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Capsules by Michael Sragow or Chris Kaltenbach, unless noted. Full reviews are at

Be Kind Rewind -- In this combination of Dada farce and daddy comedy, Jack Black and Mos Def carve out a cult of no-budget, handmade short films to save the small business - and ultimately the neighborhood - of their father figure (Danny Glover), the owner of the Be Kind Rewind video store. This movie doesn't have a mean bone in its body; the problem is, it doesn't have any bone in its body. It's a gross combination of hipness and sentimentality. (M.S.) PG-13 101 minutes C-


City of Men -- A pair of young Brazilian men struggle to walk the straight and narrow even though drug-dealing gangs warp their environment - the hivelike hillside slums, or favelas, of contemporary Rio de Janeiro. The matter-of-factness of the carnage gets to you, but doesnt stay with you; there isn't enough heft to the protagonists. This movie tries to flesh out the victims of harsh favela life, but too often they register as scurrying figures in a human ant farm. (M.S.) R 110 minutes C+

Definitely, Maybe -- imagines a world where happy endings are de rigueur, but getting there is no picnic. As romantic comedies go, that may not qualify as a revelation, but in the hands of writer-director Adam Brooks and his uniformly charming cast - including Ryan Reynolds as the poor guy whose heart belongs to either Elizabeth Banks, Isla Fisher or Rachel Weisz - it's a welcome wrinkle in a genre that rarely ventures beyond the predictable. Abigail Breslin is the young girl transfixed by her father's tale and anxious to find out which of based-on-fact girlfriends he's telling her about is her mother. (C.K.) PG-13 111 minutes B


Fool's Gold -- An undersea-treasure hunter and his ex-wife renew their love connection over the prospective bounty from a sunken Spanish fleet. Formulaic and cliched, but Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson have a winning chemistry. (C.K.) PG-13 110 minutes B-

4 Months, 3 Weeks, Two Days -- The exploitation of a strong woman by a needy one proves as tense a subject as the tyranny of a communist dictatorship in this engrossing story of a thoughtless college girl's illegal abortion in 1987 Romania. The movie fills us with high anxiety and terror, and Anamaria Marinca, as the pregnant girl's sturdy friend, is the rarest kind of heartbreaker. You never see her ask for the audience's sympathy. She creates a character on the run - and allows the film to zip down intriguing side roads in a largely straightaway narrative. (M.S.) Unrated 113 minutes A

The Other Boleyn Girl -- Anne Boleyn (Natalie Portman) takes the place of her sister Mary (Scarlett Johansson) as the lover of King Henry VIII (Eric Bana) - and learns that power and position are no substitutes for true devotion and affection. Too bad this movie stumbles while attempting the old movie two-step of setting up a morality tale, then exploiting it for heat and titillation. (M.S.) PG-13 114 minutes C-

Semi-Pro -- Will Ferrell is daffy Jackie Moon, owner-player-coach of the Flint Tropics (the worst team in the American Basketball Association), and the one-of-a-kind dreamer who took it literally when someone said "Dream on." As Moon attempts to win his team a place in the NBA, the action is so shabbily staged, shot and edited that it barely comes together. But hilarious people keep turning up, and Ferrell creates the kind of put-on comedy that invites everybody in. (M.S.) R 90 minutes B

The Spiderwick Chronicles -- With character names like Hogsqueal, Mulgarath and Thimbletack, it's got to be derivative. So it's not altogether surprising that Mark Waters' adaptation of The Spiderwick Chronicles feels slightly not-so-fresh. Based on the children's fantasy series by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black, it's the story of what happens to a trio of kids in trouble when their newly single mom moves them from New York to a crumbling, fairy-infested Victorian mansion in the country - where they soon run afoul of the local ogre. (From wire reports) PG 90 minutes B+

Step Up 2 the Streets -- scores some serious points for its dance moves but does a lousy job of remembering there's a lot more to this big old world than moving your feet. A sequel to 2006's surprise shot-in-Baltimore hit Step Up, it posits a world (set and filmed again in Charm City) where the only thing of any importance is winning the local underground dance competition - in this case, an on-the-sly showdown between warring crews dubbed The Streets. Smoldering newcomer Briana Evigan is underserved by the flimsiest and most cliched of story lines. The result is undeniably energetic and viscerally satisfying, but emotionally hollow. (C.K.) PG-13 97 minutes C+

Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, -- starring Martin Lawrence and Mo'Nique, sets out to prove that you can go home again, but the lesson apparently is that it's going to be painful for everyone involved (audiences included). The film, by writer-director Malcolm D. Lee, is a near continuous assault of cliches. It attempts to wring unearned sentiment from the inevitable, awkwardly staged family rapprochement. But why does it have to take Roscoe almost two hours to come to realize what is obvious to the audience in the first 10 minutes? (Los Angeles Times) PG-13 114 minutes C