Bandslam: (Summit Entertainment) A new kid in town assembles a fledgling rock band to play in a huge battle of the bands competition. With Gaelan Connell and Vanessa Hudgens.
The Cove : (Roadside Attractions) In this real-life expose, activists and documentary-makers uncover the merciless slaughter of dolphins outside a Japanese town.
District 9: (TriStar) A government agent comes to the aid of an alien race forced to live in slumlike conditions on Earth.
The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard: (Paramount Pictures) A smooth-talking used-car liquidator steps in to save a flailing dealership and turn the Fourth of July sale into a major windfall. With Jeremy Piven.
In the Loop : (IFC Films) The American president and the British prime minister scheme to start a war. With James Gandolfini and Gina McKee.
Ponyo : (Walt Disney Pictures) A young boy befriends a goldfish princess who longs to become human.
Spread: (Anchor Bay) A cocky womanizer is torn between his cougar meal ticket and the young waitress of his dreams. With Ashton Kutcher and Anne Heche.
Release dates are subject to change.
Seraphine **** (4 stars)
Martin Provost's biopic of Seraphine Louis (Yolande Moreau), cleaning-woman and self-taught painter, ranks with Robert Altman's "Vincent and Theo" as one of the best portraits of an artist ever committed to celluloid. Its depiction of faith, madness and idiosyncrasy clears all the triviality out of your head and stings your heart.
- Michael Sragow