At the movies
City of Men
Growing up in a Brazilian ghetto culture dictated by violence and run by street gangs, two teenage boys who have become close as brothers find themselves on opposite sides of a gang war. Review in Friday's Today section. (R)
The Other Boleyn Girl
Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson play sisters Anne and Mary Boleyn, who become rivals when they are driven by their father and uncle to advance the family's status by courting the affections of King Henry VIII. Review on Page 22. (PG-13)
Christina Ricci plays a woman suffering from a "curse" who sets out to free herself of a lifelong bad-luck streak and find her true self. Review on Page 21. (PG)
The latest Will Ferrell comedy has him as the owner/coach/player of a basketball team in the 1970s who rallies his teammates to make their NBA dreams come true. Review in Friday's Today section. (R)
Strange Wilderness 1/2
The stoner crew of a wildlife show is running it into cancellation, until a tip about the whereabouts of Bigfoot sends them to Ecuador. The movie is mostly a bummer.
Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert 1/2
Originally scheduled for a one-week run, this specially-priced concert movie, screened in digital 3D, will now remain in theaters until EVERY tween girl in the U.S. has seen it at least once. The talented and likable Cyrus plays herself and her TV alter ego on stage.
A concert film of the rock band taken from performances in Argentina, Mexico, Chile and Brazil from their Vertigo tour.
Parental guidance suggested.
The Spiderwick Chronicles
Based on the children's fantasy series about children who uncover the truth about their new home -- a secluded old house owned by a great-great aunt -- and the fantastic creatures that inhabit it. For all its fantasy, the movie feels nicely rooted in the real world, thanks to a smart adaptation, Mark Waters' direction, and the actors, particularly Freddie Highmore in the dual role as the twins Simon and Jared.
Parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under age 13.
Be Kind Rewind
Jack Black and Mos Def star as friends who go to unusual lengths in keeping a loyal, if elderly, video store customer when, after accidentally erasing the old VHS tapes, they decide to re-create and re-film every movie she rents. Director Michel Gondry's movie could have been a clever, biting satire about pop culture but instead feels too fluffy and sweet.
The Bucket List 1/2
Director Rob Reiner's comic drama puts him back in commercial, if not artistic form. The movie's easily accessible, with Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, as mismatched, terminally ill men who become buddies, who elevate a story overloaded with clichd life lessons.
A soon-to-be divorced dad answers hard questions from his daughter about his past relationships with three women. It's a surprisingly clever romantic comedy that starts brightly but unfortunately loses its spark at the end.
The Eye 1/2
The latest homely Hollywood remake of an Asian horror film finds Jessica Alba starring as an unfortunate woman who sees frightening images after her sight is restored -- courtesy of her haunted donor -- through transplant surgery.
Fool's Gold 1/2
Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson star as a former couple who meet again when he, a good-natured, surf bum-turned-treasure hunter, convinces her boss, a millionaire, to take his mega-yacht on a search for a missing treasure. This romantic comedy has a certain buoyancy that manages to keep it afloat.
A young man with the ability to teleport anywhere in the world finds himself in a war between "jumpers" and those who have sworn to kill them. This movie is all concept and zero substance.
A whip-smart teen, confronted with an unplanned pregnancy, tries to find a "perfect" set of parents for her unborn child in an affluent couple. It's a smart and hip comedy, filled with Diablo Cody's Oscar-winning dialogue, and winning performances.
Meet the Spartans
From the guys who saw "300" and made "Epic Movie" comes an equally epic satire where the mighty warriors fall victim to parody. Celebrity not-so-lookalikes and unfunny reality-show takeoffs vie for our attention and gag reflex.
The coming-of-age story of a precocious Iranian girl who lives with her family during the Islamic Revolution. Adapted from Marjane Satrapi's graphic novels about her own life, it's a colorful autobiography rendered in crisp black-and-white animation.
Step Up 2: The Streets 1/2
In this sequel to the 2006 hit, a rebellious street dancer finds herself fighting to fit in at an elite dance school. Hot girl, ripped guy, dazzling dancing, irresistible music -- it's all on the menu again.
Eight strangers with eight different points of view try to unlock the one truth behind an assassination attempt on the president. Rooted in today's terror-wary consciousness, the movie's a reminder that things are not always what they seem.
Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins 1/2
Martin Lawrence stars as a successful Hollywood self-help guru who returns home to his crazy but lovable Southern family to help celebrate his parents' 50th wedding anniversary. It's movie is as predictable as they come.
Witless Protection No stars
Larry the Cable Guy plays a small-town sheriff who gets caught up protecting the beautiful key witness in a high-stakes crime case. This movie's a pure waste of time. The blue-collar comic's lowbrow antics are no more honest than the implants on a Hollywood starlet.
Restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.
Adapted from Ian McEwen's book, a servant's son falls in love with a upper-class woman in 1935 Britain, just as her teenage sister falsely accuses him of sexually assaulting their cousin. It's a gripping film, with fine performances by Keira Knightley, James McAvoy and Saoirse Ronan. Even the occasional artiness can't detract from the painful events at this story's core.
Kicked out of prep school and going to public school for the first time, a rich kid becomes the self-appointed psychiatrist to the student body, working out of the boys' restroom. Despite the occasionally fine bit of acting and filmmaking, the comedy's script falls flat and strains so hard to be edgy, it nearly pulls a muscle.
George Clooney stars as a shadowy fixer with a legal New York empire. The film is a fulsome exploration of the legal thriller genre, and the trio of actors at its core -- Clooney, Tom Wilkinson and Oscar winner Tilda Swinton -- put in tautly realized and mature performances.
No Country for Old Men
The Coen brothers' latest film is set in West Texas, as a man on the run with a suitcase full of money is pursued by a number of individuals. In adapting Cormac McCarthy's novel about crime and carnage along the Rio Grande, the Coens stay mostly faithful to its structure while maintaining much of the book's rhythmically clipped, colorful dialogue. It's vintage stuff for the writing-directing team and their best work in a while -- good enough to win them Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay Oscars, plus get Javier Bardem a Best Supporting Actor nod.
Sylvester Stallone returns as the iconic action hero who ventures into a brutal Burmese war zone to rescue captured aid workers. The movie is, for most of its fairly brief running time, a bloodbath punctuated by occasional bouts of clumsy dialogue. But it does have its own kind of blockheaded poetry.
Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney play siblings -- he's a neurotic college professor and she's a struggling playwright -- who put their already arrested lives on hold when they have to help their father (Philip Bosco), who is slowly being consumed by dementia. Despite its dark humor, the film tackles the tough topics of aging, frailty, humiliation and death with a delicate and relatable touch.
There Will Be Blood 1/2
Director Paul Thomas Anderson's latest offering is a masterfully told epic tale of family, faith, power and oil set on the incendiary frontier of California's turn-of-the-century petroleum boom. A winner of two Oscars, including Daniel Day-Lewis for Best Actor, and Best Cinematography.
A wide-eyed, would-be animated princess becomes human when she is banished by a wicked queen to real-life New York City. (PG)
The Golden Compass 1/2
A girl finds herself on an epic quest to save an alternative world where people's souls manifest themselves as animals. (PG-13)
I Am Legend 1/2
Will Smith stars as a military scientist whose immunity to a deadly virus leaves him stranded in Manhattan with only his trusted German shepherd for companionship -- that is, until the infected crazies show up. (PG-13)
One Missed Call
A woman is traumatized when she witnesses the gruesome deaths of two friends, who were both alerted to their impending deaths via chilling cell phone messages. (PG-13)
The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: A VeggieTales Movie 1/2
Three animated vegetable pals set sail for adventure in the 17th century, as they go into battle to rescue a royal family from an evil tyrant. (G)
Stephen King's The Mist
A small-town community fights to survive when they come under vicious attack from creatures prowling in a thick, unnatural mist. (R)
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Tim Burton's adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's classic Broadway musical about a homicidal barber out for grisly revenge during the time of Victorian England. (R)
The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep
An extremely sweet tale about loyalty and friendship as a lonely Scottish boy discovers an enchanted egg which eventually hatches and grows up to be the Loch Ness monster. (PG)
ART HOUSE | REVIVAL
THE DORIS DUKE THEATRE, HONOLULU ACADEMY OF ARTS
900 S. Beretania St.; $7 general; $6 seniors, students, military; $5 Academy members (532-8768):
Highlight on Art: The Cool School
At 1 p.m. Friday.
The Films of Frederick Wiseman
Feature and schedule on Page 10. Friday through Tuesday.
The Color of Love
At 1 and 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and 1 p.m. March 6.
MOVIE MUSEUM 3566 Harding Ave.; $5, $4 members; reservations recommended (735-8771):
At 12:30, 3, 5:30 and 8 p.m. Friday.
At 12:30, 3, 5:30 and 8 p.m. Saturday.
Death at a Funeral
At 2, 4, 6 and 8 p.m. Sunday.
The Secret Life of Words
At 12:30, 3, 5:30 and 8 p.m. Monday.
Into the Wild
At 12:30, 3, 5:30 and 8 p.m. March 6.