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genre

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quality

  • A+, A, A-
  • B+, B, B-
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  • F+, F, F-

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age range

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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 […]

The Jacket

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 Gulf War veteran whose injuries have left him with an uncertain memory walks along a highway then stops to help a mother and daughter whose car has stalled. He gets the car started, but the mother is high and […]

Sahara

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

“Sahara,” based on one of Clive Cussler’s series of novels about dashing adventurer Dirk Pitt feels more like a 1940’s serial than a book written in 1991 or a movie made in 2005. The characters are too thin, the violence […]

Constantine

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

Take a 1930’s movie detective, a guy who shoots straight and talks tough. You know, the kind of guy who may have a soft spot for a dame in a jam but that doesn’t necessarily mean he believes what she […]

Because of Winn-Dixie

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

This story of a girl, a dog, and the lessons they teach a small southern town is appealing but a bit heavy-handed, starting right at the beginning. It leads off with the sugary cliche trifecta: voice-over narration telling us how […]

Diary of a Mad Black Woman

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 separate movies collide in this uneven but heartfelt drama of a woman done wrong who has to learn to rely on herself for the first time. The first movie is a soapy, syrupy, over-the-top “women suffering in fabulous clothes” […]

Hitch

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

“Is Hitch a noun or a verb?” Sarah (Eva Mendes) asks Alex “Hitch” Hitchens (Will Smith). “It depends,” he answers. It’s actually a little of both. Hitch is a “date doctor,” a sort of Straight Eye for the Straight Guy […]

Pooh’s Heffalump Movie

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

Small children will enjoy this gentle story of making friends. Their families will be grateful for the fact that there is a suitable movie for younger kids and they might enjoy the pretty water-color backgrounds and a couple of funny […]

Boogeyman

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

With a storyline thinner than the protagonist’s stereotyped rich girlfriend and enough lead-heavy dialogue to sink a movie of twice the caliber, “Boogeyman” is a bloated 86 minutes of overzealous spookiness, to be admired primarily by aspiring sound-effects specialists. Eight-year […]

The Wedding Date

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

All the romantic comedy gloss in the world can’t save a script as stale as last week’s wedding cake. Despite a promising set-up and talented performers, it leaks air like a tire that ran over a tack. Debra Messing (“Will […]

Fascination

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

Lust. Betrayal. Revenge. Greed. Murder. Somehow, all of these things become dull in the preposterous and yet decidedly un-fascinating “Fascination,” a movie that plays as though the script was being made up on the spot. By aliens not quite familiar […]

Hide and Seek

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 spooky child, creepy rural setting, and eccentric characters are the key props in this atmospheric thriller, where strong acting and quiet scenes are more terrifying than on-screen mayhem. Dr. David Callaway (Robert De Niro, in a solid but uninspired […]

A Love Song for Bobby Long

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is one of those insufferable movies where three bundles of quirk and backstory intended to approximate characters are thrown together because of some writer’s fantasy. The writer may hope that he can show them learning something from each other […]

Assault on Precinct 13

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 juicy premise, a powerhouse cast, and energetic direction combine for a satisfying thriller about a police station under seige. It’s a big-budget remake of John Carpenter’s 1976 film of the same title. Carpenter wrote, produced, edited, and scored the […]

Elektra

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

To paraphrase the most famous line from A League of Their Own, “there’s no crying in comic book movies.” At least there shouldn’t be, not by the superhero, anyway. But this is a comic book movie that feels like it […]

Coach Carter

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

We all love movies about underdog teams that come from behind because they (1) learn the importance of teamwork, (2) learn the importance of discipline and of respect for themselves and each other, (3) are galvanized by an inspiring leader, […]

Racing Stripes

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 zebra who thinks he is a racehorse takes on the thoroughbreds in the best live action talking-animal movie since the beloved Babe. Horse trainer turned farmer Nolan Walsh (Bruce Greenwood) finds a baby zebra and brings him home. For […]

Are We There Yet?

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

Robert Benchley once wrote, “There are two kinds of travel, first class and with children.” But the longest, naggiest, car-sickiest travel with children cannot be any more tedious than this weak and dragged-out generic fluff that wastes the talents of […]

White Noise

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

Remember in Poltergeist when the little blonde girl was talking to the television broadcasting only that snowy nothingness they used to show when there was nothing on the air back in the days before 24/7 programming? And then she turned […]

In Good Company

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Synergy!” says Carter Duryea (Topher Grace). That’s the answer to his two most pressing questions: (1) What idea can he pull out of a hat to help him meet the very ambitious financial goals set for him in his new […]

Meet the Fockers

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

I am not a huge fan of comedies of excruciation, that genre of movies that draw much of their humor from some poor idiot’s painful and humiliating loss of control. But I can appreciate the way that the best of […]

Fat Albert

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Hey hey hey! Fat Albert is back. The original Fat Albert was a friend of the young Bill Cosby, who turned his childhood adventures into a popular stand-up routine during his days as a comic. In the 1970’s, Fat Albert […]

Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

They may horrify tender-hearted parents, but the Unfortunate Events series by Lemony Snicket (pseudonym of Daniel Handler) are wildly popular with school-age kids. “These books are among the most unpleasant in the world,” Snicket warns crisply on the dust jacket […]

Flight of the Phoenix

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

This trim little adventure saga about the survivors of a plane crash in the Mongolian desert doesn’t waste any time assigning heartwarming characteristics or backstories to each member of the group; we barely learn most of their names. This is […]

The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Another quirkfest from Wes Anderson (Rushmore, Bottle Rocket, The Royal Tannenbaums), this film has some of the most imaginatively charming images on screen this year, especially a tiny rainbow-striped seahorse and a cutaway side view of a ship that is […]

Million Dollar Baby

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Million Dollar Baby” is a strong contender, but it suffers a TKO in the last round. At first, it is a fresh, assured, and evocative take on the classic boxing formula. A tired old trainer (Clint Eastwood as Frankie), abandoned […]

Spanglish

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Every few years, writer/director James Brooks makes another smart, sensitive movie about smart, sensitive people who love each other and drive each other crazy. In “Spanglish,” as in Broadcast News, Terms of Endearment, and As Good as it Gets, his […]

Blade: Trinity

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Let’s not pretend that “Trinity”, the third chapter in the ongoing tale of a human-vampire hybrid out to kill all vampires, is a good movie and instead say it is a solid “Blade” movie – meaning, if you are not […]

Ocean’s Twelve

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

The movie’s irresistible tagline is “Twelve is the new eleven.” But this twelve is more like the old eleven, the first “Ocean’s 11″ movie, starring Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack, where the chief pleasure is in seeing how much […]

The Aviator

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

A true story that is both touching and thrilling and tons of talent on both sides of the camera are enough to make this a good movie, but not enough to make it a great one. It is in part […]

Closer

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

With an anguished wail, Larry (Clive Owen) asks where he can find intimacy. In a private room in a strip club, where the rules say that you can look, but not touch. The stripper’s ex-boyfriend is now romantically involved with […]

House of Flying Daggers

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

An officer about to arrest a beautiful blind dancer who works in a brothel tells her that if she can win the “Echo Game” he will let her go. She is surrounded by 100 drums. And then, in one of […]

The Chorus

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

A shy teacher comes to a school for wayward boys and decides to organize a choir. This plot could be a cheesy after-school special or Sister Act 3. Or, it could be this lovely, tender, unpretentious French film, a small […]

Christmas with the Kranks

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

This meretricious claptrap is exactly the kind of baloney it purports to be saving us from. There’s a reliable genre of family holiday movie that is made up of three-fourths slapstick followed by 15 minutes of sentiment. In this case, […]

Paper Clips

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is the touching story of Whitwell, Tennessee,a small coal mining community (population 1600) outside of Chatanooga. The population is almost entirely white and entirely Christian. When the local school set out to teach children about tolerance and diversity, the […]

Hotel Rwanda

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“How can they not intervene when they witness such atrocities?” Rwandan hotel manager Paul Rusesabagina (Don Cheadle) asks an American journalist (Joaquin Phoenix). “They’ll see this footage,” he answers. “They’ll say ‘Oh my god, that’s horrible,” and go on eating […]

National Treasure

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is a big, dumb, stunts and explosions movie that doesn’t quite make it even by action movie standards because it has a big, dumb script. Two Oscar-winning actors, location filming, tricked-up quick cuts, a thundering and blaring score, enormous […]

Beyond the Sea

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Parents should know that the movie has situations and behavior that may be upsetting to some viewers including tense and emotional confrontations. Characters drink (one abuses alcohol in response to emotional distress) and smoke and use strong language. There are […]

Kinsey

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

It’s tempting to begin as Dr. Kinsey would himself, by putting him in the appropriate category. Pioneering sex researcher Alfred Kinsey was not a physician or an anthropologist, the disciplines that would seem most likely for the study of human […]

The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Spongebob Squarepants” is a pleasantly silly animated television show for children that has earned the gratitude of parents for not being sugary or dull. It also has a bit of a cult following among college students and other fans around […]

Saw

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Grizzly does not mean scary, which is a lesson that first-time director James Wan and co-writer (and actor) Leigh Whannell do not master in this 100 minute long mish-mash of a horror flick. A thoroughly intriguing if ghoulish premise, some […]

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

In the first movie, Bridget Jones (Renee Zellwegger) learned that she could be loved just as she was. Now she has to figure out whether she can love herself. As the sequel begins, she has had six blissful weeks with […]

Tarnation

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Jonathan Caouette, “Tarnation’s” director/writer/producer/cinematographer/ composer/editor and leading man, took home movies and other family memorabilia, added some cultural flotsam and jetsam, ran them through a computer program, and made a searing and unforgettable documentary of love and loss. It is […]

The Polar Express

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Are you sure?” This is a question asked several times during this movie, based on the exquisitely lovely Chris Van Allsburg book. It is a fitting question for a story about a boy struggling with his beliefs about Christmas. It […]

Undertow

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Being Julia

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Julia (Annette Bening) is a star who craves an audience. She thrills the paying customers in the theater night after night, but that is not enough for her anymore. Her husband, Michael(Jeremy Irons), a former actor turned manager, wasn’t paying […]

Sideways

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Miles (Paul Giamatti), dips his nose deep inside the bowl of a glass of white wine and it is clear that this is where he is happiest and most at home. All of his mind, body, and spirit are focused […]

Ray

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

An extraordinary actor plays an extraordinary person in “Ray,” the life of a brilliant musician and performer who triumphed over poverty, blindness, and racism through talent, passion, and courage. It is an almost insurmountable challenge for an actor to play […]

Birth

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

In the middle of a story that lurches from unsettling to preposterous by way of sheer ookiness, there is a moment of sheer, breathtaking bravura, shared by actress and director. At her engagement party, Anna (Nicole Kidman) has just been […]

Surviving Christmas

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

In what is intended to be one of the most revealing and touching scenes in “Surviving Christmas,” the main character turns a lovely gesture into a crass, garish, and cringe-inducing display. Take away the revealing and touching part, and you’ve […]

The Grudge

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is one of those “Don’t go into the house” movies, a remake of a popular Japanese horror film by Takashi Shimizu, the writer/director of the original. It is again set in Japan, but this time, it is a group […]

The Incredibles

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Elastigirl (Holly Hunter), a superheroine whose limbs and torso can stretch the length of an Olympic swimming pool, pauses for just a second on the way to saving the world to check out her rear end in the form-fitting super-suit. […]

Team America: World Police

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the team behind “South Park,” take such pleasure in being naughty that it makes their work more silly than smutty. It’s all just too cheerful to be shocking, even with a character made out of […]

Taxi

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Superman has kryptonite,” explains Washburn (Jimmy Fallon), showing that even the greats have their weaknesses. “Indiana Jones has snakes. Whitney Houston has Bobby Brown.” (Ba-dum-pump) He might as well have added that movies have former Saturday Night Live stars, who […]

Friday Night Lights

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

On the very first day of pre-season practice, Coach Gary Gaines (Billy Bob Thornton) tells his team, the Permian High Panthers of Odessa, Texas, that he expects them to be perfect. By the end of the season, in that last […]

Raise Your Voice

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

Squeaky-clean Hilary Duff’s latest movie plays like a cross between a Disney-fied music video and a script developed by girls playing with Barbies. So, it will please its target audience of tween girls while leaving parents relieved, if not entertained. […]

Shall We Dance?

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Chicago lawyer John Clark (Richard Gere) writes wills. He listens to people sum up their lives — their assets, their liabilities, their legacies. When it’s done, they ask, “Is that it, then?” and he tells them, “That’s it for the […]

Whiz Kids!

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Preschool
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Preschool
Movie Release Date: 2004

Children 18 months to three years old will enjoy this gentle DVD, filled with happy children learning colors, numbers, letters, and just enjoying each other. Babies and toddlers will be drawn into the fun, calling out the answers and playing […]

Shark Tale

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

This hip-hop/mob action comedy set undersea is fast, fresh, fun, and finny — I mean –punny — I mean funny. Okay, you watch the movie and see if you don’t come out making silly jokes like that. This isn’t a […]

Shaun of the Dead

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

First Daughter

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

This one is right off the conveyer belt. It’s numbingly predictable due to a screenplay straight from the “how to write a script” formula book, which may be forgiveable, but it is also thuddingly dull due to performances and direction […]

The Forgotten

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

This year’s most popular movie theme — memory — turns up once again, though this time what someone, um, forgot was the script. Oh there are situations here, but I would not say that they rise to the level of […]

Wimbledon

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Sun splashed shots and a series of beautiful, thoroughly English sets get this sports-romantic-comedy over the net, but a clumsy romance with flat dialogue means “Wimbledon” is far from an ace. Peter Colt (a glum-looking but winningly wry Paul Bettany) […]

Mr. 3000

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Bernie Mac doesn’t hit this one out of the park, but he manages a solid double in his first starring role, as a retired baseball player who has to get back into shape and suit up for three more hits. […]

I Heart Huckabees

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

We don’t think about it much, but most comedies are about existential crises. Whether it’s the bewitched lovers in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, an heiress grappling with a leopard in Bringing Up Baby or Moe bopping Larry, and Curly, comedies […]

Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Dashing pilot Joe “Sky Captain” Sullivan (Jude Law) and intrepid reporter Polly Perkins (Gwyneth Paltrow) investigate the disappearance of a group of top scientists and the invasion of enormous robots in this magnificently imaginative tribute to the adventure films of […]

Ladder 49

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is one of those “they don’t make them like that anymore” movies, an unabashed love letter to firefighters that might as well have been made sixty years ago. It is irony-free, which is fine — certainly, we could all […]

Resident Evil: Apocalypse

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

That nasty old Umbrella Corporation, “the largest and most powerful corporation in the world,” is up to its bad old tricks again. This time the evil virus that it unleashed in its huge underground facility, The Hive, in Resident Evil […]

Cellular

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This serviceable little thriller suffers even more than most from the dreaded “none of this would have happened if our hero had even made one logical choice” syndrome. It more than makes up for it with its brisk pace (less […]

Finding Neverland

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

This much we know. James M. Barrie was inspired by his friendship with some fatherless boys, including one named Peter, to write one of the most enduring and beloved stories of all time, “Peter Pan.” The story of the man […]

Evergreen

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

Fourteen-year-old Henri (Addie Land) and her mother Kate (Cara Seymour) never quite make it. They are moving — again — this time to live with Kate’s mother. We don’t need details; it is clear from their tired eyes that Kate […]

Hero

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

The narrator tells us that mastery of the sword is connected to mastery of calligraphy. This movie shows that mastery of film-making is as well. The elegant precision of the ravishing images gives each scene a timeless beauty. “The ultimate […]

A Dirty Shame

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Somehow I don’t see this movie following Hairspray to become a Tony-award-winning Broadway musical for the whole family. Too bad, because those would be some musical numbers. Once again, John Waters has made a Baltimore-based movie about people outside of […]

The Cookout

posted by rkumar
C-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

It’s too bad that a fresh, smart, and courageous look at the conflicts African-Americans feel about racist stereotypes that sometimes feel more real to them then they would like to admit gets lost in a a tired and lazy script […]

Danny Deckchair

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

We get one of these every few months whether we need one or not, so “Danny Deckchair” is this season’s quirky-characters-with-accents comedy. Unlike its main character, it never quite achives lift-off, but it is a pleasant little diversion with some […]

Wicker Park

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is one of those dopey thrillers that are frustrating to write about because I can’t tell you why it is dopey without spoiling the surprises. Even dumb surprises are sacrosanct according to the Code of the Critic. I’ll do […]

Criminal

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The con man’s greatest asset is not the gullibility of the mark, but the greed. It is much easier to persuade someone that you are dishonest than honest, especially if he is intrigued by the chance to be just a […]

Vanity Fair

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Our first peek into the world of this film is a peacock feather, and it sets the stage both visually and metaphorically for a colorful story about a woman who uses her allure to get what she wants. Thackeray’s Vanity […]

Benji: Off the Leash!

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

The dogs are cute, the intentions are good, and there’s a refreshing absence of potty humor, but that’s about the best that can be said about the fifth movie about loveable mutt Benji from writer/director Joe Camp. In past films, […]

We Don’t Live Here Anymore

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Situated somewhere between John Updike and “Knott’s Landing,” this is a story of suburban angst and adultery, with meaningful glances, inexpressible longing, fumbled groping, and a lot of hangovers. Two couples’ lives overlap so completely that the boundaries between them […]

Head in the Clouds

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is a soapy saga of love, war, and many, many hairstyles. The hair signifies the passage of time in the story of a love triangle that lasts through the turbulent decades of Europe in from the roaring 20’s through […]

Silver City

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

A movie about a dim, rich, conservative political candidate named “Pilager” (pronounced “pillager”) who finds a corpse on the end of his fishing line when he is makng a commercial is not going for subtlety. Did I mention that the […]

Code 46

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The world director Michael Winterbottom creates is much more interesting then the story or the characters. The story is set in a future when reproductive technology is so advanced and widespread that the odds are good the person who looks […]

Mean Creek

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

When Sam (Rory Culkin) is beat up by a school bully, his older brother Rocky (Trevor Morgan) and his friend Marty (Scott Mechlowicz) plot revenge. They will invite the bully (Josh Peck as George) on a boating trip, telling him […]

The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Another sweet lollipop of a movie, “Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement” picks up five years later than the first and, though missing some of the original’s spark and humor, it’s a pleasant romp for girls of all ages. It’s the […]

Yu-Gi-Oh!

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

When a movie begins by telling you that “Eternity does not last forever,” it is clear that no one behind it is paying much attention to whether the script makes sense, so you’d better not worry about it, either. Oh, […]

The Blind Swordsman: Zatoichi

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

There is a tap-dancing scene in the samurai film, “Zatoichi”. For fans of the genre, using the words “samurai” and “tap-dancing” in the same sentence should capture both the eye and the quintessential weirdness that can be Japanese cinema for […]

Without a Paddle

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Without a Paddle” is also without talent, originality, anything to laugh at, or a reason to buy a ticket. The opening moments of faux home movies showing four boys up to all kinds of faux hi-jinks, and then we then […]

Everybody Says I’m Fine

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2001
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2001

This bittersweet fairy tale centers on Xen (Rehaan Engineer), the owner of an upscale Bombay beauty shop, who can read the minds of his clients when he cuts their hair. The source of this power is a devastating loss. His […]

Garden State

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Andrew Largeman’s head seems to float in the air. Largeman (director/writer Zach Braff) has been given a shirt made from the fabric left over when his mother covered the walls, so when he wears it, his body blends in with […]

Collateral

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

As cool as a jazz riff from a tenor sax, this stylish and powerful thriller has it all — consistently absorbing characters, twisty dialogue and an even twistier story, and action that engages the heart as it thumps a little […]

Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This unpretentiously genial little stoner comedy has a couple of things going for it. The characters and jokes are a bit above average for a genre with admittedly low standards. And its very unambitiousness gives the film moments that almost […]

The Village

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

The ending of this movie will infuriate some people, but for me it was a lot of fun and worked on many levels. And I thought about it all the way home. However, it’s just about impossible to say anything […]

Little Black Book

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This would-be romantic comedy is romance-free, comedy-free, charm-free, and apparently carb-free as well, with leading ladies Brittany Murphy and Holly Hunter looking toned but stringy and underfed. Murphy plays Stacy, a television producer whose mother thinks that the cure for […]

A Home at the End of the World

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The Hours author Michael Cunningham has adapted his earlier novel for the screen and the result is admirable, respectable, but not completely successful. The book is the internal musings of the four main characters. What made it work was the […]

Thunderbirds

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

There are two kinds of people in the world, the people who know the 1960’s British television show “Thunderbirds” well enough to hum the theme song and those who say “who?” The show was enormously popular with children and something […]

Catwoman

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Catwoman” is kitty litter. Awkward and clumsy as a cat in high heels, this version of the comic book character Catwoman does not have enough to sustain one life, much less nine. Written in the comic books as Batman’s female […]

The Bourne Supremacy

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is a smooth thriller for grown-ups. That means it has lots of chase scenes and action scenes but the mood is dark, even grim. The dialogue is smart but not smart-alecky. No one wears a dinner jacket and there […]

The Manchurian Candidate

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This sleek and supple thriller features powerhouse performances but never quite persuades us that it has anything to add to the cold war classic starring Frank Sinatra and Angela Lansbury. As in the first film, the focus is on soldier […]

I, Robot

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

Now this is what I call a summer popcorn movie! It’s hard to say which has the sleeker profile, Will Smith (everything you could ask for in an action hero) or the Chicago skyline of 2035, as envisioned by director […]

She Hate Me

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The hero of a popular radio program and movie serial of the 1930’s and 40’s was “Jack Armstrong, the All-American Boy,” whose very name evokes wholesome strength and fortitude. The hero of this provocative, ambitious, and uneven movie is an […]

Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This unpretentiously genial little stoner comedy has a couple of things going for it. The characters and jokes are a bit above average for a genre with admittedly low standards. And its very unambitiousness gives the film moments that almost […]

A Cinderella Story

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Girls will love this fresh, funny, and sweet, update of the Cinderella story, and it might win some fans among their older siblings and parents as well. High school senior Sam (Hilary Duff) lives in the San Fernando Valley with […]

Sleepover

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Fourteen-year-old girls at a sleepover party violate every rule they agreed to. They lie, cheat, vandalize, steal, sneak out of the house and into a bar, order a drink with a man they met on the internet, and sneak into […]

The Corporation

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

This documentary from writer Joel Bakan and directors Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott argues that “today’s dominant institution” is not government or the church but the corporation. While Michael Moore participates and provides some of the film’s liveliest moments, the […]

King Arthur

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Saying that this “King Arthur” is “The Truth behind the Legend” is an overstatement of epic proportions, making the movie’s tagline the only thing epic about it. The battle scenes, the dialogue and the attractive actors all place this film […]

Bus Stop

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:1956
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 1956

Bo (Don Murray) is a rough cowboy who comes to the city for the first time with his worldlier friend, Virgil (Arthur O’Connell), to compete in a rodeo. They meet Cherie (Marilyn Monroe), a good-hearted girl who sings and hustles […]

Spider-Man 2

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is why they invented movies. It is a dazzling story of love, loss, adventure, courage, heartbreak, tough choices, and tender feelings with a rescue from a burning building, a runaway train, a world-class villain, and a really great kiss. […]

Two Brothers

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is the story of magnificent creatures gorgeously photographed in a story that is quietly told and genuinely touching. Two tigers meet in the jungle of Southeast Asia and are drawn to one another. Soon they have twins, shy Sangha […]

Fahrenheit 9/11

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is the movie that won the movie world’s highest accolade — a sort of international Oscar — the Cannes Film Festival’s Palme D’Or. And it is the movie that columnist Christopher Hitchens attacked as “a sinister exercise in moral […]

White Chicks

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Appealing performers and a couple of very funny moments don’t make up for a lazy and generic script in this predictable farce about two black male FBI agents who go undercover as spoiled rich white girls. I knew we were […]

Control Room

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Truth is a mosaic. Facts are the tiles that have to be pieced together, and it is only in standing back and looking at the whole that one can see the patterns. This documentary by Jehane Noujaim tries to provide […]

The Clearing

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Why would such a murky movie be called “The Clearing?” Robert Redford plays Wayne, a very successful businessman who lives in a beautiful house with Eileen, his loving if somewhat reserved wife (Helen Mirren). When he does not show up […]

The Notebook

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

I was really hoping for this year’s Bridges of Madison County, a big-budget production that turned a mediocre weepie book into a better-than-mediocre weepie movie. I held my handkerchief in my hand, but no tears came. Instead, the full-scale Hollywood […]

The Stepford Wives

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The women’s movement of the 1970’s was one of the most seismic social movements in U.S. history because it affected every single household. It was about more than equal pay for equal work; it was about re-thinking every asumption about […]

The Terminal

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

One of the most enduring themes in fiction is the journey. From The Odyssey and the search for the holy grail to to The Wizard of Oz, The African Queen, and Finding Nemo, the story of heroes who have to […]

Around the World in 80 Days

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

This movie may take its title from the Jules Verne classic adventure about the man who circled the globe in 80 days to win a bet, but it is really just a Jackie Chan movie, and a below-average one at […]

Stepford Wives

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The women’s movement of the 1970’s was one of the most seismic social movements in U.S. history because it affected every single household. It was about more than equal pay for equal work; it was about re-thinking every asumption about […]

The Chronicles of Riddick

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Pitch Black was an outer space horror film about a group stranded on a planet with some very scary creatures. One member of the group was Riddick (Vin Diesel), a convict being transported to prison. His ability to see in […]

Before Sunset

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Fair warning: five minutes into this film the critic checked out of my head and the fan took over. It may not be great art and it won’t work for everyone, but it kept me smiling all day. Nine years […]

Garfield

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Garfield is a big, orange, lazy glutton of a cat created by cartoonist Jim Davis in 1978. His musings on life’s essential concerns — meaning mostly how he can get more of everything, especially food and attention, without any effort […]

De Lovely

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

De-Lovely is Di-Sapointing. On the asset side, we have the glorious songs of Cole Porter, the most urbane and elegant composer-lyricist of the 20th century. He’s the top. And we have suitably elegant and urbane production design, with sets and […]

Soul Plane

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

What happens when you take a relatively big budget for a comedy ($16 million), a tried-and-true comic vehicle in the plane from which no one can escape, and a handful of actors clearly having fun? Apparently, you get 86 minutes […]

The Day After Tomorrow

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

A disaster movie has to be about more than the cool special effects. It does not have to have compelling characters or memorable dialoge. It does not even have to make sense in logical terms, but it has to feel […]

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

Harry Potter is 13 in this third movie based on the globally-popular series of books by J.K. Rowling, and the movie itself seems to be entering adolescence, darker themes, darker images, and darker emotions. It also has a bracingly welcome […]

Stateside

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Good intentions and passionate feelings are sometimes the enemy of vivid and coherent storytelling, as this movie, based on the real-life experiences of its writer/director, demonstrates. Sometimes the person who lived through it is just too close to realize what […]

Breakin’ All the Rules

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Bright stars can’t save this over-plotted and under-directed romantic comedy. Jamie Foxx plays Quincy, a magazine editor who is about to propose to his girlfriend when she dumps him. So he writes a book about how to break up with […]

Shrek 2

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Oh, stop reading now and just go to the movie. All you need to know from me is that “Shrek 2″ is pure enjoyment, with stunningly brilliant technology and hilarious performances. And (here is the most important part) it has […]

Troy

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The Iliad begins, “Sing, O goddess, of the anger of Achilles.” It is a story about love, honor, betrayal, fate, ambition, and of course, hubris. And it is the adventure of the best warrior there ever was or will be. […]

Van Helsing

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

Forgive me, I have to say it. This is one vampire movie with bite. And it’s the first real popcorn pleasure of the year, a deliciously entertaining thrill ride that pleasurably tweaks new thrills from old stories. It starts with […]

New York Minute

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

People in movies tend to fall into two categories. Some are actors and some are movie stars. A few are both. Mary-Kate and Ashley Olson are not actresses and they are not movie stars. What they are is a brand. […]

Bobby Jones, Stroke of Genius

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

Bobby Jones was a great man and a great golfer. He deserves a better movie than this one, as clumsy as its title. Jones may be the greatest golfer who ever lived. He’s the only one to win all four […]

Raising Helen

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

They say that it isn’t adults who create children; it’s children who create adults. And they’re right. This theme resonates deeply with us and has inspired many, many movies, going back before the days of Shirley Temple. There’s nothing wrong […]

Godsend

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

I think it is a good bet that some day there will be an Oscar lifetime achievement award for Robert DeNiro. And I think it is a better bet that clips from this movie will be nowhere near that event. […]

Envy

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

I wonder how many critics are going to analogize their reviews to the wildly successful product that leads to the title emotion of this movie: “VaPOOrize,” an aerosol spray that eliminates dog poop. Then there will be those who will […]

Super Size Me

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

Mordantly funny and trenchantly sobering, this is a Big Mac attack you can sink your teeth into. And then it will bite you back. Film-maker Morgan Spurlock takes on American fast food culture in general and McDonald’s in particular in […]

Laws of Attraction

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“The Laws of Attraction” demonstrates no understanding of either attraction or laws. I don’t just mean the completely innacurate portrayal of law practice and court proceedings in the film. I mean the fundamental laws that make a movie appealing to […]

Saved

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The first thing teenagers figure out is that it is enticingly easy to make fun of believers in any category. What’s nice about this movie is that it does so while still entirely respectful of belief. It begins as a […]

Man on Fire

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Two of today’s most talented and charismatic screen performers are lost in an over-big, over-loud, over-heated, over-long, over-everything mess of a story about this year’s most popular movie theme, revenge. Denzel Washington plays Creasy, a burnt-out hired gun who asks […]

Mean Girls

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Author Judith Viorst once wrote about a little girl who looked over at another child and reported on her assessment. “Her dress is very pretty,” she said, “but mine is very prettier.” She was clearly on her way to becoming […]

Shaolin Soccer

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

You know, we just don’t get enough kung fu soccer fairy tale movies. At least, I know it now, because this one is such fun I can’t wait to see another. The most successful Hong Kong film ever, this is […]

Clifford’s Really Big Movie

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Preschool
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Preschool
Movie Release Date: 2004

Clifford is not just a Big Red Dog; he’s a big, red phenomenon, hero of a series of books by Norman Bridwell, an animated PBS series, and even a live road show. Now he has moved (briefly) to the big […]

Close Your Eyes

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Those who like atmospheric thrillers that feature pentagrams and second sight and mysterious incantations from ancient texts will enjoy guaranteed goosebumps in this story of a doctor who tries to help the little girl who escaped from a serial killer […]

Kill Bill Vol. 2

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Be careful what you ask for. In my review of Kill Bill Vol. 1, I admired its pure style and mastery of the language of pure cinema but said that I hoped the sequel would provide more character and texture. […]

13 Going on 30

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

A girl who suffers total humiliation at her 13th birthday party wishes she could be 30. The next morning, she is all grown up, living in a swanky Manhattan apartment with a gorgeous face and figure (played by Jennifer Garner). […]

Dogville

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Dogville” will inspire passionate responses, partly because it is deliberately provocative but more because it

The Whole Ten Yards

posted by rkumar
F
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
F
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Could it BE any more atrocious? This stupifyingly appalling mess of a movie takes the definition of “not funny” to a new low. The gravitational pull of its massive lack of humor is so strong that if you listen carefully […]

Ella Enchanted

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

In keeping with the fairy tale theme, I will begin this review with a warning: If you want to experience the real pleasures this movie has to offer, do not expect a faithful re-creation of the book. The plot, the […]

Hellboy

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

In the “it was a dark and stormy night” genre of graphic novels (that’s comic books with literary aspirations), we are guaranteed to find a Sam Spade-inspired anti-hero with a wicked sense of humor and a weakness for a dangerous […]

Walking Tall

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Apparently, the people who stage professional wrestling matches looked for the story that was most like a wrestling match and picked the story of Buford Pusser, the sheriff who cleaned up a small Southern town. That is, if your definition […]

Mr. Deeds Goes to Town

posted by rkumar
A
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:1936
A
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 1936

Longfellow Deeds (Gary Cooper), of Mandrake Falls, Vermont, is a quiet bachelor who writes rhymes for birthday cards and plays the tuba for concentration. Informed that he has inherited twenty million dollars, he goes to New York City to collect […]

Home on the Range

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

I love it when Disney doesn’t take itself too seriously. No one tried to reach for the stars or make this into a classic. It’s just a cute little story about some not-so-contented cows who save the day. It modestly […]

The Punisher

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

It’s not as easy to turn a comic book into a movie as you might think, even though comics and illustrated novels are closer to cinema in conception than any other art form. But as this second attempt to turn […]

The Ladykillers

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Tom Hanks and the Coen brothers take the title, the concept (sweet little old lady outwits criminals), the teeth, and the slightly sepulchral laugh from the 1955 English black comedy classic. They may miss the primary point (and joke) of […]

Never Die Alone

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2003
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2003

This movie’s greatest strength is also its greatest weakness — it wants to be more than the usual drug dealer shoot-em-up. It deserves some credit for its ambitions. But those ambitions tip it over into pretentious melodrama that only emphasizes […]

The United States of Leland

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

The murder mystery at the center of this overly plotted but beautifully acted movie is not the who but the why. Leland (Ryan Gosling) seems like a reasonably pleasant and easy-going kid. And then one day he kills a developmentally […]

Never Die Alone

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Scooby fans will enjoy this affectionate live-action tribute to the unquenchably popular cartoon series. Wisely abandoning the first version’s wobbly attempt to appeal both to children with silly scares and older teens with self-aware irony and double entendres, this one […]

Dawn of the Dead

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Have you ever wanted a fresh start? To live in a shopping mall without needing your credit card? How about if these fantasies and more were writ large in a movie scary enough to remind you how good life is […]

Taking Lives

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Illeana Scott (Angelina Jolie) is an FBI profiler who immerses herself in her cases. She eats alone in an elegant hotel room, staring at photos of crime scenes and corpses. When construction equipment uncovers a dead body, she lies down […]

The Prince & Me

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

The title says it all. This is a classic Cinderella story about a hardworking girl from the Wisconsin dairy farm who wants to go to medical school but falls for a handsome and charming foreign exchange student who happens to […]

Spartan

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

There are three different stories in this latest effort from writer/director David Mamet (Glengarry Glen Ross, State and Main). Only one of the three is pretty good — a rescue mission to retrieve the kidnapped daughter of the President. The […]

Secret Window

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

We know what scares Stephen King. That most prolific of writers is still terrified by an empty computer screen, or, even worse, a screen with writing that is unfixably bad. And that author whose imagination has kept millions of happily […]

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

posted by rkumar
A+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This fabulously imaginative and deliciously loopy romance is the sweetest movie yet from the magnificently twisty mind behind Adaptation, Human Nature, and Being John Malkovich. Once again Charlie Kaufman plays with the themes of identity, time, memory, and attraction in […]

Starsky & Hutch

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is the latest in the genre I call lunchbox movies. Here is how these movies get made. A 30-something studio executive’s eyes light up when someone suggests a movie based on a cheesy-but-popular 1970’s television show. “I had that […]

The Girl Next Door

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is a romantic fantasy about a straight arrow high school senior who falls for the girl next door, a porn star. That’s not the most offensive part, though. It is a shameless rip-off of the far better Risky Business, […]

Jersey Girl

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Kevin Smith is the writer/director of some of the most cheerfully profane and wildly politically incorrect movies of all time, including Clerks, Dogma, and Chasing Amy. His characters — and his scripts — are often immature and outrageous. But Smith’s […]

Broken Lizard’s Club Dread

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Does the world really need a comic slasher movie? Or, to be more precise, does it need another failed attempt at one? The would-be wild and crazy guys from would-be comedy troupe Broken Lizard have now produced a second film, […]

Twisted

posted by rkumar
D
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
D
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Fifteen minutes into this movie, before the very first murder victim turned up, I figured out who the murderer was. That left me the rest of the movie to ponder much more fascinating mysteries, like why any of these people […]

The Passion of The Christ

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

This is both more and less than a movie. In one sense, it is less a movie than the heartfelt prayer of a gifted film-maker. In another it is a narrow and harrowing perspective on a story that, no matter […]

Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
Movie Release Date: 2004

Lindsay Lohan plays a 15-year-old who has a lot to be dramatic about, or at least she thinks she does. First of all, her parents had the bad judgment to name her “Mary,” when she was born to be a […]

Welcome to Mooseport

posted by rkumar
B
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
B
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

It’s a juicy premise: The most popular President of modern times retires to his summer home in the tiny town of Mooseport, Maine and ends up running for mayor against the handyman who owns the local hardware store — and […]

Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

Somebody, please put this baby in a corner. Before we get into the reasons, let’s recap briefly why the original Dirty Dancing was so irresistibly watchable, because that will remind us of everything that this version is missing. The original […]

50 First Dates

posted by rkumar
C+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 on appeal for crude sexual humor and drug references
Movie Release Date:2004
DVD Release Date:2004
C+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 on appeal for crude sexual humor and drug references
Movie Release Date: 2004
DVD Release Date: 2004

Lucy (Drew Barrymore) wakes up every morning with no memory of anything that happened since her brain was injured in a car crash 18 months before. For the rest of us, everything that happens in this movie is just too, […]

Miracle

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
Movie Release Date: 2004

Sportscaster Al Michaels unforgettably called out “Do you believe in miracles? Yes!” as the 1980 US Olympic hockey team beat the Russians. They then went on to win the gold medal. And so the team, the last group of amateurs […]

You Got Served

posted by rkumar
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Movie Release Date:2004
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Movie Release Date: 2004

This would be mindless but enjoyably cheesy cinema fluff if it did not cross the line into the category of the unforgivable by using the murder of a child as a plot contrivance. That is a complete violation of the […]

The Big Bounce

posted by rkumar
B-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
B-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

“Big Bounce” wants to be comic caper movie, but the real crime is inflicted on the Elmore Leonard book credited with inspiring it. You can tell that somewhere in there there is a book with colorful characters and a couple […]

Touching the Void

posted by rkumar
A-
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date:2004
A-
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Movie Release Date: 2004

Repeat after me: “We know they survived because they are up on the screen telling the story.” You’ll need to hold onto that thought tightly to get you through this almost unbearably tense re-enactment of a terrible mountain-climbing accident and […]

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