Movie News & Reviews

What's new in entertainment

A look at what's new in movies, books, music, television, video games and DVDs for the weekend.

MOVIES:

"28 WEEKS LATER"

This sequel to "28 Days Later" takes place six months after the first film, after a fast-spreading disease annihilated the population of Great Britain by turning people into crazed killers. As the U.S. Army leads an effort to rebuild the country, refugees return to find that the disease isn't gone at all - in fact, it's deadlier than ever. Starring Robert Carlyle, Jeremy Renner, Harold Perrineau, Catherine McCormack and Mackintosh Muggleton. Directed by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo. Released by Fox Searchlight Pictures. Rated R.

Official movie site

What the critics say:

"'28 Weeks Later' excels at creating a keen, creepy sense of a civilization stopped dead in its tracks."

-Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly

"A ferociously entertaining thriller with sympathetic characters, stunning set pieces and pulsating excitement."

-Ray Bennett, The Hollywood Reporter

"DELTA FARCE"

A trio of sportsmen (comedians Bill Engvall, DJ Qualls and Larry the Cable Guy) on a weekend jaunt are mistaken for Army reservists and shipped off to Iraq. Before they can reach the war zone they're carelessly dumped into Mexico, but being in the wrong place won't stop them from trying to save a village from a local warlord. With Marisol Nichols, Danny Trejo and Keith David. Directed by CB Harding. Released by Lions Gate Films. Rated PG-13.

Official movie site

What the critics say:

This film was not available for review.

"THE EX"

A guy (Zach Braff of TV's "Scrubs") loses his job and is forced to move with his pregnant wife from New York to Ohio. Things get worse when he takes a job at his father-in-law's ad agency and one of his co-workers turns out to be his wife's ex-boyfriend (Jason Bateman), a paraplegic who's still pining for her. With Amanda Peet, Charles Grodin, Mia Farrow, Paul Rudd, Amy Adams, Donal Logue, Fred Armisen and Amy Poehler. Directed by Jesse Peretz. Released by MGM. Rated PG-13.

Official movie site

What the critics say:

"'The Ex' not only surprises in the consistency and effectiveness of its dark wit, but, more importantly, lets Jason Bateman do most of the comedic heavy lifting."

-Jason Ferguson, Orlando Weekly

"None of the movie's laughs can top what auds have come to expect from any given episode of their favorite workplace sitcom."

-Peter Debruge, Variety

"GEORGIA RULE"

After crashing mom's car, a rebellious teen (Lindsay Lohan) is dragged to Idaho to live with her strict grandmother (Jane Fonda), who patiently teaches the girl about structure, discipline and self-respect. With Felicity Huffman, Dermot Mulroney and Cary Elwes. Directed by Garry Marshall. Released by Universal Pictures. Rated R.

Official movie site

What the critics say:

"There’s little to keep the film from being more than a long series of emotional non sequiturs."

-John Anderson, Variety

"With 'Georgia Rule,' Lindsay Lohan has made her 'Gigli.'"

-Christy Lemire, The Associated Press

OPENING IN LIMITED RELEASE (check local listings):

"THE HIP HOP PROJECT"

A once-homeless teenager named Kazi is the subject of this documentary about music and self expression. Kazi challenged a group of New York teens to write about their own experiences and transform the words into hip hop music, an effort that eventually resulted in a collaborative album, the proceeds of which are used to help youth organizations. Featuring Doug E. Fresh, Russell Simmons and Bruce Willis. Directed by Matt Ruskin and Scott K. Rosenberg. Released by ThinkFilm. Rated Official movie site

What the critics say:

"A beat-driven, inspirational organism that develops and blossoms along with its subjects."

-John Anderson, Variety

"There's an inspirational story lurking within The Hip Hop Project, but directors Matt Ruskin and Scott K. Rosenberg can't quite seem to bring it out."

-Nick Schager, Slant Magazine

"THE SALON"

A comedy about a woman (Viveca A. Fox) who fights city hall to keep her beauty salon from being turned into a parking lot. Complicating matters is the city's lawyer, an eligible bachelor who falls for her and decides to help her save her beloved shop. With Terrence Howard, Kym Whitley, Brooke burns, Darrin Dewitt Henson and Greg Germann. Directed by Mark Brown. Released by 20th Century Fox. Rated PG-13.

Official movie site

What the critics say:

"This girl-talk comedy is a cut below its predecessors."

-Duane Byrge, The Hollywood Reporter

"Where's Al Sharpton's decency parade when you need it?"

-Julia Wallace, The Village Voice

"SHOW BUSINESS"

This documentary follows four Broadway shows from rehearsals all the way to opening night, where the productions meet very different receptions from critics and the public. Featuring Kristin Chenoweth, Alan Cumming, Boy George, Idina Menzel and Rosie O'Donnell as themselves. Directed by Dori Berinstein. Released by Regent Releasing. Rated PG.

Official movie site

What the critics say:

"Simply the best documentary ever made about Broadway."

-David Noh, Film Journal International





VIDEO:

"Becket"

Peter O'Toole and Richard Burton star in this 196x drama about the friendship between King Richard II (O'Toole) and Thomas a Becket (Burton), whom the king appointed Archbishop of Canterbury. The two men soon find themselves at odd over the separation of church and state, a conflict that ends in tragedy. Directed by Peter Glenville. Released by MPI Home Video. Not rated. Available May 16.

"The Fountain"

Darren Aronofsky ("Requiem for a Dream") directed this science-fiction fable set in three different time periods - 16th-century Latin America during the Spanish conquest, 21st-century America and outer space 500 years in the future. Starring Hugh Jackman, Rachel Weisz and Ellen Burstyn. Released by Warner Home Video. Rated R. Available May 16.

"M*A*S*H: Goodbye, Farewell and Amen"

The emotional, bittersweet last episode of the long-running series about the Korean War sees the doctors and nurses of the 4077th finally being sent home. Broadcast in 1983, the two-and-a-half hour episode became the most widely viewed television program of all time. Released by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. Not rated. Available May 16.

"Pan's Labyrinth"

Set in the fascist Spain of 1944, "Pan's Labyrinth" is a mix of history, fairy tale and horror film about a lonely little girl who creates a rich fantasy world to escape life with her brutal stepfather, an army captain who's trying to wipe out the last resistance fighters from the civil war. Among the girl's new acquaintances in her new home is a fawn, a creature that’s both consoling and threatening. Starring Ivana Baquero, Doug Jones, Sergi López, Ariadna Gil and Maribel Verdú. Directed by Guillermo Del Toro ("Hellboy," "The Devil's Backbone"). Released by New Line Home Video. Rated R. Available May 16.

"Seraphim Falls"

Spurred by a vengeful rage, a former Confederate colonel (Liam Neeson) pursues a wanted man (Pierce Brosnan) through the American wilderness after the Civil War. The colonel keeps his motives a secret from his men, even though they keep dying at the hands of their elusive quarry. With Angelica Huston, Michael Wincott and Ed Lauter. Directed by David Von Ancken. Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Rated R. Available May 16.

"Stomp the Yard"

A young man from L.A. learns about brotherhood and cooperation when he joins a fraternity at a predominantly African-American college. Foremost among the bonding activities is stepping, the elaborate form of group dancing that brings out the competitive spirit in each fraternity. Starring Chris Brown, April Clark, Darrin Henson, Robin Thicke and Jermaine Williams. Directed by Sylvain White. Released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Rated PG-13. Available May 16.

"Tex Avery's Droopy: The Complete Theatrical Collection":

A collection of cartoons directed by animation genius Avery and starring the depressed, monotone hound named Droopy. Includes such classics as "Dixieland Droopy," "Out-Foxed" and "Northwest Hounded Police." Released by Warner Home Video. Not rated. Available May 16.





VIDEO GAMES:

"Etrian Odyssey"

A fantasy role-playing game in which players guide characters into a mysterious labyrinth that has suddenly appeared near a small village, and those who wander inside can find either riches or death. Published by Atlus USA for Nintendo DS. Rated T. Available May 15.

"FreeStyle Street Basketball"

This game has players compete on neighborhood courts, including New York's the Cage and Rucker Park. Features customizable fashions, tattoos and other accessories. Published by Vivendi Games for PC. Rated E. Available May 15.

"MLB 07: The Show"

The newest edition of this baseball game allows offensive and defensive play from different perspectives and special features such as a live MLB ticker, which gives the scores of real-life games as they're being played. Published by Sony Computer Entertainment for PlayStation 3 (title already available for PlayStation2 and PSP. Rated E. Available May 15.

"Penumbra: Overture"

An immersive horror/action game that has players follow a mysterious letter to remote Greenland, where a metal hatch leads to a nightmarish journey underground. Published by Got Game Entertainment for PC. Rated M. Available May 15.

"Resident Evil 4"

This latest chapter in the horror action game has Leon Kennedy, the hero from "Resident Evil 2," facing more zombies and newer, even more grotesque enemies. Published by Ubi Soft for PC (title already available for GameCube and PlayStation 2). Rated M. Available May 15.

"Shrek The Third"

This adventure game based on the upcoming movie allows players to guide several different characters on a quest through the film's environments and through new places special to the game. Includes 20 different levels. Published by Activision for Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2 and PSP. Rated E-10+. Available May 15.





MUSIC:

The Horrors, "Strange House": The British garage rock band with the dark morbid streak makes their album debut. Includes the cult hit single "Sheena is a Parasite." Released by Stolen Transmission. In stores May 15.

Linkin Park, "Minutes to Midnight": The popular alt-rock band shows hip-hop and classic rock influences on their much-delayed third album. Released by Warner Bros./Wea. In stores May 15.

Pink Martini, "Hey Eugene!" The Portland-based ensemble mixes Japanese, Cuban and decidedly American sounds into a distinctive jazz/cabaret sound. Released by Heinz Records. In stores May 15.

Joe Strummer, "The Future Is Unwritten": This soundtrack to the new film about the life of Clash frontman Joe Strummer features a diverse array of artists including Eddie Cochran, Nina Simone, Woody Guthrie and, of course, the Clash. Released by Sony. In stores May 15.

Wilco, "Sky Blue Sky": Guitarist Nels Cline and multi-instrumentalist Pat Sansone, members of Wilco's touring band, make their album debut with the band's sixth studio disc. Released by Nonesuch. In stores May 15.

Gretchen Wilson, "One of the Boys": Wilson adopts more of a honky-tonk sound to accompany her classic rock and country style. Released by Sony. In stores May 15.

Rufus Wainwright, "Release the Stars": Wainwright confronts his personal demons on his fifth album that boasts an unusual array of guests, including actress Sian Phillips. Released by Geffen. In stores May 15.





TV:

All times are EST/PST.

Sunday, May 13

"7th Heaven": The wholesome family drama really is ending for good this time. Maybe. 8 p.m., CW.

"The Simpsons": Santa's Little Helper becomes a hero and Rudy Giuliani and Stephen Hawking provide guest voices. 8 p.m., Fox.

"Survivor: Fiji": The winner is announced. 8 p.m., CBS.

"The Sopranos": With only four episodes left, tensions are getting worse between the Jersey crew and the guys in New York. 9 p.m., HBO.

Monday, May 14

"Everybody Hates Chris": It's the end of the school year, and Chris is thinking revenge. 8 p.m., CW.

"How I Met Your Mother": Ted and Robin reveal a secret in the season finale. 8 p.m., CBS.

Tuesday, May 15

"Gilmore Girls": Rory (Alexis Bledel) has her dream job and a graduation party thrown in her honor in the series finale. 8 p.m., CW.

"The 42nd Academy of Country Music Awards": It's another one of those country music awards shows. Why? 8 p.m., CBS.

Wednesday, May 16

"Bones": Brennan's father (Ryan O'Neal) resurfaces with information about her past in the season finale. 8 p.m., Fox.

Thursday, May 17

"Smallville": Lana's got some upsetting news for Lex in the season finale. 8 p.m., CW.

"The Office": There's an opening at the head office, and Jim, Michael and Karen all want it. 8:30 p.m., NBC.

"Grey's Anatomy": Find out if Addison bolts for a spin-off series in the season finale. 9 p.m., ABC.





BOOKS:

John Baldwin and Ron Powers, "Last Flag Down: The Epic Journey of the Last Confederate Warship": the true story of the Shenandoah, a Confederate warship that hunted Union vessels across the globe even after the Civil War had ended. Published by Crown. In stores May 15.

Ron Carlson, "Five Skies": Three men with troubled past find solace in one another as they labor on a construction project in the Rocky Mountains in acclaimed author Carlson's first novel in 30 years. Published by Penguin Group. In stores May 15.

Paula Coelho, "Witch of Portobello": Coelho's new novel has several characters recount the life of Athena, a Romanian-born gypsy who attained a god-like status before her death. Published by HarperCollins. In stores May 15.

Don DeLillo, "Falling Man": A man survives the Sept. 11 attack on the World Trade Center and decides to re-connect with his ex-wife and son in this new novel from the author of "Libra" and "Underworld." Published by Scribner. In stores May 15.

Robert Kurson, "Crashing Through: A Story of Risk, Adventure, and the Man Who Dared to See": The true story of Mike May, an accomplished man who underwent an operation to restore the sight he had lost at age 3 and discovered that adjusting to a world of images was unimaginably difficult. Published by Random House. In stores May 15.

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