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Video / DVD

New releases

On the shleves soon

By Times Staff
Published July 28, 2005


THE UPSIDE OF ANGER

DIRECTOR: Mike Binder

CAST: Joan Allen, Kevin Costner, Erika Christensen, Evan Rachel Wood, Keri Russell, Alicia Witt, Mike Binder

SYNOPSIS: A deserted, alcoholic housewife (Allen) resists a fresh start with her equally drunk neighbor (Costner), a former baseball pro. Her daughters (Witt, Christensen, Wood, Russell) have a tough time agreeing to her terms of endearment.

WHAT WE SAID: St. Petersburg Times film critic Steve Persall gave the movie a B+. It is, he wrote, "a meandering family drama that Allen holds together with the laser focus of her performance. She isn't the only good thing about Mike Binder's film, but without Allen, nothing else would matter. . . . The film's best surprise is Costner's portrayal of Denny, the kind of work he can do when his ego doesn't get in the way. He never overplays the beer buzz, or seeks to shine Denny's emotional armor. It's his best performance in a decade, one that should silence his career snipers - like me - for a while."

MPAA RATING: R; profanity, sexual situations, brief drug abuse, brief fantasy violence

RUNNING TIME: 118 min.

XXX: STATE OF THE UNION

DIRECTOR: Lee Tamahori

CAST: Ice Cube, Willem Dafoe, Samuel L. Jackson, Xzibit, Peter Strauss

SYNOPSIS: An intrepid secret agent (Ice Cube, replacing Vin Diesel) tracks a conspiracy to overthrow the U.S. government.

WHAT WE SAID: Times reviewer Marty Clear gave the movie a D. "You really have to be in love with shaky cameras, frantic editing and extreme closeups of Ice Cube's face to lose yourself in this messy conglomeration of recycled stunts," he wrote. "Ice Cube's performance has a certain amount of appeal - you gotta love such a chubby superhero - and Jackson has a line or two that recall his astounding performance in Pulp Fiction. Rapper Xzibit is raw but suitably intense as the leader of a gang of chop-shop thugs. But if you care about anything other than action and volume, you're likely to find this sequel stultifying."

MPAA RATING: PG-13; intense action violence and some language

RUNNING TIME: 101 min.

KING'S RANSOM

DIRECTOR: Jeff Byrd

CAST: Anthony Anderson, Jay Mohr, Kellita Smith, Loretta Devine, Nicole Ari Parker, Leila Arcieri, Regina Hall, Charles Murphy, Brooke D'Orsay, Donald Faison

SYNOPSIS: A businessman (Anderson) fakes his own kidnapping to protect his fortune from a divorce settlement.

WHAT WE SAID: The Times did not review this film.

MPAA RATING: PG-13; crude and sexual humor and language

RUNNING TIME: 90 min.

STEAMBOY

DIRECTOR: Katsuhiro Otomo

CAST: Voices of Anna Paquin, Alfred Molina, Patrick Stewart

SYNOPSIS: Japanese anime set in the 19th century, when the invention of steam power enables a young inventor to save the world from a dastardly villain.

WHAT WE SAID: The Times did not review this movie.

MPAA RATING: PG-13; action violence

RUNNING TIME: 106 min.

[Last modified July 27, 2005, 09:54:07]


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