A great treachery is revealed, a great light is snuffed out and the final quest is set up in “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince,” an emotional and involving installment in the hit-or-miss “Harry” movie series.
The twentysomething rom-com “(500) Days of Summer” has been a hit on the festival circuit and it’s easy to see why. Parroting the hipster yet accessible feel-good vibe of “Juno” and “Garden State,” this sweetly engaging trifle goes down as easy as a cold lemonade on a hot afternoon. That it’s a compendium of indie-gone-mainstream ideas, and not particularly believable, probably isn’t going to hurt it with its target audience.
“Bandslam,” Summit Entertainment’s “High School Musical”/“Camp Rock” clone, is a movie about music and high school and guilt and fitting in. It’s surprisingly not awful for something this over-familiar.
If only Quentin Tarantino the director werenât so completely in love with Q.T. the writer, âInglourious Basterdsâ might have been a great movie rather than just a good movie with moments of greatness. Scenes of his wildly revisionist World War II saga have a wonderfully palpable tension, but then he undermines them by allowing them to go on too long.
Robert Rodriguez channels his inner 11-year-old with âShorts,â a childish but fun wish fulfillment-fantasy for kids thatâs equal parts boogers, big messages and product placement. In Black Falls, everybody works on the Black Box, an all-in-one phone gadget. Mrs. (Leslie Mann) and Mr. (Jon Cryer) Thompson are constantly on their Black Boxes, miscommunicating. They barely notice that son Toby âToeâ Thompson (Jimmy Bennett) is friendless, the object of bullying.
Science-fiction movies are thinking less and feeling more. A genre once heavy with futuristic hardware and mind-blowing themes has discovered its gentler, more sensitive side. Two movies now playing neatly display this evolution.
Converting Pixar’s history-changing cartoons “Toy Story” and “Toy Story 2” into 3D and pairing them, in theaters, for a double feature reminds us how very good these movies were and remain, how great the computer animation and how witty and sentimental the scripts.