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genre

  • Action
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  • Romance
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quality

  • A+, A, A-
  • B+, B, B-
  • C+, C, C-
  • D+, D, D-
  • F+, F, F-

who's watching

  • My entire family
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age range

  • Kindergarten - 3rd grade
  • 4th - 6th grade
  • Middle school
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  • Mature High schooler
  • Adult
  • All Ages




Death at a Funeral

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, drug content, and some sexual humor
Movie Release Date:April 16, 2010
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, drug content, and some sexual humor
Movie Release Date: April 16, 2010

It feels like the world should come to a stop when someone dies, but unfortunately, it does not. And it feels like the confrontation with the eternal and the shock of grief should somehow make everyone behave, but unfortunately, it […]

The Eclipse

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some disturbing images
Movie Release Date:March 26, 2010
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some disturbing images
Movie Release Date: March 26, 2010

“The Eclipse” is a moody Irish thriller about a recently widowed teacher who is a volunteer at a local literary festival. Michael (a deeply moving Ciarán Hinds) is doing his best to stay strong for his children and his father-in-law, […]

District 13: Ultimatum

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some violence, language and drug material
Movie Release Date:February 5, 2010
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some violence, language and drug material
Movie Release Date: February 5, 2010

Cyril Raffaelli and David Belle make a sensationally appealing team in this follow-up to their hit film “District B13.” Belle is the creator of “parkour,” a stunt spectacular that turns an entire city into an obstacle course. It has become […]

Edge of Darkness

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong bloody violence and language
Movie Release Date:January 29, 2010
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong bloody violence and language
Movie Release Date: January 29, 2010

As he continues to work through personal issues that seem to require expiation through his characters on screen, Mel Gibson, plays a Tom Craven, a Boston cop out for more than justice after his daughter is murdered. His face deeply […]

Youth in Revolt

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content, language and drug use
Movie Release Date:January 8, 2010
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, language and drug use
Movie Release Date: January 8, 2010

Those who want to see the Michael Cera they know and love and those who want to see him do something else can both find what they are looking for in “Youth in Revolt,” based on the popular epistolary novels […]

Sherlock Holmes

posted by Nell Minow

Perhaps even the great detective himself could not solve the mystery of why Sherlock Holmes holds the Guinness Book of World Records title for having been portrayed on screen than any other fictional character, with more than 75 actors in […]

A Single Man

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some disturbing images and nudity/sexual content
Movie Release Date:December 11, 2009
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some disturbing images and nudity/sexual content
Movie Release Date: December 11, 2009

Designer Tom Ford has exquisite taste, and his first movie is an exquisite movie. Based on a story by Christopher Isherwood, as adapted by Ford, it is the story of one day in the life of a British literature professor […]

Old Dogs

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild rude humor
Movie Release Date:November 25, 2009
D
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild rude humor
Movie Release Date: November 25, 2009

At one point in this endlessly, excruciatingly un-funny non-comedy, Dan (Robin Williams) and Charlie (John Travolta) are at a camp-out with Dan’s seven-year-old twins. Everyone agrees that it’s all about the kids. And of course there’s nothing more fun for […]

Gentlemen Broncos

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some rude humor
Movie Release Date:November 6, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some rude humor
Movie Release Date: November 6, 2009

“Gentlemen Broncos” is about the fantasies of a 15 year old boy and it has some of the charm but all of the failings of those stories. The charm is its unguarded purity of emotion and unchecked enthusiasm for its […]

This is It

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some suggestive choreography and scary images
Movie Release Date:October 28, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some suggestive choreography and scary images
Movie Release Date: October 28, 2009

“This is It” is here to rescue us from the tabloids and remind us what true star power looks like. There are moments of aching sadness as we get a behind-the-scenes look at the concert tour that never happened, but […]

The Providence Effect

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild thematic elements
Movie Release Date:September 25, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild thematic elements
Movie Release Date: September 25, 2009

You often hear the expression “feel-good movie” and it usually refers to a heart-warming romantic comedy or maybe something with penguins. This is a real feel-good movie because it is a real story. A man with a passionate commitment to […]

Extract

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, sexual references and some drug use
Movie Release Date:September 4, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, sexual references and some drug use
Movie Release Date: September 4, 2009

The fans who have been waiting for a new workplace comedy as wickedly on target as Mike Judge’s cult classic “Office Space” will have to keep waiting. Judge’s new film has no red stapler, no TPS reports coversheet problems, and […]

It Might Get Loud

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild thematic elements, brief language and smoking
Movie Release Date:September 4, 2009
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild thematic elements, brief language and smoking
Movie Release Date: September 4, 2009

It goes to 11. Davis Guggenheim (“An Inconvenient Truth”) has made a documentary featuring three generations of guitar gods: Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin), The Edge (U2), and Jack White (The White Stripes). But it is not about the musicians. It […]

X Games 3D: The Movie

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for extreme sports action and accidents
Movie Release Date:August 21, 2009
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for extreme sports action and accidents
Movie Release Date: August 21, 2009

Kids, don’t try this at home. 3D is X-treme film-making and thus well suited to the X Games, hyper-intense, hyper-dangerous, hyper-what are they thinking? sports that are closer to stunts. Young men compete on skateboard, snowboard, and on dirt bikes […]

Bandslam

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some thematic elements and mild language
Movie Release Date:August 14, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some thematic elements and mild language
Movie Release Date: August 14, 2009

A little edgier than the “High School Musical” series and a little smarter than the usual tween fare, “Bandslam” is a refreshing late-summer treat for tweens, teens, and their families from the always-welcome Walden Media, a top provider of quality […]

Adam

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic material, sexual content and language
Movie Release Date:July 31, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic material, sexual content and language
Movie Release Date: July 31, 2009

Adam (Hugh Dancy), appropriately shares his name with the first man because even though he lives in contemporary Manhattan, he is in a very real way new to the world. He seems at once tightly wound and untethered. When he […]

G-Force

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild action and rude humor
Movie Release Date:July 24, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild action and rude humor
Movie Release Date: July 24, 2009

Top voice talent and good 3D computer graphics cannot make up for the fact that this film is utterly synthetic as well as crass, loud, and vulgar. Even at a brief running time of under 90 minutes, it overstays its […]

The Ugly Truth

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date:July 24, 2009
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content and language
Movie Release Date: July 24, 2009

There is little chemistry between co-stars Katherine Heigel and Gerard Butler in this charmless war of the sexes story, but there is even less chemistry between the two genres it tries to combine, the romantic comedy (sunny pop song over […]

My Sister’s Keeper

posted by Nell Minow

How far would you go to save your child’s life? How far should you go? Those are the questions posed — and largely ducked — in this film based on the best-selling book, My Sister’s Keeper, by Jodi Picoult. The […]

Earth

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:April 22, 2009
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: April 22, 2009

This stunning valentine to our planet’s plants and animals re-purposes some of the footage from the stunning documentary Planet Earth into a more narrative storyline, taking us through the seasons and across the globe to see nature’s eternal themes of […]

Is Anybody There?

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
Movie Release Date:May 1, 2009
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
Movie Release Date: May 1, 2009

A boy whose parents turn their house into a nursing home can be expected to develop an interest in death. Ten year old Edward (“Son of Rambow’s” Bill Milner) is more than interested. He is fascinated. And that is in […]

Fighting

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense fight sequences, some sexuality and brief strong language
Movie Release Date:April 27, 2009
D
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense fight sequences, some sexuality and brief strong language
Movie Release Date: April 27, 2009

Terrence Howard’s performance in “Fighting” is so bizarrely strange and awful that it occurred to me he might be hoping we didn’t realize it was him. Howard plays Harvey, a street hustler who discovers Shawn, a gifted young boxer (Channing […]

Spinning Into Butter

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language
Movie Release Date:March 27, 2009
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language
Movie Release Date: March 27, 2009

The best of intentions and a welcome willingness to engage on the touchiest issues is not enough to keep this movie from feeling more like a seminar than a story. It betrays its origins as a play, still talky and […]

Robert Blecker Wants Me Dead

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Not Rated
Movie Release Date:March 20, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Movie Release Date: March 20, 2009

Robert Blecker is one of the most outspoken — and unexpected — proponents of the death penalty. He does not try to base his argument on the death penalty as deterrent or to prevent the opportunity for further crimes. The […]

I Love You, Man

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive language, including crude and sexual references
Movie Release Date:March 20, 2009
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language, including crude and sexual references
Movie Release Date: March 20, 2009

Paul Rudd is a national treasure. His smaller roles were a highlight of movies like “The 40 Year Old Virgin,” “Knocked Up,” and “Anchorman.” He was charming in “Clueless,” heartbreaking in “The Object of My Affection” and “The Shape of […]

Miss March

posted by Nell Minow
F
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong crude and sexual content, nudity, pervasive language and some drug use
Movie Release Date:March 13, 2009
F
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong crude and sexual content, nudity, pervasive language and some drug use
Movie Release Date: March 13, 2009

A smarmy premise becomes an unspeakably offensive movie in a mess that is not just disgusting but dull. I don’t feel I need a bath after seeing it; I feel I need an exorcism. Remember the song “Centerfold?” That’s pretty […]

Must Read After My Death

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Not Rated
Movie Release Date:February 20, 2009
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Movie Release Date: February 20, 2009

A generation ago the technology first became widely available to allow families to document their lives with home movies and audio recordings. The use of these artifacts has transcended the “can you believe I used to look like that” and […]

Fanboys

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for pervasive crude and sexual material, language and drug content
Movie Release Date:February 20, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for pervasive crude and sexual material, language and drug content
Movie Release Date: February 20, 2009

“Fanboys” has less of a sense of humor about its subjects than they do about themselves. It is so afraid of offending the demographic that it cannot decide if it is making fun of passionate fans of popular culture or […]

Push

posted by Nell Minow

If you add up all the recent movies about ordinary-looking people who walk among us with special hidden powers, you might conclude that there are no normal people left. The accountant next door might be a secret mutant, time traveler, […]

Notorious

posted by Nell Minow

Christopher George Latore Wallace lived fast, died young, and left a very big corpse. He started dealing drugs as a young kid in Brooklyn, went to prison, and was killed at age 24 in a gang-style shooting that is still […]

The Day the Earth Stood Still

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sci-fi disaster images and violence
Movie Release Date:December 12, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sci-fi disaster images and violence
Movie Release Date: December 12, 2008

In the 1951 version of The Day the Earth Stood Still, a spaceship landed in front of the Washington Monument to warn the people of earth that they were on the path to destruction. The problem then was the Cold […]

Delgo

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:PG for sequences of fantasy action violence
Movie Release Date:December 12, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: PG for sequences of fantasy action violence
Movie Release Date: December 12, 2008

The good news is that animation software is so widely available these days that just about anyone can make an animated film. That’s also the bad news. It is now too easy to produce a professional-looking film without the same […]

Nothing Like the Holidays

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic elements including some sexual dialogue, and brief drug references
Movie Release Date:December 12, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic elements including some sexual dialogue, and brief drug references
Movie Release Date: December 12, 2008

Natalie Morales of ABC Family’s The Middleman lists her three rules for a movie with Latino characters: Nobody calls anybody Papi. No dancing to salsa music. No gratuitous Spanish. By that standard, this latest entry in the dysfunctional family holiday […]

Cadillac Records

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive language and some sexuality
Movie Release Date:December 5, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language and some sexuality
Movie Release Date: December 5, 2008

In the words of Etta James, at last. At last, albeit imperfectly, the extraordinary story of the rise and fall of Chess Records has been given the loving attention it deserves. Magnificent performances and soul-shaking music make up for some […]

Role Models

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for crude and sexual content, strong language and nudity.
Movie Release Date:November 7, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for crude and sexual content, strong language and nudity.
Movie Release Date: November 7, 2008

It takes some brains to make a good dumb comedy. Paul Rudd, who has been the best thing in too many films that ranged from dumb, to awful, to wildly uneven, has co-created a film that manages to insult the […]

Morning Light

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some language
Movie Release Date:October 17, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some language
Movie Release Date: October 17, 2008

This sunny documentary about a sailboat race across the Pacific Ocean is a bit of a throwback to the days when a night at the movies included some cartoons, a newsreel, and a travelogue. It has a lot of postcard-pretty […]

Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist

posted by Nell Minow

There is no question that Nick (Michael Cera) and Norah (Kat Dennings) are destined for True Love. For one thing, they have the same taste in music. Nick is still making mixes for the girl who dumped him (Alexis Dziena […]

The Duchess

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief nudity, and thematic material
Movie Release Date:September 26, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief nudity, and thematic material
Movie Release Date: September 26, 2008

Kiera Knightley plays 18th century aristocrat Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire in this muddled but eye-filling saga of an ancestor of Diana, Princess of Wales, who shared her status as a fashion icon, heartbroken wife of a man in love with […]

Nights in Rodanthe

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:September 26, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: September 26, 2008

Of course Richard Gere is going to fall in love with Diane Lane in this movie. How could he resist her and why would he try? Certainly the audience will fall in love with her, too. There is no actress […]

Tyler Perry’s The Family That Preys

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic material, sexual references and brief violence.
Movie Release Date:September 12, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic material, sexual references and brief violence.
Movie Release Date: September 12, 2008

Tyler Perry’s latest film is more traditional and with a more consistent tone than his “Medea” movies, but it has his trademark trio: sincerity, spirituality, and story. And if he passes on that other “s” — subtlety, that’s all right. […]

FLOW: For Love of Water

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:NR
Movie Release Date:September 19, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: NR
Movie Release Date: September 19, 2008

Americans take for granted our most precious and vital resource. We assume that when we turn on the tap, the water that comes out will be perfectly safe and more than plentiful, endless. And then there are those rows and […]

Towelhead

posted by Nell Minow

Alicia Erian’s semi-autobiographical novel about a young girl coming of age has been brought to the screen by writer/director Alan Ball, whose “American Beauty” and “Six Feet Under” explored the darker side of sunny suburban streets. This is the story […]

Traitor

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense violent sequences, thematic material and brief language
Movie Release Date:August 27, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense violent sequences, thematic material and brief language
Movie Release Date: August 27, 2008

A timely story, some welcome complexity, and a compelling performance elevate this story of terrorism above the usual bang-bang. Don Cheadle plays Samir, a person of interest being tracked by the authorities for his possible involvement in terrorist activities. He […]

The Longshots

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some thematic elements, mild language and brief rude humor.
Movie Release Date:August 23, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some thematic elements, mild language and brief rude humor.
Movie Release Date: August 23, 2008

A little bit of grittiness keeps this fact-based story of a girl who plays football from getting too sugary. The talented Keke Palmer of Akeelah and the Bee gives a beautifully understated, witty, and sincere performance as Jasmine, the first […]

The House Bunny

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sex-related humor, partial nudity and brief strong language.
Movie Release Date:August 23, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sex-related humor, partial nudity and brief strong language.
Movie Release Date: August 23, 2008

Being a good sport is part of what makes Anna Faris such a gifted comic actress. She has never had any hesitation about doing whatever it takes to be funny, no matter how ridiculous, embarrassing, or dangerous. Through the “Scary […]

Fly Me to the Moon

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:August 13, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: August 13, 2008

Don’t try to swat that enormous insect buzzing a few inches above your popcorn. It’s a hologram-like image hovering in front of you and it is part of the movie. Yes, you have to wear the clunky glasses, but within […]

Pineapple Express

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive language, drug use, sexual references and violence.
Movie Release Date:August 8, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language, drug use, sexual references and violence.
Movie Release Date: August 8, 2008

Another week, another Apatow movie. Another Apatow movie, another story of lame, pot-smoking slackers up to all kinds of hijinks and discovering the true meaning of friendship. Sigh. Comedy is often grounded in the pleasure of seeing someone get away […]

The Mummy: Tomb Of The Dragon Emperor

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for adventure action and violence
Movie Release Date:August 1, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for adventure action and violence
Movie Release Date: August 1, 2008

Salt the popcorn and settle your gigantic soda in the cup-holder. Brendan Fraser is back and just as important, so are the mummies. Strictly speaking, these guys are not mummies, but they’re close enough. It’s only been nine years since […]

The X-Files: I Want to Believe

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violent and disturbing content and thematic material
Movie Release Date:July 25, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violent and disturbing content and thematic material
Movie Release Date: July 25, 2008

I want to believe, too, but this movie did not make it happen. Six years after the record-breaking television series ended its run, this attempt to carry the franchise forward is unlikely to make any new fans or entirely satisfy […]

Journey to the Center of the Earth

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for intense adventure action and some scary moments
Movie Release Date:July 11, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for intense adventure action and some scary moments
Movie Release Date: July 11, 2008

The most impressive achievement from Brendan Fraser and Josh Hutcherson in this 3D action -adventure is holding our attention as it feels like we are being chased by a drooling dinosaur and squirted with something really ooky. Fraser plays a […]

Get Smart

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some rude humor, action violence and language
Movie Release Date:June 20, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some rude humor, action violence and language
Movie Release Date: June 20, 2008

The big-screen version of the classic 1960’s television show created by Mel Brooks and Buck Henry is more than an update. It shrewdly tweaks the original, making its hero, Maxwell Smart (Steve Carell) smarter and more capable than the bumbling […]

Fugitive Pieces

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:May 16, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: May 16, 2008

In this impressionistic, rose-and honey-toned memory piece, young Jacob hides from the Nazis in 1941 Poland but his parents are killed and his sister is captured. The terrified boy is discovered by a Greek archaeologist, who takes him in and […]

Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong crude and sexual content, graphic nudity, pervasive language and drug use.
Movie Release Date:April 25, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong crude and sexual content, graphic nudity, pervasive language and drug use.
Movie Release Date: April 25, 2008

Like the effects of the marijuana laced with cocaine smoked by a world leader near the end of this movie, the sequel to Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle combines a literally dopey stoner comedy buzz with an electric […]

Young@Heart

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild language and thematic elements.
Movie Release Date:April 21, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild language and thematic elements.
Movie Release Date: April 21, 2008

In School of Rock Jack Black taught a classroom of 10-year-olds that rock and roll music is always about one thing: Sticking it to The Man. A new documentary about a chorus of performers in their 80’s and 90’s shows […]

88 Minutes

posted by Nell Minow
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for disturbing violent content, brief nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:April 19, 2008
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for disturbing violent content, brief nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: April 19, 2008

This non-thrilling thriller is so full of howlers and slippery plot holes that it should slide off the screen, which would be a relief to everyone there. It is at least 88 minutes too long. Al Pacino plays Dr. Jack […]

Juno

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content and language.
Movie Release Date:December 5, 2007
DVD Release Date:April 15, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content and language.
Movie Release Date: December 5, 2007
DVD Release Date: April 15, 2008

It’s time for the q-word again. Every year, it seems, there is some audience-favorite-quirky-little-indy — that category is now a genre of its own, like thriller and romantic comedy. 2006’s Little Miss Sunshine was called “this year’s Napoleon Dynamite. And […]

Smart People

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, brief teen drug and alcohol use, and for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:April 11, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, brief teen drug and alcohol use, and for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: April 11, 2008

A burned-out literature professor named Lawrence Wetherhold (Dennis Quaid) has written an “unpublishable” book called The Price of Postmodernism: Epistemology, Hermeneutics and the Literary Canon. Of course it is unpublishable. Everyone knows that the part of the title that comes […]

Street Kings

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong violence and pervasive language.
Movie Release Date:April 11, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong violence and pervasive language.
Movie Release Date: April 11, 2008

“Street Kings” is a like a Cliff’s Notes version of Training Day not that Training Day was any special challenge to the mental muscle. Corruption is bad, we get it. At least that movie had a sizzling performance and an […]

Leatherheads

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief strong language.
Movie Release Date:April 4, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief strong language.
Movie Release Date: April 4, 2008

Like the 1925 ragtag professional football team it follows, this movie has more high spirits than ability to deliver. George Clooney directs and stars in this affectionate tribute to 1920’s “professional” football and 1930’s movie comedies, but it it captures […]

Beaufort

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Unrated
Movie Release Date:March 28, 2008
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Movie Release Date: March 28, 2008

‘Beaufort,” the first Israeli movie nominated for the best foreign film Oscar in 24 years, is a meditation on the tragic ironies that soldiers face while ending an 18-year occupation of a medieval fortress in Lebanon. Despite their valor, the […]

Never Back Down

posted by Nell Minow

There have been a number of very successful films lately that show one or more high school kids participating in some form of ultimate competition, usually involving dance or sports. The form is as predictable as a limerick: Good-hearted but […]

10,000 B.C.

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action and violence.
Movie Release Date:March 7, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action and violence.
Movie Release Date: March 7, 2008

If you are ten years old, a fan of video games, and have a short attention span and no knowledge of history, you will love this movie. The further you stray from these core qualifications, the less you will love […]

The Bank Job

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content, nudity, violence and language.
Movie Release Date:March 7, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, nudity, violence and language.
Movie Release Date: March 7, 2008

Ah, the pleasures of the heist film. Something for nothing. Sticking it to The Man. Tricky problems solved by clever people both in the planning stages and on the spot. And, just to make it really fun, sometimes, as here, […]

Penelope

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for thematic elements, some innuendo and language.
Movie Release Date:February 29, 2008
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for thematic elements, some innuendo and language.
Movie Release Date: February 29, 2008

This off-beat and uneven fairy tale has something in common with its heroine — an uncertain incongruity. That heroine is Penelope (Christina Ricci), an educated, wealthy young woman with a loving heart and the nose of a pig. More of […]

Charlie Bartlett

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, drug content and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date:February 22, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, drug content and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date: February 22, 2008

Charlie Bartlett (Anton Yelchin) has been kicked out of so many posh prep schools that the only thing left to try is the local public school. At first, he shows up wearing his prep school blazer and carrying an attaché […]

The Hottie & the Nottie

posted by Nell Minow
D
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content.
Movie Release Date:February 8, 2008
D
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content.
Movie Release Date: February 8, 2008

This pea-brained vanity production does not have the energy to remember from one scene to the next what it is about or why it is on screen. It is attention-deficit film-making. Famous-for-being-famous Paris Hilton is not only the star, but […]

Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, language and some drug references.
Movie Release Date:February 8, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, language and some drug references.
Movie Release Date: February 8, 2008

“Family is a 24-7 reality check,” explains one of the parade of nightmare relatives. “This is one hell of a family,” says another. These two statements pretty much summarize the movie. And that’s the good news. Family reunions on screen […]

How She Move

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some drug content, suggestive material and language.
Movie Release Date:January 25, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some drug content, suggestive material and language.
Movie Release Date: January 25, 2008

Raya Green (Rutina Wesley) has to go back home because her Caribbean immigrant parents can no longer afford the tuition at her tony private school. They spent that money on drug rehab for Raya’s sister. But they were unable to […]

U2 3D

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:January 23, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: January 23, 2008

“U2 in 3D” doesn’t just give you the feeling of being at a rock concert. It gives you the feeling of being a rock star. Super-big, super-close, super-clear, and super-charged, it broke the record for the most 3-D cameras used […]

27 Dresses

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language, some innuendo and sexuality.
Movie Release Date:January 18, 2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language, some innuendo and sexuality.
Movie Release Date: January 18, 2007

Jane has a special closet in her apartment filled with 27 dresses so ugly that only two things can be true: (1) they were all bridesmaid’s dresses, and that means (2) all 27 brides assured her that they could be […]

The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything-A Veggie Tales Movie

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Preschool
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:January 11, 2008
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Preschool
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: January 11, 2008

The Veggie Tales have produced a series of popular computer-animated videos for children and their families, with fruit and vegetable-inspired characters in engaging and funny stories with gentle moral overtones. Their new feature film does not mention God, as the […]

First Sunday

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language, some sexual humor, and brief drug references.
Movie Release Date:January 11, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language, some sexual humor, and brief drug references.
Movie Release Date: January 11, 2008

Ice Cube was once a member of the fiercely provocative gangsta rap group N.W.A. (for N****** With Attitude). He is now a prolific Hollywood producer with franchise films from R-rated (the Friday series) to family-friendly (Are We There Yet?). He […]

There Will Be Blood

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:R for some violence
Movie Release Date:January 4, 2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: R for some violence
Movie Release Date: January 4, 2008

It opens with a scorching contrast of light and darkness. Alone at the bottom of a dark pit, Daniel Plainview (Daniel Day-Lewis) stubbornly scratches and claws in the mud. High above, a pitiless sun bleaches a remote desert landscape. Plainview […]

The Water-Horse

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some action/peril, mild language and brief smoking.
Movie Release Date:December 25, 2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some action/peril, mild language and brief smoking.
Movie Release Date: December 25, 2007

In the grand tradition of “he followed me home — can I keep him?” movies, we have seen movies about children who are brought to adventure and understanding through dogs, horses, cats, a whale, a dolphin, dragons, geese, and an […]

Persepolis

posted by Nell Minow

Marjane Satrapi brings her award-winning graphic memoir to the screen in a powerful story of growing up in Iran as the Shah was ousted and hopes for democracy were crushed by the rise of the fundamentalists. Named for the legendary […]

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content, graphic nudity, drug use and language.
Movie Release Date:December 21, 2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, graphic nudity, drug use and language.
Movie Release Date: December 21, 2007

Childhood tragedy and attendant guilt feelings. A big career-defining concert followed by a flashback of everything that went before. Adults amazed by early evidence of extraordinary talent and feel for music. Tragedy and loss to overcome. A first wife who […]

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for graphic bloody violence.
Movie Release Date:December 21, 2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for graphic bloody violence.
Movie Release Date: December 21, 2007

There could be no better match for the gothic saga of the barber who slit men’s throats and the baker who made their bodies into pies than director Tim Burton, the master of the macabre. Here working with Johnny Depp, […]

The Kite Runner

posted by Nell Minow

This faithful adaptation of the worldwide best-seller puts a struggle for personal redemption and atonement in the context of devastating divides, ethnic, cultural, poltical, and moral, set in Afghanistan before, during, and after the Soviet invasion of 1979. Loyalty, betrayal, […]

Atonement

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for disturbing war images, language and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:December 7, 2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for disturbing war images, language and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: December 7, 2007

Little toy jungle animals are lined up on the rug. Typewriter keys bang like gunshots. Briony (Saoirse Ronan) is writing a play called “The Trials of Arabella.” It is 1935 England, a dream of a summer afternoon on a sleepy […]

The Golden Compass

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sequences of fantasy violence.
Movie Release Date:December 5, 2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sequences of fantasy violence.
Movie Release Date: December 5, 2007

Lyra Belacqua (Dakota Blue Richards) is disobedient, obstinate, crafty, and skeptical. In other words, she challenges authority, she is is a creative thinker, and she is in the grand tradition of the heroes of classic adventure stories. And this is […]

The Nanny Diaries

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:PG-13 for language
Movie Release Date:August 24, 2007
DVD Release Date:December 4, 2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for language
Movie Release Date: August 24, 2007
DVD Release Date: December 4, 2007

Oh, we all love to feel superior to rich people, don’t we? It makes us feel so nice and smug. They may have the fancy apartments and couture, but we have a lock on authenticity and unpretentiousness, right? That’s what […]

Arctic Tale

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:July 30, 2007
DVD Release Date:December 4, 2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: July 30, 2007
DVD Release Date: December 4, 2007

The people behind “March of the Penguins” have put together another endearing story of life in the coldest place on earth. This time, it is the story of two newborns, a polar bear called Nanu and a walrus named Seela. […]

Love in the Time of Cholera

posted by Nell Minow
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content/nudity and brief language
Movie Release Date:November 16, 2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content/nudity and brief language
Movie Release Date: November 16, 2007

In the most incongruous mismatch of literature and movie treatment since Demi Moore flounced around in “The Scarlet Letter,” director Mike Newell has taken a lyrical meditation on love, patience, devotion, loss, betrayal, and fever and turned it into a […]

Lions for Lambs

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:MPAA Rating: R for some war violence and language
Movie Release Date:November 9, 2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: MPAA Rating: R for some war violence and language
Movie Release Date: November 9, 2007

It is more op-ed than movie. “Lions for Lambs” is a well-meaning attempt to encapsulate and move forward one segment of our current political debates. But it is mostly speeches, not stories.

O Jerusalem

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some war scenes
Movie Release Date:October 17, 2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some war scenes
Movie Release Date: October 17, 2007

Good intentions often make bad movies.

Ira & Abby

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Everyone can tell that Abby (played by screenwriter Jennifer Westfeldt) is adorable. Her parents dote on her. A jittery subway mugger is disarmed by her – literally. She has not managed to sell a single membership at the health club […]

The Jane Austen Book Club

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, brief strong language and some drug use
Movie Release Date:October 4, 2007
DVD Release Date:2008
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, brief strong language and some drug use
Movie Release Date: October 4, 2007
DVD Release Date: 2008

I’m pretty sure that Jane Austen never thought of including a lesbian jumping out of an airplane in any of her books, and yet somehow that scene fits in just fine in this story of six people who get together […]

The Kingdom

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for intense sequences of graphic brutal violence, and for language.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for intense sequences of graphic brutal violence, and for language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

The highlight of this film is over by the time it begins. A brief credit sequence outlines the relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia in provocative, trenchant terms covering the Saudi nationality of Osama Bin Laden and most 9/11 […]

Resident Evil: Extinction

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong horror violence throughout and some nudity.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong horror violence throughout and some nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Those meanies at the Umbrella Corporation are at it again in the third chapter of this series based on the popular computer game. That pesky virus they allowed to escape has wiped out nearly all life on earth except for […]

Chalk

posted by Nell Minow
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some language.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

A kinder, gentler mockumentary, this black and white film’s greatest strength and weakness is its unwillingness to be too tough on the high school teachers and administrators it portrays. The writers, director, and stars of this movie are all former […]

Into the Wild

posted by Nell Minow
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some nudity.
Movie Release Date:2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Every one of us at times hears the call of the wild, to match the wild of the outdoors to the wild that is inside us, to leave behind all of the petty complications of civilization and test ourselves down […]

Illegal Tender

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violence, language and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violence, language and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: 2007

There’s a chance, but a very slight chance that 20 years from now this could be one of those films whose pulpiness overcomes its dopiness. But I doubt it. Oh, it is fun to see Wanda de Jesus get all […]

The Nanny Diaries

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Oh, we all love to feel superior to rich people, don’t we? It makes us feel so nice and smug. They may have the fancy apartments and couture, but we have a lock on authenticity and unpretentiousness, right? That’s what […]

Underdog

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for rude humor, mild language and action.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for rude humor, mild language and action.
Movie Release Date: 2007

There may be no need to fear now that Underdog is here, but there is no reason to feel very happy, either. This live-action adaptation of the 1960’s animated television show substitutes special effects for satire. The animated series was […]

Hot Rod

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude humor, language, some comic drug-related and violent content.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Even when this movie is at its dumbest, and that is very, very dumb indeed, even when it launches, or, I should say, lurches, into its umpeenth attempt to find humor in having its main character get beat up/crushed/knocked over […]

The Simpsons Movie

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for irreverent humor throughout.
Movie Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for irreverent humor throughout.
Movie Release Date: 2007

“I can’t believe we’re paying to see something we get to see on TV for free. Everyone in this theater is a giant sucker, especialy YOU.” And thus, Homer Simpson lets us know that he’s onto us, as he has […]

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry

posted by jmiller

There are none so straight as those who pretend to be gay. That seems to be the premise of Adam Sandler’s latest slacker comedy. But its mild pleasures are spoiled by its belief that homophobic humor can be somehow sanitized […]

Hairspray

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for language, some suggestive content and momentary teen smoking.
Movie Release Date: 2007

I am not sure which is the more amusingly surprising — the idea that one of the most painful struggles in American history could become the subject of a light musical comedy, or the idea that it comes from one […]

Resurrecting the Champ

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some violence and brief language.
Movie Release Date:2007
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some violence and brief language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Critic-turned-writer/director Rod Lurie produces old-fashioned potboilers, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. His unabashed melodramas can be refreshing in an era when very little of what we see onscreen takes on big issues or provocative positions. But this time, […]

Transformers

posted by jmiller

The surprising transformation here is not from machines into enormous robots but from a modest Saturday morning cartoon based on a line of toys into 2007’s most exhilarating summer movie, able to transform audiences of all ages into 12-year-old fanboys. […]

License to Wed

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual humor and language.

The best thing about “License to Wed” is that John Krasinski and Mandy Moore have enough of that ever-elusive quality — chemistry — that an impending marriage seems possible if not likely. They easily get us on their side. The […]

Live Free or Die Hard

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for intense adventure action and some scary moments.
Movie Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for intense adventure action and some scary moments.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Just as Entertainment Weekly picks the 1988 Die Hard as the greatest action movie of all time, Bruce Willis comma-ti-yi-yippies it up again for NYPD’s John McClane’s fourth explosion-and-wisecrack-fest. Number three is still my favorite, but this latest installment has […]

Ratatouille

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated G
Movie Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated G
Movie Release Date: 2007

Pixar’s latest release is brilliantly animated, and a lot of fun. But it does not have a clear sense of who its audience is, and families with children who are looking for the next Finding Nemo may find themselves puzzled. […]

Sicko

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief strong language.
Movie Release Date:2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief strong language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Presenting symptoms: queasiness, fever, hyperventilation, and mood swings. Diagnosis: You’ve just seen Michael Moore’s latest film, “Sicko.” As the tagline says, “This might hurt a little.” Moore’s record-breaking documentaries have taken on guns (Bowling for Columbine), the war in Iraq […]

Evan Almighty

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild rude humor and some peril.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild rude humor and some peril.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

There isn’t one single surprise in this movie, at least not for anyone who has seen the trailer, except perhaps for its sweetness. Yes, this is another movie about a family that is brought together by an unusual adventure and […]

Fantastic Four 2: Rise of the Silver Surfer

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for sequences of action violence, some mild language and innuendo.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for sequences of action violence, some mild language and innuendo.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

If not exactly meriting the term “fantastic” yet, this second installment is a slight improvement over the “first” film. (“First” is in quotes because there was a legendary 1994 never-released quickie made only to preserve the studio’s rights to the […]

Ocean’s 13

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

The first one was fun for them to make and us to watch. For the second one, clearly the Oceanists were having more fun than the audience. George Clooney has joked that the third “Oceans” film should be called “The […]

Gracie

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2007

When it rains, baseball players go to the locker rooms and put on their street clothes, but soccer players stay on the field, according to father/coach Bryan Bowen (Dermot Mulroney). So we get not one but two high-tension moments as […]

Severance

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong bloody violence, language, drug content and some sexuality/nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Severance is a quirky yet compellingly gory tale of a few great characters begrudgingly forced to spend a weekend together. And then they are hunted down, suffer grizzly deaths, and are, for the most part, never heard from again. Writer/director […]

Mr. Brooks

posted by jmiller

I have to give this film credit for embracing its craziness. This is one movie that proudly raises its freak flag high and lets it wave. But that does not mean it works. Mr. Brooks (Kevin Costner) is an upstanding […]

Surf’s Up

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild language and some rude humor.
Movie Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild language and some rude humor.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Every so often an unpretentious little charmer like “Surf’s Up” darts ahead of the pack of big, over-hyped, over-long, resistance-is-futile summer blockbusters lumbering into multiplexes. This one is as refreshing as an ice cream cone after a hot day. The […]

Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action/adventure violence and some frightening images.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:December 4, 2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action/adventure violence and some frightening images.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: December 4, 2007

Even in a summer blockbuster, sometimes less is more. Especially when it comes to the story. They throw in so many plots, so many battles, so many tonal shifts, so many characters, and ultimately so many Captain Jack Sparrows that […]

Shrek the Third

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some crude humor, suggestive content and swashbuckling action.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Did you ever wonder what happens to the villains while the hero and heroine are living happily ever after? We get to find out in this third chapter in the saga of Shrek. In the previous episode, Prince Charming failed […]

Georgia Rule

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content and some language.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Minow rule: If Hector Elizondo barely makes an appearance in a Garry Marshall film, watch out. Or, I should say, don’t watch. Marshall wisely does his best to include the talented Elizondo in every one of his films. If the […]

Fast Track

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief language and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief language and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Painfully overlong at under 90 minutes, “The Ex” (formerly known as “Fast Track”) is a clunky, lead-footed disaster, the stunning incompetence of its script and direction only exceeded by the shocking array of talented and successful performers who struggle in […]

Jindabyne

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for disturbing images, language and some nudity.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for disturbing images, language and some nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Parents should know that this film deals with very disturbing themes, including the discovery of the dead body of a young woman who may have been raped. There are scenes of nudity and graphic wounds. Characters drink (sometimes to excess), […]

Lucky You

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some language and sexual humor.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some language and sexual humor.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Maybe if it had been made in the 1940’s or 50’s in black and white, maybe if it starred Frank Sinatra and Lee Remick, maybe if we had never seen better films like “The Hustler,” maybe this script might have […]

Spider-Man 3

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action violence.
Movie Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action violence.
Movie Release Date: 2007

It isn’t just Spider-Man who loses his way in the third and last installment. It’s the movie. A superhero movie should have (1) cool special effects, (2) a great villain, (3) thrilling action scenes, and (4) just enough plot to […]

Next

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violent action, and some language.
Movie Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violent action, and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

If Philip K. Dick could have seen into the future, he would never have agreed to have his story “The Golden Man” be adapted into a movie, at least not this movie. Nicolas Cage, who also produced, plays Chris Johnson, […]

Knocked Up

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content, drug use and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, drug use and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Here’s the secret for making a raunchy comedy work — it has to be sweet and even a little bit romantic. What the makers of films like American Pie and The 40-Year-Old Virgin understood is that the “oh, no, they […]

In the Land of Women

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, thematic elements and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, thematic elements and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

If you’ve see the ads with vulnerable cutie Adam Brody from “The O.C.” kissing willowy cutie Kristen Stewart (the kid in Panic Room and growing up very nicely), you probably think it must be a romantic comedy. That’s what they […]

Fracture

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some violent content.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some violent content.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

This is not a who-dun-it. It’s a will-they-be-able-to-prove-it. As in the old Columbo television series, we know from the beginning who pulled the trigger. We see Ted Crawford (Anthony Hopkins) shoot his wife in the head because she was having […]

Disturbia

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 on appeal for sequences of terror and violence, and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 on appeal for sequences of terror and violence, and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

This nicely nifty little thriller takes Hitchcock’s classic Rear Window and updates it to the era of cell phones and webcams. Kale (Shia LeBeouf) is under house arrest for hitting a teacher. For three months, he has to wear an […]

Perfect Stranger

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content, nudity, some disturbing violent images and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, nudity, some disturbing violent images and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Was Ashley Judd at the hairdresser the day this script came in? She’s usually the star of movies like this — the low-level potboiler with the plucky girl in jeopardy, and Morgan Freeman around somewhere to give some sage advice. […]

The Reaping

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violence, disturbing images and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violence, disturbing images and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Ancient scrolls foretell the birth of an evil child begat of an unholy union between an episode of “The X-Files” and Nicolas Cage’s The Wicker Man, from the branch of the family that produced Children of the Corn. Okay, so […]

Grindhouse

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong graphic bloody violence and gore, pervasive language, some sexuality, nudity and drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

NOTE: This movie has extremely graphic, grisly, violent, and disgusting images, situations, and characters. It is not appropriate for anyone under 18 or for many adults. The positive rating is only for its intended audience, fans of this genre. Famously […]

Are We Done Yet?

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some innuendos and brief language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some innuendos and brief language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Is it over yet? Please? Ice Cube’s Are We There Yet? was tough enough to sit through, though unaccountably successful. Thus, we have this doubly unnecessary sequel. It is so creatively bankrupt that it has to teeter not just on […]

The Lookout

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, some violence and sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, some violence and sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

In this tense and twisty thriller, our narrator and central figure is Chris (the stunning Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a one-time high school hockey star and dreamboat who was brain-damaged in a car crash on prom night. Now, he works as the […]

Blades of Glory

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language, a comic violent image and some drug references.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language, a comic violent image and some drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Will Ferrell seems to be working his way through every sport ever covered on ESPN. With figure skating, he has found a target-rich environment for comedy. The collision of sport and showbiz is nowhere more intense than in an Olympic […]

The Hoax

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

What is it about liars that makes them the focus of so many movies? In the past few months alone we’ve had Breech (from the same writer/director who gave us another real-life liar story, Shattered Glass) and Colour Me Kubrick: […]

Meet the Robinsons

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated G
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated G
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

At times, all of us feel like strangers in the world. In Disney’s bight, colorful, CGI animated film (available in 3D in some locations), Lewis (voice of Daniel Hansen) is left on the steps of an orphanage as a baby […]

The Last Mimzy

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some thematic elements, mild peril and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some thematic elements, mild peril and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Two children find toys that make them more intelligent and powerful and send them on an adventure in this fine story for 4th-8th graders and their families. After he plays with the toys, Noah (Chris O’Neil) doesn’t need his glasses […]

Pride

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for thematic material, language including some racial epithets, and violence.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for thematic material, language including some racial epithets, and violence.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Like all sports stories, this is about teamwork, but the team that matters here is Terrence Howard and Bernie Mac who bring such conviction and authenticity to this story of an inner-city Pennsylvania 70’s swim team that you can smell […]

Shooter

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong graphic violence and some language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong graphic violence and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Pulitzer prize-winning film critic Stephen Hunter of the Washington Post has seen a lot of movies, both good and bad, and this film, based on his highly cinematic novel Point of Impact, shows an able, if somewhat derivative, sense of […]

TMNT

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for animated action violence, some scary cartoon images and mild language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for animated action violence, some scary cartoon images and mild language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

They’re teenagers, they’re mutants, they’re ninjas, and they’re turtles. Up from the sewers by way of some handy toxic waste, those Renaissance-named, three-fingered, ninja-fighting, pizza-eating turtle siblings are back in their first all-CGI adventure. They say funny-tough things like, “I’m […]

Hot Fuzz

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violent content including some graphic images, and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violent content including some graphic images, and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Those Shaun of the Dead guys are at it again. Having put a comedic stake through the heart of the zombie movie, they are now going after brainless cop films. Simon Pegg, the clueless Shaun in the last film, here […]

Away From Her

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some strong language.
Movie Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some strong language.
Movie Release Date: 2007

Parents should know that this is a very sad movie with themes that may be disturbing to some audience members. Characters use brief strong language. Families who see this movie should talk about some of their own stories about losing […]

I Think I Love My Wife

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Chris Rock has often said he admires the work of Woody Allen, and in Rock’s latest film, “I Think I Love My Wife,” the comedian tries to channel a very “Allen” vibe. Like Allen, he writes, directs, and stars. And […]

Premonition

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some violent content, disturbing images, thematic material and brief language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some violent content, disturbing images, thematic material and brief language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

With little style and no substance, this low-wattage forgettable thriller plays like a rejected episode of “The Twilight Zone.” Linda (Sandra Bullock) wakes up every day in a different reality (and a different sleeping outfit — she has quite the […]

300

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for graphic battle sequences throughout, some sexuality and nudity.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for graphic battle sequences throughout, some sexuality and nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

“Everyone will kneel to you — if you will kneel to me.” That is the offer made by a gold-dusted, multi-pierced Xerxes of Persia to King Lionidas (Gerard Butler) of Sparta in this visually sumptuous version of the battle of […]

Zodiac

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some strong killings, language, drug material and brief sexual images.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some strong killings, language, drug material and brief sexual images.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

We still don’t know for sure who was — or is — the California serial killer known as the Zodiac, the name he used in a series of letters he sent to San Francisco newspapers in the late 1960’s and […]

Wild Hogs

posted by jmiller
D
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, and some violence.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
D
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, and some violence.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

It was almost 40 years ago that Easy Rider made a motorcycle road trip the ultimate baby boomer emblem of freedom and adventure. Now John Travolta, William H. Macy, Martin Lawrence and Tim Allen play the uneasiest of riders in […]

Reno 911!: Miami

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexual content, nudity, crude humor, language and drug use.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexual content, nudity, crude humor, language and drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Silly cops have been a staple of comedy since Shakespeare created the character of Dogberry in Much Ado About Nothing. They’ve been a staple of movie comedy from the Keystone Kops of the silent era through the Police Academy and […]

The Number 23

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violence, disturbing images, sexuality and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violence, disturbing images, sexuality and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

There are 23 things wrong with this movie. Or maybe there are 24. Or 165. To be honest, I lost count. Despite this film’s best efforts, it never persuaded me that there was anything special about the number 23.It began […]

Ghost Rider

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for horror violence and disturbing images.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for horror violence and disturbing images.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

“Ghost Rider” needs a new ghost writer. Well, it needs something. You might not think that a movie based on a comic book about a flaming skeleton in a leather outfit who rides a (literally) hot motorcycle and has a […]

Hannibal Rising

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong grisly violent content and some language/sexual references.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong grisly violent content and some language/sexual references.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

My first Hannibal Lecter was Brian Cox in Manhunter . As dazzling as Anthony Hopkins was, that’s still my favorite Hannibal portrayal. Like Hopkins, Cox showed us Lecter’s mesmerizing stillness and unnervingly penetrating mind. In both Manhunter and The Silence […]

Music & Lyrics

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Comedy that is actually funny plus romance that is actually sweet equals a sunny little valentine to brighten the winter doldrums. And — I can’t help saying it — Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore go together like music and lyrics. […]

The Astronaut Farmer

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for thematic material, peril and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for thematic material, peril and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Once upon a time there was a farmer who wanted to build a rocket ship and orbit the earth. And there were some evil ogres who wanted to stop him. That’s the best way to describe this slight fairy tale […]

Breach

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violence, sexual content and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violence, sexual content and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Robert Hanssen was the head of the Soviet department in the FBI. And he was working for the enemy. Over a period of 22 years, he sold vital secrets to the Soviet and Russian governments for $1.5 million, resulting in […]

Black Snake Moan

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong sexual content, language, some violence and drug use.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong sexual content, language, some violence and drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Things are not going well for Lazarus (Samuel L. Jackson). He has been living a life right out of a blues song. His wife left him. For his brother. And now, he has found an almost-naked young woman, badly beaten, […]

Bridge to Terabithia

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for thematic elements including bullying, some peril and mild language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for thematic elements including bullying, some peril and mild language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Thirty years ago, a young mother named Katherine Paterson wrote a book to console her son David after his close friend was killed in an accident. That book went on to win the Newberry, children’s publishing’s highest honor, and to […]

The Namesake

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexuality/nudity, a scene of drug use, some disturbing images and brief language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexuality/nudity, a scene of drug use, some disturbing images and brief language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Ashima (Indian superstar Tabu) pauses before entering the living room to meet her prospective bridegroom and his family. Their shoes have been left outside the door, according to the customs of her home in India. Ashima sees that inside the […]

The Messengers

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, disturbing violence and terror.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, disturbing violence and terror.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

The trailers for “The Messengers” don’t do it justice — there’s a lot more potential in this movie than appears in the Grudge– and The Omen-like snippets shown as teasers. The idea isn’t bad. It’s in living up to this […]

The Situation

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violence, language and a scene of sexuality.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violence, language and a scene of sexuality.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Parents should know that this film contains disturbing wartime violence involving military and insurgent groups. Characters are injured and killed. There are some non-explicit sexual situations. Characters drink, smoke, and use some strong language. A strength of the movie is […]

Blood and Chocolate

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violence/terror, some sexuality and substance abuse.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violence/terror, some sexuality and substance abuse.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

There was enthusiastic applause in the theater when the name of author Annette Curtis Klause appeared in the opening credits. The book, about a teenage girl in Maryland whose werewolf issues serve as a metaphor for the sometimes-disturbing forces in […]

Smokin’ Aces

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong bloody violence, pervasive language, some nudity and drug use.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong bloody violence, pervasive language, some nudity and drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

This is a flashy, nasty, hyper-violent story about a lot of people who are very, very interested in a snitch, magician and five time entertainer-of-the-year Buddy “Aces” Israel (Jeremy Piven). He’s about to turn state’s evidence against his long-time cronies […]

The Hitcher

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong bloody violence, terror and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong bloody violence, terror and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

John Ryder returns in this remake of the 1986 horror film, and this time he has his eyes (and knives, and guns, and fleet of constantly-changing automobiles-turned-weapons) on not the young man driving but the young woman in the passenger’s […]

Arthur and the Invisibles

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for fantasy action and brief suggestive material.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for fantasy action and brief suggestive material.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Director Luc Besson is known for his striking visuals and his mash-ups of sentimental, even corny moments with intense, graphic violence. At his best, in films like The Professional and The Fifth Element, these juxtapositions work well. But here, in […]

Code Name: Cleaner

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, crude humor and some violence.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, crude humor and some violence.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

With a script that couldn’t find 22 minutes of jokes to fill a sitcom on the USA Network, even Cedric the Entertainer can’t make this attempt at comedy anything but inert. It want to be a spy spoof. It’s a […]

Happily Never After

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild action and rude humor.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild action and rude humor.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

As an Empress of Evil announces that she is in charge and from now on it will be “happily NEVER after,” the film appears to jump off the sprockets of the projector and a narrator interrupts with an important announcement. […]

Freedom Writers

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violent content, some thematic material and language.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violent content, some thematic material and language.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Here is the formula for movies about idealistic young teachers who go into bad neighborhoods: 1. Idealistic teacher goes into bad neighborhood and is aghast at poor conditions and cynicism of the school administration. 2. Students treat teacher with contempt […]

Notes on a Scandal

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some aberrant sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some aberrant sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

Long-time teacher Barbara Covett (Judi Dench) doesn’t even pretend to care anymore. The other teachers come back from summer break with thoughtful reports — or apparently thoughtful reports — on their departments and their plans, but she turns in three […]

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for aberrant behavior involving nudity, violence, sexuality, and disturbing images.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for aberrant behavior involving nudity, violence, sexuality, and disturbing images.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

It’s an engaging idea — to make a movie about the one sense least able to be evoked by film, the sense of smell. The great triumph of the cinema is the way it unites sound, words, and images to […]

Children of Men

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong violence, language, some drug use and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date:2007
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong violence, language, some drug use and brief nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2007
DVD Release Date: 2007

“A baby is God’s opinion life should go on,” Carl Sandburg said. So, in a world where babies have stopped being born and the death of the youngest person on earth is an international tragedy, there seems to be no […]

Night at the Museum

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild action, language and brief rude humor.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild action, language and brief rude humor.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Larry (Ben Stiller) needs a job fast. He has always dreamed of making it big, but none of his schemes have worked and as his ex-wife points out, their son Nick needs some stability. After an employment counselor (Stiller’s real-life […]

Dreamgirls

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language, some sexuality and drug content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language, some sexuality and drug content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

If my movie reviews had headlines, this one’s would be: “A Star is Born.” More like a Supernova. Jennifer Hudson explodes onto screen in this incendiary production of the Broadway musical inspired by Motown and the Supremes. She is mesmerizing. […]

The Good Shepherd

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some violence, sexuality and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some violence, sexuality and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

You can see what drew director Robert DeNiro and co-producer Francis Ford Coppola to this film about the beginnings of the CIA. It resonates with many of the same themes as their great triumph Godfather II. In both stories, men […]

Rocky Balboa

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for boxing violence and some language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for boxing violence and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

“You throw a big shadow,” someone tells Sylvester Stallone in his sixth appearance as heavyweight Rocky Balboa, the character he created for the Oscar-winning Rocky). And those five previous films throw a big shadow, indeed, making this slight coda seem […]

Miss Potter

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG brief mild language
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG brief mild language
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

As delicate as the title character’s watercolors, this gentle story about the author and illustrator of The Tale of Peter Rabbit very winning. Renee Zellwegger plays the quiet daughter of conventional parents who don’t quite know how to respond to […]

Eragon

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for fantasy violence, intense battle sequences and some frightening images.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for fantasy violence, intense battle sequences and some frightening images.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

The fact that the CGI dragon gives the best performance in this film is not going to impede the enjoyment of its intended audience, which is 9-12 year olds. It may, however, make it a bit of a long haul […]

Unaccompanied Minors

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild rude humor and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild rude humor and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

In “Unaccompanied Minors,” a group of young travelers are stranded in Chicago’s fictional Hoover Airport on Christmas Eve. Lead to a room full of other children but decidedly empty of Christmas spirit, five break away from the chaotic “rec room,” […]

Blood Diamond

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong violence and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong violence and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

December brings us the thinking person’s thrillers — all of the explosions and shooting and close calls of a summer movie, but with a more serious purpose and a more distinguished pedigree. Like Syriana and Traffic, this is the story […]

We Are Marshall

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for emotional thematic material, a crash scene, and mild language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for emotional thematic material, a crash scene, and mild language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

At least in movies, sports are almost always about redemption, community, and triumph. Sports — like movies — provide a controlled world with boundaries within which we can work through issues that seem insurmountably complex outside the chalk lines on […]

Apocalypto

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sequences of graphic violence and disturbing images
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sequences of graphic violence and disturbing images
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

There are at least three movies here and two of them are great. There is the classic adventure saga of the hero who is trying to get home and save his family. Mel Gibson, as director, has created brilliant action […]

The Good German

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, violence and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, violence and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Director Steven Soderbergh has created a loving tribute to the films of the 1940’s that is more accomplished than effective. It is such a meticulous re-creation of the techniques and technology of the era that it seems jarring to see […]

Charlotte’s Web

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated G
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated G
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

E.B. White’s book, Charlotte’s Web, is a genuine classic for readers of any age, a beautifully written literary novel about loyalty and loss, friendship and the importance of a perfectly chosen word. The book began with a little girl named […]

Turistas

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong graphic violence and disturbing content, sexuality, nudity, drug use and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

The growing trend in horror is to be as disgusting as possible — the story need not be involved, as long as it includes some form of stainless-steel torture and preferably five to six young backpackers/tourists/campers/other people away from home. […]

The Nativity Story

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some violent content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some violent content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Jean Kerr once wrote of school Christmas pageant with a moving depiction of the nativity that consisted of two young children crossing a bare stage. They stopped briefly. Joseph said, “Mary, ’tis a cold, cold night.” “‘Tis,” she replied. And […]

Deck the Halls

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some crude and suggestive humor, and for language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some crude and suggestive humor, and for language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Another year, another cheesy, hypocritical movie about how the true meaning of Christmas gets lost in the madness of Christmas. Except that this movie is, in itself, Exhibit A in the Christmas Madness category. And, to boot, it has unforgiveably […]

Deja Vu

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and terror, disturbing images and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and terror, disturbing images and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

A heart-pounding thriller with a time-travel twist, “Deja Vu” will not leave you thinking you’ve seen it all before. Denzel Washington plays Doug Carlin, an ATF agent called in to investigate a bombing. Someone, perhaps a terrorist, has blown up […]

Casino Royale

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violent action, a scene of torture, sexual content and nudity.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violent action, a scene of torture, sexual content and nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

They got a lot right with this new rebooted Bond, but — let me get this straight — when Bond and the Bad Guy have their big confrontation, it’s…a poker game? First things first. Daniel Craig is a great Bond, […]

Happy Feet

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild peril and rude humor.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild peril and rude humor.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

It’s official. The cutest thing on the planet is penguins singing “Boogie Wonderland.” Especially if one of them is tap-dancing. This movie is a straight shot of sunshine. I defy anyone to watch it without smiling. Just as important, I […]

Tenacious D in: The Pick of Destiny

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive language, sexual content and drug use.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language, sexual content and drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

If you’re going to make an unapologetic slob/druggy/rock and roll comedy it has to be snark-free, without a hint of irony. Self-deprecation is welcome, but winking at the audience spoils the effect. And this movie winks at its winking, a […]

Opal Dream

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild thematic elements, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild thematic elements, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Antoine de Saint-Exupery wrote in The Little Prince, “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” That is the theme of this gentle story about a little girl whose […]

Harsh Times

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong violence, language and drug use.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong violence, language and drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

If David Ayer the director paid David Ayer the screenwriter for this script, he should ask himself for some of his money back. The screenplay is awfully close to Ayer’s own Training Day, the film that won Denzel Washington his […]

A Good Year

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Plonk is a Britishism for cheap, low-quality wine — not undrinkable, by any means, just nothing special. As much could be said for this film, lightly based on the helium-weight plonk of a best-seller by Peter Mayle. Some movies begin […]

Babel

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violence, some graphic nudity, sexual content, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violence, some graphic nudity, sexual content, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

In the Bible, the story of Babel is a cautionary tale of hubris. The whole world had a common language until God, seeing that the people were building a huge tower together, “confused their speech.” They could no longer understand […]

Stranger Than Fiction

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some disturbing images, sexuality, brief language and nudity.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some disturbing images, sexuality, brief language and nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Who among us has not leaned into the bathroom mirror as we brushed our teeth, thinking about what a narrator might be saying about us if we were in a story? “Our hero prepared for battle as though he was […]

For Your Consideration

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual references and brief language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual references and brief language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

This is the time of year when ads, CDs, and DVDs marked “for your consideration” are sent out to members of the movie industry and to critics, in the hopes that those behind and in front of the camera will […]

The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated G
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated G
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Tim Allen and Martin Short are funny guys. How do we know this? Because when this movie is finally over, there are some outtakes during the credit sequence that remind us. Up to that point, it’s easy to forget. Twelve […]

Borat

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive strong crude and sexual content including graphic nudity, and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive strong crude and sexual content including graphic nudity, and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

First and foremost, let me make it clear that this movie has extremely outrageous and offensive material and is not for the faint of heart or the easily shocked, and inappropriate for sensitive or impressionable viewers. But it’s also very […]

Flushed Away

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for crude humor and some language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for crude humor and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

Aardman has applied the sweetly demented sensibility of the “Wallace and Gromit” claymation films to their first CGI film and it is an irresistible treasure. It has their trademark intricacy of design, thrilling, hair’s-breadth-timing of action sequences, mastery of physical […]

Running With Scissors

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong language and elements of sexuality, violence and substance abuse.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong language and elements of sexuality, violence and substance abuse.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

The appeal for actors of movies about hideously dysfunctional people is obvious. They’re fun to play, and always good for awards consideration. Which script would you go for, the umpty-umpth “meet cute” romantic comedy or the one where you play […]

Catch a Fire

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic material involving torture and abuse, violence and brief language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic material involving torture and abuse, violence and brief language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

A sizzling performance by Derek Luke ignites this story about Patrick Chamusso, a South African oil refinery worker who became caught up in the fight against apartheid. Chamusso who did his best to stay out of trouble and care for […]

The Prestige

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violence and disturbing images.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violence and disturbing images.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

As if we should believe him, Hugh Jackman’s character proclaims in “The Prestige” that magicians have a “circle of trust.” “The Prestige” takes that circle of trust and twists it into a Russian roulette, with Jackman betting on black and […]

Marie Antoinette

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, partial nudity and innuendo.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, partial nudity and innuendo.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

With this third film, we can begin to see the themes emerging in the work of writer/director Sofia Coppola. Again, she has given us the story of a sensitive, vulnerable young woman trying to find a place and some meaning […]

Flicka

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some mild language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some mild language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

“No one’s riding that loco thing!” Well, of course as soon as we hear that line we know someone’s going to have to ride it. And in this very fine family film, the rider will be Katy (Alison Lohman), just […]

The Grudge 2

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, disturbing images/terror/violence, and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, disturbing images/terror/violence, and some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

There are two types of people who awake with an uneasy feeling on Friday the 13th: the superstitious, and those who just can’t stomach the release of another horror sequel, remake, or (in this case), sequel to a remake. But […]

Man of the Year

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language including some crude sexual references, drug related material, and brief violence.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language including some crude sexual references, drug related material, and brief violence.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

So, what if Jon Stewart or Stephen Colbert decided to run for President? First of all, didn’t we already see that movie, when it was called Head of State and starred Chris Rock? (Okay, he didn’t play a comedian, but […]

Stormbreaker

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for sequences of action violence and some peril.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2007
C
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for sequences of action violence and some peril.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2007

I never thought I’d miss Cody Banks. But the dull and lifeless Alex Rider brought back surprisingly fond thoughts of the better-than mediocre Agent Cody Banks and the terrific first two Spy Kids. Even the lousy third one was better […]

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