. Feb. 27-March 4. Cinefest, GSU University Center, Suite 211, 66 Courtland St. $5 ($3 until 5 p.m.). 404-651-3565. -- FF

GIRLHOOD (NR) This documentary from Oscar nominee Liz Garbus contrasts two young girls as they struggle to grow up in Baltimore. Feb. 26, 6:30 p.m. Auburn Avenue Research Library, 101 Auburn Ave. Free. 404-730-4001.

HIP HOP FILM FEST (NR) This festival of independent films energized by the sounds and sensibility of hip-hop includes the documentary Straight Outta Hunters Point, and Jails, Hospitals & Hip Hop, which features Danny Hoch portraying 10 disparate characters. Feb. 26. Cinefest, GSU University Center, Suite 211, 66 Courtland St. $5 ($3 until 5 p.m.). 404-651-3565. www.hiphopfilmfest.com.

MOSTLY MARTHA (2002) (PG) This enjoyably slick morsel of German foodie-fluff concerns a perfectionist Hamburg chef, Martha (Martina Gedeck), who finds cooking can't solve all of her problems when both a recently orphaned 8-year-old niece and a spirited, love-drunk Italian chef suddenly enter her life. More hash house cooking than haute cuisine, this one is a little overdone. Feb. 27, 7:30 p.m. Room 205, White Hall, Emory University. Free. www.edin-ga.org/grants.asp. -- FF

THE PRINCESS BRIDE (1987) (PG) A surprisingly ardent cult surrounds Rob Reiner's fractured fairy tale. The wispy, low-key humor gets a boost from Wallace Shawn's lisping villainy and the cheerful swashbuckling of Cary Elwes and Mandy Patinkin. Have fun storming the castle. March 3, 7 p.m. Mick's Bennett Street, 2110 Peachtree Road. Free with dinner. 404-355-7163. -- CH

TOUR ABROAD (1998) (NR) A gay Turkish folk singer and a deceased colleague's 11-year-old daughter bond as they travel to find the young girl's mother. Shown with the short film "Sevda Means Love." Young Turkish-German Cinema. March 3, 7 p.m. Goethe Institut Inter Nationes, 1197 Peachtree St., Colony Square. $4. 404-892-2388.

Continuing
THE ADVENTURES OF OCIEE NASH (G) Not to be confused with Eddie Murphy's The Adventures of Pluto Nash, this locally-filmed family picture follows the tomboyish title role (Skylar Day) from her father's Mississippi farm to her stuffy aunt's Asheville home in 1898. The novelty of seeing numerous Atlanta stage actors in extensive big-screen parts keeps you awake through this wholesome yet dull tale. --CH

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  • 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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