EAT PRAY LOVE 2 stars (PG-13) Freshly-divorced travel writer Liz Gilbert (Julia Roberts) tries to get her groove back by spending a year in Italy, India and Bali. Based on Gilbert’s bestselling middlebrow memoir, Eat Pray Love casts an innately self-conscious movie star as a self-absorbed woman, so it’s like 140 minutes of “But enough about me — what do you think of me?” Roberts gives an appealing performance and “Glee” co-creator Ryan Murphy helms a beautifully-photographed, at times sensuous film that nevertheless holds almost no dramatic interest. Maybe Blink Yawn Doze would be a better title. — Holman
THE EXPENDABLES A throwback action flick on roids, The Expendables showcases an All-Star cast led by Sylvestor Stallone who might be weathered and old but still sports a young heart. The bad boys work with the Feds to try to usurp an evil dictator. In the process, they get fucked over at least twice, battle- and kill- an entire army, and save the girls (without so much as a kiss). Though this might not be the best date movie, the Rambo and friends feature is straight jacked.
PATRICK, AGE 1.5 (NR) In this Swedish comedy, a gay couple reacts with surprise when their adopted 1.5 year old baby turns out to be a sullen 15 year-old with homophobic attitudes.
SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD 4 stars (PG-13) In Edgar Wright’s adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s graphic novles, slacker bassist Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera) must battle and defeat “seven evil exes” to win the girl of his dreams (Mary Elizabeth Winstead). Satirizing the indie-rock scene and showcasing comic book and video game effects, Scott Pilgrim’s stylish hyperactivity can make the film feel cluttered, overpopulated and exhausting. Between the delightfully crazy fight scenes, Scott Pilgrim takes a surprisingly close and complex look at dating, relationships and personal integrity, sort of like Woody Allen’s Manhattan meets Mortal Kombat. — Holman
VAMPIRES SUCK (PG-13) Had enough of vampires? Didn't think so. From "the guys that couldn't sit through another vampire movie" comes this comedy about teen angst- and necrophilia- to the max. Becca is torn between two guys who have deadly secrets that are easily overshadowed by their sex appeal. And their battle for Becca's love leads to a final showdown prom night where the claws (and fangs) are coming out.
ALIEN: THE DIRECTOR’S CUT 4 stars (1979) The skeleton crew of an factory spaceship investigate an otherworldly phenomenon and find themselves stalked by a nightmarish being. Director Ridley Scott and designer H.G. Giger offered a terrifying, groundbreaking vision of the terrors of space that’s more than just a combination of 2001: A Space Odyssey and Jaws. Splatter Cinema. Aug. 13-15, 9:30 p.m. $8. Plaza Theatre, 1049 Ponce de Leon Ave. 404-873-1939. www.plazaatlanta.com.
ATLANTA HORROR FILM FESTIVAL (NR) The fourth annual celebration of creepy genres presents 100 features and short films that provide more than just gore. Among the undead-related highlights are the feature Zombie Dearest and the short “Zombies and Cigarettes.” Atlanta Horror Film Festival. Aug. 13-15. Spring4th Center, 728 Spring St. AtlantaHorrorFilmFest.com
9500 LIBERTY (NR) Given three and a half stars by Roger Ebert, this documentary explores the debate over illegal immigration by examining a high-tempered debate over a law passed in Virginia’s Prince William County. Fri., Aug. 13, 7:30 p.m. $8. Plaza Theatre, 1049 Ponce de Leon Ave. 404-873-1939. www.plazaatlanta.com.
THE DISAPPEARANCE OF ALICE CREED 3 stars (R ) A pair of British ex-cons (Eddie Marsan and Martin Compston) meticulously plan the kidnapping of a wealthy young woman (Gemma Arterton) in this Hitchcockian thriller from director J Blakeson. Until the last act, most of Alice Creed takes place in three rooms, but Blakeson builds tension and reveals twists like a sharp student of Harold Pinter’s Theater of Menace. The film unsparingly depicts the abuse of a woman, but also implies the audience and filmmaker have a voyeuristic complicity in the story. — Holman
THE OTHER GUYS 3 stars (PG-13) With New York’s super-detectives Danson and Highsmith (Dwayne Johnson and Samuel L. Jackson) out of commission, disgraced hot-head Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg) and meek forensic accountant Allen Gamble (Will Ferrell) seize a chance to escape desk duty and break a huge case involving a sleazy financier (Steve Coogan). For about an hour, The Other Guys comes on like comedic gangbusters, with Wahlberg’s misplaced machismo providing a good foil for Ferrell’s increasingly unhinged antics. The cop clichés give Ferrell and director Adam McKay (Anchorman, Talladega Nights) plenty to riff on for a while, but once the good gags peter out, the lumbering action scenes prove less than arresting. — Holman
RESTREPO (R ) This acclaimed documentary follows writer Sebastian Junger and photographer Tim Weatherington followed the 2nd platoon, Battle Company, 173rd Airborne, during their yearlong deployment in Afghanistan’s Korengal Valley in 2008.
STEP UP 3D
Following the same tradition as the Bring it On movies, the Step Up series takes on another spin as street dancers (Rick Malambri, Sharni Vinson) team up with a freshman (Adam G. Sevani) from New York University for a high-stakes showdown against the world's best hip-hop dancers.
WILD GRASS 2 stars (NR) A lost and found wallet leads to romantic possibilities between a single, middle-aged dentist (Sabine Azema) and an unemployed husband (Andre Dussolier) with a mysterious past. Director Alain Resnais is a legendary French filmmaker and auteur of such artsy pictures as Last Year at Marienbad.
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