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May 2011
The Beaver Movingly Portrays Mental Illness

“People love a train wreck unless it’s happening to them.” Perhaps that line from The Beaver really connected with Mel Gibson.

 
Opus Dei Founder’s Story Told in Dragons

There Be Dragons is based on a true story. It’s refreshing to see a profile of someone like St. Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer, whose love for God is deep and where God is reverenced rather than reviled.

April 2011
Red Riding Hood Returns in Hoodwinked Too!

After the recent success of Rio, filmmakers are betting there’s enough demand for Hoodwinked Too! to join the fun.

 
Should You Plan to Attend This Prom?

Oh, the joy/trauma of that high school rite of passage: Prom. It’s as close to Cinderella’s ball as most of us will ever get.

 
Fast Five Starts, Ends with a Bang

If it’s big, dumb and loud, it must be a summer movie. But if it’s the fifth film in a series, like Fast Five, chances are it won’t be enjoyably big, dumb and loud.

 
Madea’s Welcome Worn Out in Big Happy Family

It seems Madea’s run out of new material for her repertoire as many of the punch lines are recycled from previous efforts.

 
Felines Rule in Disneynature's African Cats

Just in time for Earth Day and filmed entirely in the wild in the Masai Mara in Kenya, Disneynature's African Cats introduces us to families of cheetahs, lions and maybe a crocodile or two.

 
Water for Elephants Has Old-Fashioned Charm

Water for Elephants not only has an old-fashioned feel, but also shows Robert Pattinson can play a character who’s not dead and brooding.

 
Nonstop Flight of Fun, Friendship in Rio

Making the most of today’s technology and filled with offbeat humor, Rio is an enjoyable, thrill-a-minute adventure.

 
Scream Reboot Specializes in Recycled Story

“One generation’s tragedy is the next one’s joke,” says a law officer in Scream 4, the latest in the Wes Craven-directed franchise. But the joke’s on the viewers.

April 2011
Soul Surfer Rides Wave of Faith, Resilience

Soul Surfer inspires in its depiction of overcoming setbacks and the role faith plays for surfer Bethany Hamilton.

 
Add Arthur to the List of Needless Remakes

This time around the titular role is played by none other than Russell Brand, who’s really more of an acquired taste than the lovable everyman that Dudley Moore ever was.

 
Hanna’s Fairy Tale is Violent and Grimm

Saoirse Ronan portrays a young girl in training to be the perfect assassin, honing her skills in order to kill one woman.

 
Love Takes Center Stage in Born to Be Wild

Baby animals are nothing short of pure adorableness—something the documentary filmmakers definitely use to full crowd-pleasing effect in Born to Be Wild.

 
The 5th Quarter Fumbles Attempt to Inspire

This could have been a touching tribute. Instead, The 5th Quarter is like one of those “issue of the week” TV movies.

 
Clever Premise Dumbed Down in Source Code

Complex layers and multiple realities pose tough ethical questions in Source Code, but its clever premise is dumbed down.

 
Colorful Hop Exceeds Low Expectations

What Hop lacks in originality it makes up for in high energy, bright and colorful imagery and a lively and talented cast led by James Marsden.

March 2011
Wimpy Kid Sequel Suffers from Stunted Growth

Like the transitional adolescent phase the story depicts, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules, based on the book series by Jeff Kinney, is a bit awkward and unsettled.

 
Of Gods and Men a Stirring Profession of Faith

With war breaking out around them, a small band of monks in 1990s Algeria have to decide whether to stay or flee—a question that takes up most of this movie which is based on a true story.

 
Limitless Doesn't Break the Mold

Part anti-drug message movie, part paranoid thriller and part star vehicle, Limitless is only partly enjoyable.

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