Originally created 10/07/04

Mini reviews



Movies are listed with theater locations through Wednesday. Reviews without star ratings are from critics other than Roger Ebert. Listings are subject to change. Call theaters for times. For an online movie guide, see augustachronicle.com/movies.

COMING FRIDAY

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS (PG-13) H.G. Bissinger's novel of west Texas football comes to the screen with Billy Bob Thornton as the coach. Augusta Exchange, Aiken and Evans

RAISE YOUR VOICE (H, PG) Hilary Duff is described by another character as "like some kind of retro Brady Buncher," and that's so true it hurts, in this dumb formula movie about a music student who suffers a tragedy and wants to go to music camp to begin rebuilding her life. Augusta Exchange, Aiken and Evans

TAXI (H, PG-13) The extravagant talent of Queen Latifah is tamed in a lame-brained action comedy that pairs her with Jimmy Fallon as an incompetent cop. Augusta Exchange, Aiken and Evans

ONGOING

A CINDERELLA STORY (H, PG) Dreary, flat, dismal and routine recycling of the Cinderella story. Ends today at Augusta Village

ALIEN VS. PREDATOR (PG-13) Battle of the sci-fi monster franchises features lots of action and gross-outs. Masters and Augusta Village

ANACONDAS: THE HUNT FOR THE BLOOD ORCHID (PG-13) The follow-up to the 1997 action hit Anaconda tracks an expedition in the jungles of Borneo that stumbles into mating season for monstrously large, ravenous snakes. Ends today at Augusta Exchange

CATWOMAN (H, PG-13) After Halle Berry discovers corporate skullduggery and is killed, an Egyptian cat named Midnight breathes new life into her, and she becomes Catwoman. Masters and Augusta Village

CELLULAR (HHH, PG-13) Kim Basinger is kidnapped and held in an attic; her child and husband are threatened. The phone in the attic is shattered, but as a science teacher she knows enough to piece it together. Augusta Exchange and Evans, ends today at Aiken

COLLATERAL (HHH, R) A long night in the life of a Los Angeles cabbie (Jamie Foxx), hired by a killer (Tom Cruise) who keeps him at gunpoint. Ends today at Augusta Exchange, begins Friday at Augusta Village and Masters

DODGEBALL: A TRUE UNDERDOG STORY (HHH, PG-13) Vince Vaughn plays the owner of a bankrupt gym, and Ben Stiller is the manic owner of the multimillion-dollar muscle rival. Ends today at Augusta Village

FIRST DAUGHTER (PG-13) Katie Holmes (Pieces of April) plays a U.S. president's daughter whose freshman year in college includes romance and danger. Evans, Begins Friday at Aiken

HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN (HHH, PG) Harry returns to Hogwarts under a cloud. Sirius Black might intend Harry as his next victim. Augusta Village

HERO (PG-13) An early Chinese warlord dreams of uniting his nation, but is the target of three assassins. Jet Li claims to have killed all three. Ends today at Augusta Exchange and Evans

I, ROBOT (HH, PG-13) Disappointing adaptation of the Isaac Asimov stories about robots derailed by contradictions in the Three Laws of Robotics. Masters and Augusta Village

KING ARTHUR (HHH, PG-13) Arthurian movie with Clive Owen as a lean, hard-edged Arthur and Keira Knightley as Guinevere. Ends today at Augusta Village

LADDER 49 (HHH, PG-13) Uncommonly effective film about firefighters, what they do and why they do it. Joaquin Phoenix stars as a young firefighter who we follow from his first day as a rookie; John Travolta is his captain. Augusta Exchange, Aiken and Evans

MR. 3000 (PG-13) Bernie Mac plays a baseball slugger who retired, with his team in a pennant race, after he made his way into the record books with 3,000 hits. Seven years later, three of those hits are declared ineligible, so he returns to the game to reclaim his record. Augusta Exchange, Aiken and Evans

NAPOLEON DYNAMITE (H, PG) Depressing comedy about a super nerd (Jon Heder) who is happy to be left alone. Evans

OPEN WATER (HHH, R) The story of a couple who go scuba diving and surface to discover that a curious thing has happened: The boat has left without them. Blanchard Ryan and Daniel Travis star, in not so much a thriller as a frighteningly quiet film, really, in which less and less happens as a large, implacable reality begins to form. Ends today at Augusta Village, begins Friday at Masters

PAPARAZZI (PG-13) Mel Gibson produces a tale of a movie star seeking revenge on tabloid photographers. With Cole Hauser and Robin Tunney. Ends today at Masters

RESIDENT EVIL: APOCALYPSE (R) Milla Jovovich returns to kick more mutant-zombie butt. Augusta Exchange, ends today at Evans

SHALL WE DANCE (PG-13) Richard Gere and Jennifer Lopez in a remake of Japanese film that was a cross-cultural charmer. Preview screening, movie set for Oct. 15 release. Evans, 7:20 p.m. Saturday

SHARK TALE (HH, PG) This animated parody inspired by The Godfather has Robert De Niro voicing Don Lino, boss of the coral reef. Will Smith voices Oscar, who works at the Whale Wash, a mob-connected business owned by a puffer fish (Martin Scorsese). When he accidentally becomes a hero, Oscar has to choose between a faithful girlfriend (Rene Zellweger) and a vamp (Angelina Jolie). Augusta Exchange, Big Mo, Aiken and Evans

SHREK 2 (HHH, PG) Shrek and Princess Fiona go to meet her royal parents. Augusta Village, and Masters

SKY CAPTAIN AND THE WORLD OF TOMORROW (PG) Kerry Conran wrote the software that allowed him to shoot Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow, the stars of this 1930s-set science-fiction adventure, against a blue screen, then create the entire "world of tomorrow" inside the computer. Visually, it's a German expressionistlike dream of a comic-book future. Augusta Exchange, Big Mo and Evans, ends today at Aiken

SPIDER-MAN 2 (HHHH, PG-13) Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst bring real poignancy to Peter Parker's troubled love for Mary Jane, and Alfred Molina is superb as Doc Ock, the good scientist who becomes a victim of his own invention. Begins Friday at Masters and Augusta Village

THE BOURNE SUPREMACY (HHH, PG-13) An amnesiac with amazing skills is framed for murder in Berlin and pursues his enemies from India to Italy, Germany and Russia. Begins Friday at Augusta Village

THE COOKOUT (PG-13) A new NBA star juggles an endorsement interview and a barbecue with his wacky family. Augusta Exchange

THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW (HHH, PG-13) Global warming floods Manhattan and then freezes it. Billions die, but the movie's characters survive. Augusta Village

THE FORGOTTEN (PG) Julianne Moore goes the psychological thriller route in this tale of a grieving mother who's told that her dead son never existed. Augusta Exchange, Aiken and Evans

THE NOTEBOOK (HHH, PG-13) Cuts between the same couple at two seasons in their lives. It's a tear-jerker, but well-acted and deeply felt. MASTERS, ENDS TODAY AT AUGUSTA VILLAGE

THE PRINCESS DIARIES: ROYAL ENGAGEMENT (H, G) Anne Hathaway, princess of Genovia, faces a one-month deadline: Get married, or lose her right to the crown. Ends today at Evans

THE VILLAGE (H, PG-13) M. Night Shyamalan strikes out in this turgid and anticlimactic thriller. It's set in a rustic village, whose inhabitants never enter the forest that surrounds them - until an emergency prompts the elder (William Hurt) to send his blind daughter (Bryce Dallas Howard) on a mission to get medicine. The movie has a premise so transparent it would be laughable were the movie not so deadly solemn. With Joaquin Phoenix, Sigourney Weaver and Adrien Brody. Begins Friday at Masters and Augusta Village

WHITE CHICKS (H, PG-13) Marlon and Shawn Wayans disguise themselves to act as bait for kidnappers. Augusta Village

WICKER PARK (HHH, PG-13) A baffling but perversely entertaining emotional thriller. Ends today at Masters

WIMBLEDON (PG-13) While this was filmed partly on the lawns and in the locker rooms of the world's best-known tennis arena, this story of the romance that develops between a low-seeded Brit (Paul Bettany) and an American star (Kirsten Dunst) with a reputation for being diva-difficult is all fiction. Augusta Exchange and Evans

WITHOUT A PADDLE (PG-13) Amiable piffle that benefits from the warmly moronic camaraderie of stars Seth Green, Matthew Lillard and Dax Shepard. Ends today at Augusta Exchange, Aiken and Evans

WOMAN THOU ART LOOSED (R) Kimberly Elise, recently seen opposite Denzel Washington in The Manchurian Candidate, stars as Michelle Jordan, a victim of childhood abuse who becomes a criminal and winds up on death row. The fictional story intersperses graphic scenes of sexual abuse, drug use and domestic violence with Bishop T.D. Jakes preaching a Los Angeles revival and ministering to the condemned prisoner. Augusta Exchange.