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Movie Reviews!

Title Review
A Prairie Home Companion Wait for cable
An Inconvenient Truth Must see!/Conservatives - Wait for cable
The Break-Up See at a matinee
Cars Must see!
The DaVinci Code See at a matinee
The Devil Wears Prada Must see!
The Lake House Worth the cost of admission
Mission Impossible III Worth the cost of admission
Nacho Libre Worth the cost of admission
Over the Hedge Must see!
Superman See at a matinee
X-Men: The Last Stand Wait for cable

A Prairie Home Companion
Starring: Garrison Keillor, Kevin Kline, Meryl Streep and Lily Tomlin
Review: Wait for cable

As a long time fan of the "Prairie Home Companion" radio show, I was looking forward to seeing the movie version. I figured, how can filming an episode possibly do any harm? But unfortunately, they replaced the very talented radio show cast with movie stars, who simply aren't as good. Sure, it has a few moments, but all and all, don't pay to see this movie. Wait for cable.

An Inconvenient Truth
Starring: Al Gore
Review: Liberals - Must see! Conservatives - Wait for cable

An Inconvenient Truth is based on the Global Warming lectures that Al Gore has given a thousand times. And if they had kept to the lecture, this would be a must see movies for everyone! Unfortunately, they didn't leave well enough alone, and filled in a third of the movie with material that's supposed to help us understand who Al Gore is as a man. Instead, that third is dedicated to how Gore was cheated out of the 2000 election. The science is interesting and sound, but most Republicans won't be able to get past the sour grapes.

The Break-Up
Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Vince Vaughn, Jon Favreau
Review: See at a matinee

The Break-up is a new take on the classic romantic comedy formula. Jennifer Aniston plays Brooke, a woman who feels that her boyfriend, Gary (Vaughn) takes her for granted. Finally, she can't take it any longer and breaks up with him. The movie deserves props for its realistic depiction of a relationship. In once scene, Brooke just replies, "I just don't have anything left in me", a feeling we've all had when a romance ends. Still, the movie doesn't hit on all cylinders. Considering all the friends I have that love this movie, I'm upgrading it from "Wait for cable" to "See at a matinee"

Starring the voices of: Owen Wilson, Bonnie Hunt, Paul Newman
Review: Must see!

Pixar is six-for-six! Cars is the story of Lightning McQueen, (Owen Wilson) a self absorbed race car who only cares about himself. On his way to the big race, McQueen finds himself trapped in Radiator Springs, a forgotten town along Route 66. Will he learn to think of others instead of himself? In a way, this movie is an animated equivalent of Doc Hollywood. More importantly, it's a good remake of Doc Hollywood! Larry the Cable guy is a pleasant surprise as "Tow Mater", the happy tow truck, and the movie is full of inspired cameos from a myriad of stars. Pixar is incredibly talented at making movies that both children and adults will enjoy, and Cars is no exception. This movie is a must see!

The DaVinci Code
Starring: Tom Hanks, Audrey Tautou, Ian McKellen, Paul Bettany
Review: See at a matinee
The DaVinci code is based on the international best seller of the same name, and follows the adventures of a man accused of a crime he didn't commit. The only solution is for our hero to solve one of the great mysteries of all time, which will miraculously prove his innocence. Like the millions of readers who read the novel, I enjoyed the book and found it to be an enjoyable read. But books are very different from movies. For instance, a book is usually read over a period of days or weeks, so all the puzzles are spaced out. It's not until you see them crammed together in a two hour movie that you realize that these characters have to be the smartest people on Earth, since they can solve all the hardest mysteries in just minutes. The movie is well acted and filmed, but not quite worth paying full price for.

The Devil Wears Prada
Starring: Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Stanley Tucci, Adrian Grenier
Review: Must see!
The Devil Wears Prada is about an aspiring writer who is so desperate for work, she takes a job as the second administrative assistant to the editor of a "Vogue" like magazine. Will she sell her soul to get ahead? This movie was truly a pleasant surprise! Meryl Streep is amazing as the self absorbed editor, and Stanley Tucci steals the movie as her able lieutenant. Have I mentioned my huge crush on Anne Hathaway? Even Adrian Grenier, most famous for his role as the star of the HBO series "Entourage" does an excellent job her boyfriend. It's a glimpse into the world of fashion without taking it too seriously or mocking it too much. Well acted, well written, and enjoyable from beginning to finish.

The Lake House
Starring: Sandra Bullock, Keanu Reeves
Review: Worth the cost of admission
The Lake House is about how two people share one residence, but in different points in time. Through some unexplained magic, when one writes in the year 2004, the other gets it in 2006, and vice-versa. At first it's just a curiosity, but as they continue their correspondence they become closer and closer. They share an intimacy that rarely occurs outside of writing, kind of like the "Griffin and Sabine" books. I saw the minor twist about an hour early, and it wraps up predictably, but that makes it no less enjoyable. Not a must see, but if you pay full price, you still won't be disappointed.

Mission Impossible III
Starring: Tom Cruise, Phillip Seymour Hoffman
Review: Worth the cost of admission
Mission Impossible III is probably the best of the three Mission Impossible movies. The first movie was a convoluted mess and the second was a classic, John Woo, "Style over substance" movie. The third installment has a couple of things going for it that were missing from its predecessors. First, its directed by J.J. Abrahams of "Alias "fame, who apparently is a better action movie director than either Brian De Palma or John Woo. Secondly, it stars Philip Seymour Hoffman who is amazing as the antagonist. Hoffman is most noted for his quirky, independent roles like "Capote", and he's far more actor than the part required. Not a "must see" movie, but its definitely worth the price.

Nacho Libre
Starring: Jack Black
Review: Worth the cost of admission
The story of a monk at an orphanage, who aspires to be a famous wrestler. It would be pointless to spell out the plot, but this is one remarkably silly film, which is truly enjoyable. Forgetable enough to not be worth of the "Must see!" rating, but worth seeing none the less.

Over the Hedge
Starring the voices of: Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Steve Carell
Review: Must see!
Over the Hedge is about a bunch of forest animals, which awake from their hibernation to find that their woodland home has been oven taken by suburbia. This movie is remarkably well cast, with Bruce Willis as RJ the raccoon, and Gary Shandling as Verne the turtle. Although I agree with my friend Tim that Michael J. Fox would have been perfect as the scheming raccoon. In any case, it's a thoroughly enjoyable film, with scene stealing performances by Steve Carell as Hammy the hyperactive squirrel. Disney clearly has competition from our friends at Dreamworks Animation!

Starring: Brandon Routh, Kate Bosworth, Kevin Spacey
Review: See at a matinee
SPOILERS! When I first reviewed this movie, I gave it a rating of "Must skip", mainly because I slept through it. Hey, it was a 10:30 show! Apparently I only woke up during the really bad parts. Fortunately, I gave the movie a second chance, and although it's not worth the full $10, it is worth seeing at a matinee. The movie is supposed to happen after Superman II, where Superman and Lois Lane get it on, but he makes her forget all about it. This is the first of the two major plot holes. If you found out that you gave birth to Superman's son and couldn't remember having sex with him, wouldn't you be a bit upset? The other major plot hole involves Lex Luthor's giant island of Kryptonite. Apparently it weakens Superman so much, Lex Luther is able to completely kick his butt! But not enough that it keeps him from being able to lift a huge yacht or even an entire island! Can Superman pick up an entire island under normal circumstances? And even if he can, this is an island made of Kryptonite for God's sake! Brandon Routh is spooky in his impression of Christopher Reeve, and this may be reason enough to see it. Just don't pay full price.

X-Men: The Last Stand
Starring: Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Patrick Stewart, Famke Janssen
Review: Wait for cable
X-Men: The Last Stand is the third, and hopefully final, installment in the X-Men trilogy. Patrick Stewart reprises his role as Professor Charles Xavier, the leader of the X-Men, and strong believer that people and mutants can coexist peacefully. Ian McKellen also reprises his role as Magneto, who completely steals the show. The basic premise is that the U.S. government has discovered a way to turn mutants back into normal people, and finally ends up declaring war on the mutants. By the end of the movie you have to wonder why the X-Men defend the humans who are constantly mistrusting and plotting against them. It's so off putting, you find yourself cheering for Magneto and hoping that he succeeds.