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genre

  • Action
  • Animation
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  • Classic
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  • Drama
  • Epic
  • Fantasy
  • Horror
  • Musical
  • Romance
  • Science Fiction
  • Sports
  • Spy
  • Thriller
  • War
  • Western

quality

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

who's watching

  • My entire family
  • Just the grown-ups
  • Little kids
  • Big kids

age range

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




The Devil Wears Prada

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It is just too bad Meryl Streep is so good at drama and suffering and accents and stuff like that because that means we don’t get enough of a chance to see how brilliantly funny she is. Her under-appreciated work […]

Click

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for language, crude and sex-related humor, and some drug references.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language, crude and sex-related humor, and some drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Like Tom Cruise, Adam Sandler has based his career on playing shallow, callow boy-men who learn painful for him/humorous for us lessons about the importance of growing up. Those stories have enduring appeal on two levels. First, we get the […]

Waist Deep

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

A standard gangsta bang-bang movie with a script like a rap song benefits from charismatic performers and smooth writing and direction by Vondie Curtis Hall, who plays it like an urban western — a strong, quiet loner takes on a […]

Peaceful Warrior

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sensuality, sex references and accident scenes.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sensuality, sex references and accident scenes.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some off-color elements.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some off-color elements.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

This is lowest common denominator movie-making. Why not, it’s based on a lowest-common denominator comic strip. Garfield’s lighter-than-air comic strip is utterly generic because its motivating force is not art or comedy but commerce; the less distinctive the character or […]

Cars

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

Look closely at the little flying bugs buzzing and bumping in the hot light of the desert. They are, of course, Bugs: VW Bugs with wings. In the world of this story, all of the characters are cars and all […]

The Omen

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for disturbing violent content, graphic images and some language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for disturbing violent content, graphic images and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Director John Moore knows one thing — how to compose some compelling images with swirling white (flakes of snow, scraps of paper) and something creepy and scarlet to catch your eye. But those swirling flakes and glimpses of red have […]

A Prairie Home Companion

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for risque humor.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for risque humor.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Garrison Keillor’s voice is a national treasure. It is so warm, so magnetic, even hypnotic that it lulls you into a whole different dimension, an idealized past located somewhere between innocent nostalgia and ironic self-awareness, as though Norman Rockwell painted […]

The Break-Up

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content, some nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content, some nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Someone should file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission about false advertising for this film. The trailer and the ads indicate that it is a romantic comedy. But it is, in fact, neither romantic nor a comedy; it’s more […]

X-Men: The Last Stand

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action violence, some sexual content and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action violence, some sexual content and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

A concerned father bangs on the door of the bathroom, insisting that his son open the door. Inside, his son sobs as he tries frantically to get rid of the evidence that his body is changing in a way he […]

The Da Vinci Code

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for disturbing images, violence, some nudity, thematic material, brief drug references and sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

A character in this movie’s version of the Catholic organization Opus Dei explains that their mission is to follow doctrine very strictly. That was director Ron Howard’s secular mission as well with this adaptation of the world-wide best-seller. He and […]

Over the Hedge

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

Computer technology has always had the advantage in animation when it comes to texture and three-dimensionality, and it is superb for physical properties like “shiny” and “bouncy,” but it has lagged behind hand-drawn when it came to expressions. “Over the […]

Poseidon

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense prolonged sequences of disaster and peril.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense prolonged sequences of disaster and peril.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

This remake is so stripped down it doesn’t even have time for two of the three words of the original: this isn’t The Poseidon Adventure — it’s just “Poseidon.” If they remake it, it will be called “Pos.” Top-notch action […]

Mission Impossible III

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

At this point, the impossible mission may be finding some way to make this story work once more. That Lalo Schifrin score still jumps and in this version there is a propulsive shot of percussive adrenalin. The idea of super-spies […]

Goal!

posted by jmiller

A soccer-mad friend sat beside me in the theater, leaning over from time to time to explain what was going on in the game on the screen or point out an in-joke about the appearance of a real-life figure from […]

Hoot

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

Kids take on developers to protect endangered owls in this mildly pleasant story based on the award-winning book by Carl Hiaasen. Parents will admire some of the messages — care for the environment, self-reliance, loyalty, and communication skills. But they […]

Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Mrs. Palfrey (Joan Plowright) did not think of herself as someone who would live in the shabby gentility of the Claremont, a residential hotel in London. We never learn the details of what brought her there or keeps her there, […]

RV

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for crude humor, innuendo and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for crude humor, innuendo and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Road movies are pretty easy. Whether the people on the journey have just met and are getting to know each other or who don’t like each other and have to overcome animosity, all we ask is two things. First, we […]

The Sentinel

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some intense action violence and a scene of sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some intense action violence and a scene of sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

What this movie gets right is the dry, cynical, slightly gallows-ish humor of people who spend their lives on constant alert, knowing that 999 out of a thousand of the “suspicious” activities they check out will be nothing. They are […]

The Wild

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

“The Wild” is more like “The Mild.” But it is pleasant enough; its the timing that’s rotten. Like last year’s suprisingly successful Madagascar, this is an animated film about zoo animals who have to learn to fend for themselves in […]

Phat Girlz

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language, including some crude sexual references.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language, including some crude sexual references.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It occured to me as I watched this movie that this was the third time in the last few months that I was watching a large black woman bringing shock and awe to to a bunch of slender, clueless white […]

The Benchwarmers

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and suggestive humor, and for language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and suggestive humor, and for language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Booger jokes. Potty jokes. Hit on the head jokes. Hit on the crotch jokes. And underdog characters so annoying that they have you rooting for the bullies. These guys should have stayed on the bench. On behalf of everyone who […]

The Devil and Daniel Johnston

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, drug content, and language including a sexual reference.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, drug content, and language including a sexual reference.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It’s not just that an interview with a rock star while he is in the dentist’s chair having his teeth drilled is far from the weirdest thing in this movie. It’s more that the whole story is so weird that […]

Lucky Number Slevin

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

Slevin (Josh Harnett) is not having a good week. He lost his job and his girlfriend. He was mugged and his wallet and suitcase were stolen. He decided to visit a friend, who seems to have disappeared. But the door […]

ATL

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

The star of this movie is first-time director Chris Robinson, who took an appealing but conventional story of five friends on the brink of adulthood and made it come alive with a vibrant, pulsing, slightly cynical but ultimately hopeful tone […]

Basic Instinct 2

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

Someone should tell Sharon Stone that you can’t step in the same river twice. Or you can’t go home again. Or that for every Godfather II there are a hundred Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloos. Anything to stop another big, boring […]

Ice Age: The Meltdown

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

Once again, as in the first Ice Age, wooly mammoth Manny (voice of Ray Romano), sloth Sid (John Leguizamo), and saber tooth tiger Diego (Denis Leary) set off on a journey. This time, they have to lead their friends out […]

Take the Lead

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for thematic material, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for thematic material, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It never fails. No matter how many times rap songs win the Oscar, no matter how many years have passed since Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were at the top of the box office as they danced the Carioca and […]

Inside Man

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some violent images.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some violent images.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Spike Lee’s brilliant direction and a clever and surprising script from first-timer Russell Gewirtz provide an ideal setting for four of the most watchable actors in the business in a heist film that transcends and tweaks its genre. It has […]

She’s the Man

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual material
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual material
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It worked for Shakespeare, so why not for Amanda Bynes? Shakespeare had female characters pretending to be male because they were all played by men anyway. While his prodigious heart and brain certainly understood the rich and delightful narrative and […]

V for Vendetta

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

“Remember, remember, the fifth of November, gunpowder treason and plot. I see no reason why the gunpowder treason should ever be forgot.” Who says good-looking, brawny action flicks cannot also have brains to match? “V for Vendetta,” based on Alan […]

Find Me Guilty

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

Director Sidney Lumet revisits the themes of two of his most memorable films in this movie, but with less success. Like Dog Day Afternoon, it is a true story with colorful characters and both comic and tragic overtones. Like 12 […]

The Hills Have Eyes

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

If these hills only had eyes, it would be one thing but parents should know that they also have mutants wielding pickaxes which results in a disturbingly graphic movie not suitable for sensitive audiences of any age or species. Even […]

The Shaggy Dog

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

An uninspired all-the-best-parts-are-in-the-trailer remake, this is a showcase for two things: Tim Allen’s mugging and some computer wizard-style special effects. The limited entertainment value of both items and a solid supporting cast are not quite enough to make up for […]

Ultraviolet

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sequences of violent action throughout, partial nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sequences of violent action throughout, partial nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

This movie hopes that it can distract you from its failure of imagination with the following: Throbbing techno club music-style soundtrack Sleek, towering futuristic structures The toned body of star Milla Jovovich, magnificently displayed in a variety of skin-tight, midriff-baring […]

Block Party

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

The regal Erykah Badu takes the stage, her slender form topped with an enormous puff of hair that hangs down over her face. But the stage is outdoors on a gusty, rainy day, and all of a sudden it is […]

Unknown White Male

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

Confounded doctors admit that they’ve only seen it in movies and textbooks. But in this documentary a mystery, perhaps the ultimate mystery occurs. A healthy and successful young man wakes up on a train to Coney Island to discover – […]

16 Blocks

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for violence, intense sequences of action, and some strong language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for violence, intense sequences of action, and some strong language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

When a cop at a crime scene needs someone to stay with the bodies until the detectives arrive, he asks “who don’t we need?” That would be tired, slow, Jack Mosley (Bruce Willis). As soon as the other cops leave, […]

Doogal

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

This tiresome animated quest story starts out uninspired but quickly becomes irritating. Half an hour into its 80 minute running time, the child behind me asked hopefully, “Is that the end?” If only. Has anyone behind this movie ever met […]

Madea’s Family Reunion

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, domestic violence, sex and drug references.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, domestic violence, sex and drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

As the Borg say on “Star Trek,” “Resistance is futile.” Don’t even try to get in the way of Madea, that pistol-packing, Bible-thumping, larger than life powerhouse and force for good creation of Tyler Perry, who also plays the part. […]

Failure to Launch

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

Trip (Matthew McConaughey) is a 35-year-old boat broker who happily resides in an assisted living facility where he is served fresh pancakes and bacon with warmed syrup and all of his clothes are cleaned, neatly folded, and placed on his […]

Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story

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

When in the depths of winter the dregs of the cinematic year limp into theaters, some audiences long for the more cerebral fare of spring or fall. “Haven’t we seen this plot before?” becomes a common refrain and a movie […]

Date Movie

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for continuous crude and sexual humor, including language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for continuous crude and sexual humor, including language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

I counted references to 23 movies in this 80-minute film, not including Girls Gone Wild and “The Bachelor,” or about one every three and a half minutes. Throw in a couple of songs and a dozen or so celebrity shout-outs […]

Freedomland

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some violent content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some violent content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

This movie’s inability to live up to its potential is nearly as epic as its misleading title. In other hands, “Freedomland” might have played a jazz-like riff of personal loss and moving vignettes against the 4/4 beat of racial injustice […]

Final Destination 3

posted by jmiller
F
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong horror violence/gore, language and some nudity.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
F
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong horror violence/gore, language and some nudity.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It’s like deja vu, says the main character, only of something I haven’t done yet. Wow, get out of my head, Wendy! We are barely minutes into “Final Destination 3” and already we, the audience, are sharing her feeling. We […]

Curious George

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Preschool
MPAA Rating:Rated G
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Preschool
MPAA Rating: Rated G
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

This gentle little film about the monkey whose curiosity gets him into trouble and the man who befriends him will make 4-8-year olds very happy and give their parents a chance for a nice nap. Generations of children have loved […]

Aquamarine

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for mild language and sensuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for mild language and sensuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

The best thing about this fairy tale is that its happily-ever-after ending is satisfyingly real world. It’s the most enchanting treat for girls since The Princess Diaries. It’s less of a fairy tale than a fish tale, at least half […]

Firewall

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some intense sequences of violence, and for some language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some intense sequences of violence, and for some language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

What can you do if you want to rob a bank and hotshot Harrison Ford has designed a foolproof security system? Well, firewalls may be unbreakable, but people are not. So, you tell him that if he doesn’t break into […]

When a Stranger Calls

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense terror, violence and some language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense terror, violence and some language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

“He is calling from within the house.” What a line! Since the original version of When a Stranger Calls came out in 1979, that sentence — packed with impending terror –has resonated with babysitters and played on their fears as […]

Thank You for Smoking

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and some sexual content.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Michael Kinsley famously said that the crime in campaign finance is not what’s illegal — it’s what’s legal. That also applies to campaign finance’s even sleazier cousin, lobbying. Lobbyists are paid by groups, mostly business groups, to prevent legislators from […]

Eight Below

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

The dogs rescue the humans, but will the humans rescue the dogs? Can they? A scientist (Bruce Greenwood) arrives at a National Science Foundation base in Antarctica, in search of a rare meteor. Vehicles are too heavy to take over […]

Imagine Me & You

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some language and sexual material.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some language and sexual material.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Love at first sight can be thrilling, but it can very very inconvenient when it happens to a bride who is walking down the aisle at the time. Especially if the loved-at-first-sight object of affection is another woman. Rachel (Piper […]

Big Momma’s House 2

posted by jmiller
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual humor and a humorous drug reference.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual humor and a humorous drug reference.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

The poster for this movie shows Martin Lawrence in fat-lady drag tugging at a wedgie. This is as funny as it gets. A completely unnecessary sequel to a mildly amusing 2000 movie with Martin Lawrence as an FBI agent who […]

Roving Mars

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

Imagine standing in Los Angeles, trying to shoot a basketball all the way to New York, where it must hit the basket without touching the hoop. That’s the magnitude of the challenge faced by NASA scientists and engineers in trying […]

Annapolis

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

Sincere performances and some star charisma can’t save this movie from its derivative screenplay, a retread of every “callow youth learns what it means to be a man” service drama. This movie samples An Officer and a Gentleman and Top […]

Something New

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

They are so afraid we won’t get the point that this movie has our heroine literally letting down her hair, literally putting some color into her beige world, and — in case we still don’t get it — literally having […]

Nanny McPhee

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

There are seven children in the Brown family, and they are all very clever and exceedingly naughty. The 16th nanny has just quit because she thought she saw the six older children eating the baby. The nanny agency refuses to […]

Underworld: Evolution

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for pervasive strong violence and gore, some sexuality/nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive strong violence and gore, some sexuality/nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

“Is that the same guy that was just sucking the blood out of the dead horse?” That was my question to the critic sitting next to me in the middle of the movie. I liked the first Underworld. I thought […]

The New World

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some intense battle sequences.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some intense battle sequences.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

It is beautiful to look at. Director Terrence Malick knows how to create images of stunning beauty and power. Those images are especially compelling in this story of Captain John Smith and the because they show us what it was […]

End of the Spear

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Can you forgive the unforgiveable? Fifty years ago, five American missionaries were killed by members of the most violent culture ever studied by anthropologists, the Waodani tribe in Ecuador. The homicide rate was 60 percent. The widows and children and […]

Glory Road

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for racial issues including violence and epithets, and momentary language.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for racial issues including violence and epithets, and momentary language.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

A man who coaches high school girls’ basketball gets a job at a small Texas school and not only takes them to the nationals, where they defeat the long-time champions in a stunning upset, he changes the course of college […]

Tristan + Isolde

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense battle sequences and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense battle sequences and some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

Tristan and Isolde have suffered enough. This movie feels like overkill. Oh, their legend will survive. But this classic comics-style perfume commercial of a re-telling will not. The ampersand is a giveaway. “And” isn’t good enough? An ampersand is, what, […]

Match Point

posted by jmiller
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date:2006
DVD Release Date:2006
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some sexuality.
Movie Release Date: 2006
DVD Release Date: 2006

In Stardust Memories, Woody Allen’s character refers to his mother’s cooking as putting food through the “deflavorizing machine.” His latest movie feels as though he has taken his complex and powerful Crimes and Misdemeanors abd put it through a deflavorizing […]

The Ringer

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language and some drug references.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language and some drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

The single most interesting aspect of this movie about a man who pretends to be disabled so that he can compete in the Special Olympics is that the movie was made in cooperation with and with the endorsement of the […]

Rumor Has It

posted by jmiller
F+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, crude humor and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
F+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, crude humor and a drug reference.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

In the savage satire The Player, actor/screenwriter Buck Henry makes a hilarious pitch for a sequel to The Graduate, something of a savage satire itself, though cloaked in the garb of a romantic fantasy of rebellion and authenticity. The thing […]

Fun With Dick and Jane

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief language, some sexual humor and occasional humorous drug references.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief language, some sexual humor and occasional humorous drug references.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

The first “Fun with Dick and Jane” was the popular reader that millions of first graders used to sound out words like “Oh” and “Run!” Dick and Jane were perfect suburban children in an idealized world of smiling parents, sunny […]

The Producers

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for sexual humor and references.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual humor and references.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

The 1968 version of The Producers was a brilliantly funny commercial flop about an outrageously offensive and atrociously appealing play that became a hit. The screenplay won an Oscar for director/writer Mel Brooks. It was fall-out-of-your-chair-gasping hilarious and a cherished […]

Brokeback Mountain

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for sexuality, nudity, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for sexuality, nudity, language and some violence.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

Director Ang Lee is a master of repressed love whether between young Taiwanese men in The Wedding Banquet, Jane Austen’s class-conscious Brits in Sense & Sensibility, duty-bound warriors in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, or even monsters and scientists in The […]

King Kong

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for frightening adventure violence and some disturbing images.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for frightening adventure violence and some disturbing images.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

This is not just one of the most thrilling action movies ever made – it is more like five or six of the most thrilling action movies ever made. It is not quite twice as long as the usual movie, […]

Cheaper by the Dozen 2

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for some crude humor and mild language.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for some crude humor and mild language.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

As synthetically generic as a “Happy Holidays” card from your realtor, this by-the-numbers pratfall-fest is, at least, a teensy bit better than the 2004 original. I’ll explain why in a moment. But first, I want to say something about montages. […]

Last Holiday

posted by jmiller
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sexual reference.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some sexual reference.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

Every night, Georgia Bird (Queen Latifah) cooks a spectacular meal, arranges everything perfectly, takes a picture of it for her “possibilities” scrapbook and then feeds it to the boy who lives next door while she microwaves a frozen diet dinner […]

Munich

posted by jmiller
A
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong graphic violence, some sexual content, nudity and language.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
A
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong graphic violence, some sexual content, nudity and language.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meier said, “I can forgive them for killing my children. I cannot forgive them for forcing my children to kill theirs.” At the 1972 Olympic games in Munich, there was very little security because the Germans […]

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

posted by jmiller
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for battle sequences and frightening moments.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for battle sequences and frightening moments.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

The perennial children’s classic by C. S. Lewis has been lovingly, thrillingly, enchantingly, brilliantly brought to screen in this flawless adaptation of the first of the “Narnia” series. (Note for purists — yes, it is chronologically the second in the […]

First Descent

posted by jmiller
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for brief strong language and a momentary drug reference.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for brief strong language and a momentary drug reference.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

When the helicopter takes you to the snowy peaks at the end of the paved road, where “backcountry” describes a style and a philosophy as oppose to a location, you know you are about to see something beautiful. As if […]

Syriana

posted by jmiller
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for violence and language.
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated R for violence and language.
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

Most movies tell us everything and then they tell it to us again, just to make sure. Some movies, like this one, tell us too little, making us work at it, making us lean forward in our seats, fill in […]

Casanova

posted by jmiller
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for some sexual content
Movie Release Date:2005
DVD Release Date:2006
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for some sexual content
Movie Release Date: 2005
DVD Release Date: 2006

Mistake number one may be the title. There may be times in history when it is possible to have an appealing lead character whose primary interest in life is women, but this doesn’t seem to be it. For centuries, people […]

Rent

posted by jmiller

When thinking about a Tony- and Pulitzer-prize winning musical based on an opera, an almost-entirely-sung story about homeless artists, some of them drug addicts, some infected with the AIDS virus, the director of Mrs. Doubtfire is not the first thought […]

Ice Harvest

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

This is a rancid lump of coal in the toe of the Christmas stocking of the holiday movie season. Perhaps inspired by the unexpected success of last year’s anti-feel-good Bad Santa, this has that movie’s star, Billy Bob Thornton, as […]

Memoirs of a Geisha

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Movies can show us visions of other worlds, exotic vistas, customs, fashions, rules. And they can show us visions of ourselves, with our longings, our fears, our dreams, the and the way love can include them all. “Memoirs of a […]

Just Friends

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

The worst thing about this movie is not how dumb it is, or how much talent it wastes. The worst thing is not how crude it is or how ugly the humor (more accurately, intended humor) is, and how cynically […]

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

No recap. No amusingly horrifying opening appetizer at the Dursley’s house. No intriguing Diagon Alley detours. Someone shouts at Harry to hold on and he is whooshed into his next adventure as we are whooshed along with him. It turns […]

Derailed

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

This movie sets out for intense, psychological thriller but ends up in an unrealistic dead-end thanks to misguided casting, implausible character development and a whole lot of bad behavior on the part of nearly everyone onscreen. “Derailed” indeed. Stuck on […]

Walk the Line

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

At first it just seems like a pulse. Then we realize it is a sound. Then we realize it is a very loud sound, muffled because it is on the other side of some very thick walls. Johnny Cash (Joaquin […]

Yours, Mine & Ours

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

This one is straight off the sit-com conveyer belt, all pratfalls and spit-takes. What little gloss it gets from star power is buried under forced humor about a pet pig (The pig swallows a cell phone! The pig eats the […]

Get Rich or Die Tryin’

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

It begins with a burst of energy and charisma as Marcus (rapper Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson) and his friends break into a store so they can rob it. They don’t break in so much as explode in. Director Jim Sheridan […]

Zathura

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

There’s a lot to look at in this movie, but unpleasant characters keep getting in the way. And I don’t mean the bad guys. In this follow-on to Jumanji, like this movie, based on a book by Chris Van Allsburg, […]

Chicken Little

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

You know that nightmare of appearing at school in your underwear? That happens to poor Chicken Little (voice of Zach Braff of TV’s “Scrubs”), a tiny little chick with big glasses perched uncertainly on his beak, but he has the […]

Jarhead

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

In Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, Estragon and Vladimir wait for someone (God?) who never arrives, evoking the absurdity and powerlessness of the modern condition. In “Jarhead,” based on the memoirs of Persian Gulf veteran Anthony Swofford, Marine recruits wait […]

Bee Season

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

A little girl who thought she was the ordinary member of the family discovers a talent for spelling, in this thoughtful movie based on the best-seller by Myla Goldberg. But this is not a fictionalized version of the superb documentary […]

Pride and Prejudice

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the best romantic novel in the English language must perpetually be in need of a remake. And it is equally true that movie adaptations of Pride and Prejudice face an odious dilemma. On […]

The Weather Man

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

In this movie, David Spritz (Nicolas Cage) pays tribute to his father, Robert (an immaculate performance by Michael Caine) by quoting a Bob Seger song. So I’ll begin my review with a quote from a Bob Dylan song: “You don’t […]

Shopgirl

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

“Shopgirl” is a luminous, if melancholy, modern-day fairy tale about a lost princess named Mirabelle (Claire Danes) whose path to true love is complicated when she meets an evil enchanter. Okay, he’s not evil; he’s Steve Martin, who co-stars as […]

Doom

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

The movie is called “Doom” and it’s based on a video game. So no one is expecting insights into the human condition or subtle performances. We’re here to see stuff get blown up, baby. And that’s what we get — […]

North Country

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

“North Country” was “inspired by a true story,” but instead of sticking to the undeniably moving facts of the sexual harassment suit filed by female mineworkers, this movie veers off into distracting and soapy subplots. It doesn’t trust its story, […]

The Legend of Zorro

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Great stunts, glamorous stars, and our affection for the characters make this sequel watchable, even with a disappointing script. The original was pure popcorn pleasure, with Anthony Hopkins as the original Zorro, the dashing masked swashbuckler who appeared wherever justice […]

Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

There is one thoroughbred on the screen in this film and her name is Dakota Fanning. Ever since her breakthrough performance at the age of six in I am Sam, when she more than held her own with Sean Penn […]

Prime

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Writer-director Ben Younger, who perflectly nailed the high-testosterone world of pump-and-dump stock scams in Boiler Room, is a bit more uneven with a switch over to the estrogen side of things with “Prime.” It is the story of an unusual […]

The Squid and the Whale

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

A hyper-verbal, deeply wounded man who is almost as clever (but not nearly as brilliant) as he thinks he is has an ego that has been triply hit. His unfaithful wife wants a divorce, his writing career, once called promising, […]

Elizabethtown

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

I’ve always suspected that a failed Cameron Crowe movie would be more entertaining than a successful movie by most Hollywood screenwriters, and this shows I was right. Okay, Vanilla Sky was not exactly entertaining, but it wasn’t exactly a CC […]

Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Julianne Moore’s radiant performance as Evelyn Ryan does for this movie what the real-life Ryan’s “contest-ing” did for her family in the 1950’s — it holds it together with such mesmerizing grace that it makes the rough patches seem endearing. […]

Two for the Money

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

There’s only one possible reason that Brandon Lang (Matthew McConaughey), a one-time quarterback with a busted knee turned 900-number sportsline win-predictor sticks around after he finds out what is really going on in the big-money sports betting advice, and it’s […]

In Her Shoes

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Siblings divide up the world to prove who they are, and the closer they are to each other, the more they depend on each other, the harder they would to stake their claim to being different from each other. In […]

Domino

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

“Based on a true story.” “Sort of.” Domino Harvey was the daughter of British movie star Laurence Harvey (The Manchurian Candidate<img src="http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=nellminowthemovi&l=ur2&o=1" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;"). She grew up in luxurious surroundings, worked as a model, […]

Oliver Twist

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Waiting

posted by rkumar
F
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
F
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

I’ve said it before, but apparently some out there were not listening, so here I go again. Disgusting is not the same as funny. Now, please, pay attention this time, because I do not want to have to sit through […]

Serenity

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

Creator of Buffy the the Vampire Slayer Joss Whedon has populated another world with tough, smart-talking characters fighting the darkest evil. And once again the heart of the force for good is a not entirely unconflicted or uncomplicated adolescent girl. […]

A History of Violence

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Flies buzz and bump against a window as a woman looks out helplessly at a scene of terrible violence on her once-placid front lawn, in her once-peaceful community. A little girl wakes up from a dream of monsters and is […]

MirrorMask

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

A curiously distant story is surrounded by enchanting visuals and special effects in this Alice in Wonderland-style tale of a young girl who has to solve a puzzle in a magical land in order to get back home and help […]

Good Night, And Good Luck.

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

I love this movie so much I wanted to go up and hug the screen when it was over. And then I wanted to sit down with everyone I know and watch it over again. It’s a triple threat, and […]

Just Like Heaven

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Many romantic comedies have a Sleeping Beauty theme, but few as literally as this by-the-book but enjoyable trifle. Elizabeth (Reese Witherspoon) is a dedicated doctor who has no life outside the hospital. One night her car is hit by a […]

Proof

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

People often speak of “opening up” a play when it is made into a movie. In one sense the Tony- and Pulitzer-prize winning Broadway production of “Proof” has been opened up. Instead of entirely taking place at one house near […]

The Thing About My Folks

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

You never know.” What does that mean? Of course you never know, but why would someone adopt that as an all-purpose rejoinder? Writer/producer/actor Paul Reiser has a good feel for the way families talk to each other, especially the talk […]

Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

There are so many reasons to love writer-director Nick Park’s dim, gentle, cheese-loving inventor Wallace and his patient, practical, and loyal dog, Gromit. First, they are brilliant at every kind of funny, from sophisticated wit to sly parody to outrageous […]

The Man

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

As generic as its title, this drearily predictable and tushie-obsessed buddy cop movie has just one distinction — it wastes more talent in less time than we get to see very often outside of straight-to-video releases. We’ve seen everything here […]

Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

It’s the details that matter in this movie more than the characters, the story, or even the music, all blander than in writer/director Tim Burton’s first claymation movie, Nightmare Before Christmas. Still, there is a goulishly enchanting love triangle and […]

A Sound of Thunder

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

The most remarkable special effect in this movie based on Ray Bradbury’s classic science fiction short story is Ben Kingsley’s hair. The usually-bald actor has been given a thick thatch so white it almost glows in the dark. He even […]

The Greatest Game Ever Played

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

When you give a movie the title “The Greatest Game Ever Played,” expectations will be pretty high. When it turns out that the game in question is a golf match that occured almost a century ago between two people most […]

Transporter 2

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Silly but stylish, this sequel to The Transporter is, like the original, all about the chases and fight scenes. It’s about the usual for a sequel — 2/3 of the quality of the original, but like its title character, it […]

Lord of War

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

It’s a classic American success story. An immigrant with a dream and a vision works hard and becomes wealthy and successful. He marries the girl he fell in love with at age 10 and they and their son live in […]

Underclassman

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

Apparently, when Nick Cannon was growing up, he dreamed of being Eddie Murphy in Beverly Hills Cop. It seems he also wanted to be Jon Cryer in Hiding Out. So, when he got a chance to produce a feature film […]

The Constant Gardener

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Director Fernando Meirelles (City of God) turns his Brazilian –cinematic—jujitsu on an emotionally gnarled book by England’s spy king, John LeCarré, with an equatorial glare that dares the audience to keep up with characters bathed in every shade of black, […]

The Exorcism of Emily Rose

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

This muddled mess wants to be three things at once and fails at all of them. It wants to be a horror movie, a courtroom drama, and and inspiring spiritual statement, but each element detracts from the others and the […]

Everything Is Illuminated

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

If a movie has two guys who could not be more different going on a difficult journey and one of them has a funny accent, a quirky dog, and a grumpy grandfather, you might expect slapstick and confrontations and misunderstandings […]

The Cave

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

This movie unfolds as though the scenes were assembled in random order. At least I think that’s what it looks like; it is hard to say because it was so dark and murky looking. It appears to be some sort […]

Undiscovered

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

It starts promisingly. Just as he is leaving New York for Los Angeles, aspiring musician Luke (Steven Strait) sees a beautiful girl on the subway. As her train is about to pull away, she tells him he has dropped his […]

The Brothers Grimm

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

Too scary for kids and too thin for anyone else, Terry Gilliam’s latest movie, like his heroes’ tricks, has a lot of visual flair, but no substance. Gilliam’s version of the story about the folklorist Grimm brothers, Jacob (Heath Ledger) […]

Say Anything

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1989
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1989

Lloyd Dobler (John Cusack) is an engagingly aimless high school graduate who likes junk food and kickboxing. Courageously, he sets his heart on Diane Court (Ione Skye), the most beautiful and brilliant girl in school, described as a brain “trapped […]

Roll Bounce

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

In Undercover Brother, director Malcolm Lee’s shrewd but affectionate appreciation of the 1970’s was played for satire. In “Roll Bounce,” he brings that same evocative skill to a coming of age story that is sweet, funny, touching, and completely genuine. […]

Red Eye

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Master of horror Wes Craven moves into the thriller genre, showing us that scary is scary, with or without grotesque killers (A Nightmare on Elm Street) or grotesque killings (the Scream trilogy). Craven’s sure sense of pace and ability to […]

Supercross

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

I’ve got to give this movie some credit for its lack of pretense and the modesty of its goals. The title says it all. This movie is called “Supercross” and that’s exactly what it is. It’s pretty much just supercross […]

Valiant

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Like its title character, this little animated film has heart and charm. What it will have trouble finding is an audience to appreciate it. This is a computer-animated film with a G rating that assumes its viewers will understand references […]

The Skeleton Key

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Buoyed by Gena Rowlands’ magisterial presence, this mediocre little bit of hoodoo-voodoo mystery casts enough of a spell to propel it through the trancelike lethargy of the first 80 minutes until it double, double, toils and troubles to reach its […]

The 40-Year-Old Virgin

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Andy (Steve Carell) collects “action figures” from movies, comic books, and television series, maintaining them with curatorial scrupulocity in their meticulously preserved original packaging. He is pretty meticulously preserved himself. Like his collection, he is an action figure who gets […]

Broken Flowers

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

George Orwell said that by age 50 every man has the face he deserves. Now in Hollywood, by age 50 it’s more likely that movie stars pretty much have the faces they can buy (are you listening, Cher? Meg Ryan? […]

The Dukes of Hazzard

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

If you think that seeing a nutty fat guy in saggy white underpants blowing things up is funny, then this movie might be for you. Otherwise, don’t bother. The single biggest challenge for a “lunchbox movie” (a movie that gets […]

Stealth

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

The middle of the summer is always the time for a big, dumb, loud explosion movie, with a lot of thumping bass to show how manly it all is, and “Stealth” has arrived right on schedule. Its name is a […]

The Island

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Director Michael Bay knows how to blow things up. Between Armageddon, Pearl Harbor and, now, “The Island,” he has boldly used his camera for visual extravaganzas that are designed to amaze even the jaded summer audience. What he has seldom […]

Sky High

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

It’s the classic anxiety dream — embarrassing yourself in front of the whole class on the first day of school. Now imagine that instead of being called upon to answer some question about the summer reading, you’ve been brought onstage […]

Devil’s Rejects

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

The Movie Mom wants to make it clear that this film is not for children or for most adults. It is unrated for its graphic depiction of violence, including sexual violence and torture, strong language, substance abuse, and anything else […]

Must Love Dogs

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Those out there who are still hoping for Lloyd Dobler to stand outside their window holding up a boombox playing “In Your Eyes” may be glad to hear that a movie that tries to be Say Anything, Part 2: After […]

Fantastic Four

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

There are four of them, and they are fantastic. Idealistic scientist Reed Richards (Ioan Gruffudd) has a reach that exceeds his grasp. Beautiful and brilliant Sue Storm (Jessica Alba) loves him but feels that he doesn’t really see her. Her […]

Bad News Bears

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Here is a list of reasons to remake The Bad News Bears: 1. 2. 3. And here is a list of reasons not to: 1. It’s been done. And re-done. And re-re-done. The original 1976 movie sparked a perennial series […]

Wedding Crashers

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

A bawdy summer comedy for adults and mature teens, this movie features rapid-fire dialogue and sincere affection between best-friend leads and strong chemistry between the actors who portray them, thereby elevating what could have been a brainless ode to never […]

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Like a bowl of peanut butter-pretzel, chocolate ice-cream with a marshmallow swirl, this “Charlie” is a delicious confection that is gluttony for the senses and has novel twists placed in a familiar favorite. True to form, director Tim Burton has […]

Dark Water

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

No matter how many times they film it, the “something creepy is going on in my house” story has a lot of potential. We’ve all heard creaks and wondered, on dark and stormy nights, if anyone — or anything — […]

George A. Romero’s Land of the Dead

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

A groaning buffet table of cannibalistic carnage and cheesy dialogue, “Land of the Dead” unevenly masks its stale plot elements with campy winks and a dash of humor. The extreme carnivore’s ultimate popcorn genre, the zombie flick, is back in […]

Herbie: Fully Loaded

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Lindsay Lohan tries for three for three with another remake of a Disney classic, following The Parent Trap and Freaky Friday with an updated version of The Love Bug, but this one doesn’t quite make it across the finish line. […]

Rebound

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

It’s called “Rebound,” but it’s more like “Retread.” This is right off the conveyer belt of underdog-team-of-kids-matched-with hot-headed-and-self-centered-coaches-used-to-sliding-by movies. That means it is yet another in the endless series of movies about scrappy little sports teams made up of losers […]

The Perfect Man

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

The word “perfect” should not be used anywhere near this disappointing and downright icky would-be romantic comedy, in which a teenage girl creates a fake online boyfriend to cheer up her lonely mother. Jeane (Heather Locklear) is a gifted baker […]

Batman Begins

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

Every so often, it’s time to re-boot Batman. Bob Kane created Batman in 1939. What made him different was that in an era of superheroes, he had no super-powers. All he had was a bat costume and a burning mission […]

High Tension

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

This French gore-fest is two-thirds ripe and one-third rot, resulting in an initially promising but ultimately disappointing horror movie that is not for sensitive or discerning audiences of any age. Dripping with tension both violent and sexual, “High Tension” (“Haute […]

Rize

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

In West Side Story, Anita says that the boys dance like they’re trying to get rid of something. There is no trick photography in this film. It begins by advising the audience that the movie has not been sped up […]

Bewitched

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

This update of the 1960’s television series that is still running on TV Land is as cute as the magical twitch of Samantha Stephens’ nose. Director and co-writer (with her sister Delia) Nora Ephron have given us more than the […]

The Deal

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

There is an amateur quality to this film that might be endearing if it was not so self-righteous and almost deliberately ignorant. Though written by a former investment banker, it has been dumbed down to Hollywood’s idea about Wall Street […]

The Honeymooners

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

The classic television show The Honeymooners has been not so much updated as aoftened and sweetened. The original, half a century later, is fresher and more contemporary than this stale marshmallow of a remake. The appeal of the original was […]

Howl’s Moving Castle

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones seems especially suitable for adaptation by Hayao Miyazaki because it has many of his favorite themes. The central character is a young girl who shows determination and loyalty when she is brought into […]

March of the Penguins

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

In the coldest place on earth, the only place where it is safe to care for newborns is 70 miles from the only place to find food. And so, the Antarctic’s hardiest and most determined inhabitants, the emperor penguins, must […]

Rock School

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

As adorable as Jack Black’s fictional portrayal was, there is something inherently disturbing about the idea of a real life School of Rock for 9-17-year-olds. Of course there is the problem of the music itself, loud, profane, and rude, promoting […]

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

This is a story about one summer in the life of four friends, told with sincerity, heart, and a little bit of magic — the very same qualities that made the original book and its sequels a “you have to […]

Mr. & Mrs. Smith

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Can This Marriage Be Saved? (With apologies to the Ladies’ Home Journal) John’s turn: We got married before we really knew each other. Now I wonder whether we’ll ever know each other. She always seems so controlled and controlling. I […]

The Longest Yard

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

After a series of interchangeable slacker movies with scripts that felt like two lines scribbled on a pizza box cover and a couple of sensitive performances in movies by A-list directors, Adam Sandler seems to be growing up at last. […]

Madagascar

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Some charming performances and saucy humor cannot save this movie from its surprising insensitivity. Its core question is what happens to best friends in captivity, who, once returned to the wild, realize they are predator and prey. The makers of […]

Lords of Dogtown

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

In the late 1970’s, a group of kids in Venice, California who loved to surf invented a new kind of skateboarding and a new kind of cool. Three ingredients came together. The first was technology. Skateboards were a fad that […]

Murderball

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

You know those thousands of heartwarming, triumph of the human spirit, disease-of-the-week movies? With heroes and heroines who suffer through every possible medical catastrophe and become better people and learn the meaning of life? I know they are supposed to […]

Ladies in Lavender

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

The title of the movie suggests faded characters fussing over antimacassars and sipping tea. But the beauty of this film is that it shows us that the feelings of these women are anything but simple and their scope is as […]

Unleashed

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

A series of ugly, brutal fight sequences surround a sweet story of healing in an uneasy combination — or perhaps in view of the content of this movie, collision. But it is what the movie does not show that, for […]

Kicking & Screaming

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Will Ferrell is to this movie (and pretty much any movie he is in) what the Italian ringers are to the soccer team his character coaches in the film. As long as he keeps getting the ball, he scores. Ferrell’s […]

Mindhunters

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Someday, I’d like to see a thriller in which there are no “fooled you!” fakeouts, no one that the audience thinks is dead turns out to be still alive, the characters are allowed to have actual personalities instead of just […]

Cinderella Man

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

The people behind A Beautiful Mind have re-teamed on another real-life story, but with less successfui results. It has the ingredients — evocative portrayal of an earlier time, an inspiring story of a deeply loving and supportive married couple stuggling […]

Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

I admit it. My heart still starts to beat faster when I see those words: “A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away….” And it beat faster still when I read the opening crawl and found not a […]

Monster-in-Law

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Jane Fonda is having such a blast being back on screen in a pull-out-all-the-stops performance that it seems a little stingy not to enjoy it more. But this latest variation on Meet the Parents and Cinderella is always a little […]

Kingdom of Heaven

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

This huge, clanging epic about the 12th century Crusades is too beautiful to be bad, too clumsy to be good, too long to be comfortable, too uneven to be powerful, and has a leading character too lightweight to be compelling. […]

House of Wax

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Just when it seemed that Hollywood was running out of paint-by-numbers horror movie remakes, along oozes the half-baked “House of Wax” to leave its greasy smear on movie non-history. If the project was an independent label’s small budget scream-fest, with […]

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

Arthur Dent (Martin Freeman of “The Office”) is in his bathrobe one Thursday morning, bumping his head, burning his toast, and engaging in a completely ineffectual protest of the new highway by-pass that has a flank of bulldozers ready to […]

Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

Arthur Dent (Martin Freeman of “The Office”) is in his bathrobe one Thursday morning, bumping his head, burning his toast, and engaging in a completely ineffectual protest of the new highway by-pass that has a flank of bulldozers ready to […]

Mad Hot Ballroom

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

“Can I have the gentlemen tuck in their shirts, please?” This is a question politely but firmly addressed to a group of underprivleged 5th graders in New York. And not in the 1950’s. Now. The 10 year old “gentlemen” do […]

XXX: State of the Union

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Can we ever see Ice Cube as a gangsta again after Barbershop and Are We There Yet? Do we want to? Ice Cube is a fine actor who can do a lot with a strong script (Boyz n The Hood […]

The Game of Their Lives

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

When a movie is called “The Game of Their Lives,” you know they’re not going for subtlety.

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

“Ask why.” That was the question at the end of the television commercials for Enron, five years in a row Fortune magazine’s “most innovative company” for the way it revolutionized the market for natural gas. But, as we all now […]

King’s Ransom

posted by rkumar
F
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
F
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

At times, during this movie, I looked up at the ceiling, not so much casting my eyes heavenward for assistance as trying to find something more interesting to look at than what was on the screen. The ceiling won, hands […]

The Interpreter

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

“The Interpreter” is a watchable, if not always absorbing thriller, thanks to sheer star power and top directing talent. Nicole Kidman is Silvia, an American raised in Africa, who works as an interpreter at the United Nations. One night she […]

A Lot Like Love

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Somebody decided to remake When Harry Met Sally but they left out the charm, the wit, the detail, the sincerity, the endearing characters, the romance, the scene in the deli, and the great soundtrack. Unsurprisingly, it does not work. This […]

Fever Pitch

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

The only thing surprising about this completely conventional big studio date movie is that it comes from the joyfully outrageous Farrelly brothers (There’s Something About Mary, Shallow Hal) and the literary but widely-read Nick Hornby. The Hollywood studio de-flavorizing machine […]

Sullivan’s Travels

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:1941
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 1941

“Sully” Sullivan (Joel McCrea) is a successful director of silly comedies, including Ants in Your Pants and Hey, Hey in the Hayloft. The studio wants him to make more, but he wants to make a movie with a serious message […]

The Ring Two

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

First off, this is the kind of sequel where you really should see the Ring before seeing the Ring Two. In addition to the many visual and character references, you also will understand that the second in the series, while […]

Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

Somewhere inside this very mainstream Hollywood confection is a surprisingly subversive little bit of deconstruction. It takes a classic Cinderella theme — the makeover that catches the attention of Prince Charming — and turns it upside-down. This is a movie […]

The Ring 2

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

First off, this is the kind of sequel where you really should see the Ring before seeing the Ring Two. In addition to the many visual and character references, you also will understand that the second in the series, while […]

House of D

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

Engaging characters and evocative period detail cannot overcome the uh-oh factors that ultimately overwhelm this coming-of-age story set in the 1970’s and written and directed by actor David Duchovney. Movies that start with voice-overs as adults recall the year when […]

Beauty Shop

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

This film is less a movie than a brand extension. Speaking of which, it is as synthetic as cut-rate hair extensions and as obvious as its intrusive product placements. Beauty Shop is more deal than delight. It’s 3/4 remake, a […]

Guess Who

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Karl Marx once wrote that “history repeats itself, the first time as tragedy, the second as farce.” That must be how the earnest drama Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner got remade as this silly comedy. Nearly 40 years ago, the […]

D.E.B.S.

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Four top spies are staking out a meeting between a ruthless Russian assassin and the world’s most notorious international criminal mastermind. One of the spies redirects the sound equipment to eavesdrop on the conversation of a fellow spy who is […]

The Upside of Anger

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Parents should know that this movie has central characters who abuse alcohol as a way of coping with — actually as a way of not coping with — their problems. They also smoke, use frequent bad language, and behave in […]

Millions

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

A bag of money literally falls from the sky and lands on Damian (Alex Etel). It’s just the most recent of a series of events that call into question everything he thought he know. He has recently lost his mother, […]

Robots

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2005
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2005

Just like its endearing hero, Rodney Copperbottom (voice of Ewan McGregor), this movie is assembled from hand-me-down parts but it has so much heart that it is transformed into something irresistibly fresh and downright adorable. One of the hand-me-down parts […]

Gunner Palace

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

A bunch of American kids in or just out of their teens are now living and working in Baghdad’s Azimiya Palace, built by Saddam Hussein for his son Uday. They are the Army’s 2/3 Field Artillery, known as the Gunners, […]

Melinda and Melinda

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Woody Allen’s latest movie has a great premise. But while it is surer and more intriguing than the arid Anything Else and Hollywood Ending, it still fails to give us characters who connect in authentic or interesting ways to each […]

Be Cool

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

“I won’t say any more than I have to, if that.” That’s John Travolta as Chili Palmer in Get Shorty, and it’s a great character, a great line, and a great movie. Chili says it again in this watered-down sequel. […]

The Pacifier

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2005
D
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2005

This crass, crude, and overly familiar formula comedy has Vin Deisel as Shane Wolf, an all-business Navy Seal who has to play babysitter for five children in the suburbs. He’s all about securing perimeters and drop-and-give-me-twenty. They are undisciplined and […]

Hostage

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2005
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2005

Three combustible forces come together in one fortress of a mansion in this bloodbath of a hostage drama. First is Jeff Talley (Bruce Willis), a former big-time hostage negotiator who was shattered by a tragic failure and gave it up […]

Man of the House

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2005
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2005

“One riot, one Ranger.” That’s the Texas Rangers pledge. But apparently, it now needs to be revised: “Five cheerleaders, three Rangers.” Tommy Lee Jones, in gloriously full crag mode, plays a Texas Ranger named Sharp assigned to protect cheerleaders who […]

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posted 8:00:34am Apr. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: Song from the Forest
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekirhw2MMwQ I was delighted to see that there is a documentary about Louis Sarno, whose work I have admired since I saw the wonderful film Oka! directed by Lavinia ...

posted 8:00:43am Apr. 24, 2015 | read full post »

The Age of Adaline
Be careful what you wish for.  You think it would be great to stay 29 forever?  Adaline (Blake Lively) finds out that it is not great to become unstuck from time, to watch everyone you love grow old and die, to hurt those you care about ...

posted 5:59:10pm Apr. 23, 2015 | read full post »

The Water Diviner
Before it detours into not one, not two, but at least three preposterous Hollywood twists, "The Water Diviner" is an absorbing drama about ...

posted 5:58:54pm Apr. 23, 2015 | read full post »

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The latest Criticwire survey asks for our first encounters with "Star Wars." I had a lot of fun writing about mine: A long, long time ...

posted 9:22:38am Apr. 23, 2015 | read full post »

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