It’s getting hot in here



American Pastime

For the record:

12:00 a.m. May 10, 2007 For The Record
Los Angeles Times Tuesday May 08, 2007 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 1 inches; 62 words Type of Material: Correction
‘Summer Sneaks’: Two photographs were improperly credited in the “Summer Sneaks” movie preview in Sunday’s Calendar. A photograph of Dane Cook and Jessica Alba in “Good Luck Chuck” was taken by Sergei Bachlakov, not Rico Torres. A photograph from the movie “Bug,” with Ashley Judd and Harry Connick Jr., was credited to Lionsgate Entertainment; it should have been credited to Anthony Friedkin/Lionsgate.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday May 10, 2007 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 2 inches; 71 words Type of Material: Correction
‘Arctic Tale’: The Paramount Vantage release “Arctic Tale,” opening Aug. 17, was omitted from the Summer Sneaks list in Sunday’s Calendar section. The documentary from National Geographic follows a walrus and a polar bear through their life cycles amid a vanishing icebound world. It is narrated by Queen Latifah and includes music from Cat Stevens, Ben Harper, Aimee Mann and the Shins. It was directed by Adam Ravetch and Sarah Robertson.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Sunday May 13, 2007 Home Edition Sunday Calendar Part E Page 2 Calendar Desk 3 inches; 111 words Type of Material: Correction
Sneaks list: The Paramount Vantage release “Arctic Tale,” opening Aug. 17, was omitted from the Summer Sneaks list in last Sunday’s Calendar. The documentary from National Geographic follows a walrus and a polar bear through their respective life cycles amid a vanishing icebound world. It is narrated by Queen Latifah and directed by Adam Ravetch and Sarah Robertson. Also, two photographs were improperly credited in the list. A photograph of Dane Cook and Jessica Alba in “Good Luck Chuck” was taken by Sergei Bachlakov, not Rico Torres. A photograph from “Bug,” with Ashley Judd and Harry Connick Jr., was credited to Lionsgate Entertainment; it should have been credited to Anthony Friedkin/Lionsgate.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Sunday May 13, 2007 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 1 inches; 66 words Type of Material: Correction
‘Summer Sneaks’: Two photographs were improperly credited in the “Summer Sneaks” movie preview in the May 6 Calendar section. A photograph of Dane Cook and Jessica Alba in “Good Luck Chuck” was taken by Sergei Bachlakov, not Rico Torres. A photograph from the movie “Bug,” with Ashley Judd and Harry Connick Jr., was credited to Lionsgate Entertainment; it should have been credited to Anthony Friedkin/ Lionsgate.
For The Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday May 17, 2007 Home Edition Main News Part A Page 2 National Desk 1 inches; 44 words Type of Material: Correction
‘Arctic Tale’ release: A correction about the documentary “Arctic Tale” that ran May 10 and 13 said the movie would open Aug. 17 in Los Angeles. It opens July 20 in Los Angeles and New York

A Japanese American family, interned at Utah’s Topaz camp during World War II, finds hope, strength and transcendence through the game of baseball. Written and directed by Desmond Nakano. With Gary Cole, Leonardo Nam, Aaron Yoo, Masatoshi Nakamura, Judy Ongg, Sarah Drew and Jon Gries. T&C; Pictures

* So? Line drive


Morgan Spurlock presents this faux documentary about the comic ups and downs of an awkward year in the lives of three schoolteachers. Directed and co-written by Mike Akel. With Troy Schremmer, Janelle Schremmer and Shannon Haragan. Virgil Films and Warrior Poets

* So? Edumacation

Delta Farce

Larry the Cable Guy, Bill Engvall and DJ Qualls play three gun-loving buddies out for a weekend of target practice who are mistaken for real soldiers and sent to Iraq. When they get sent to Mexico instead, they don’t realize they’re not in the Middle East. With Keith David and Danny Trejo. Written by Bear Aderhold and Tom Sullivan. Directed by CB Harding. Lionsgate


* So? Misadventures in militarism

The Ex

An underachiever (“Scrubs’ ” Zach Braff, right, with Jason Bateman) must bring home the bacon when his attorney-wife (Amanda Peet) opts to be a stay-at-home mom in this comedy. With Charles Grodin, Mia Farrow, Donal Logue, Amy Poehler, Amy Adams. Written by David Guion & Michael Handelman. Directed by Jesse Peretz. Weinstein Co. / MGM

* So? Not-so-fast track

Georgia Rule

Mother-daughter dynamics lead to friction among three generations of women (Jane Fonda, Lindsay Lohan and Felicity Huffman). With Dermot Mulroney, Cary Elwes and Garrett Hedlund. Written by Mark Andrus. Directed by Garry Marshall. Universal Pictures

* So? Curiosity factor

The Hip Hop Project

New York City teens are inspired by their mentor, a former homeless youth, to find their voices and tell their stories through the power of music in this documentary by Matt Ruskin and Scott K. Rosenberg. ThinkFilm

* So? Thought-provoking

The Other Conquest

The Spanish conquest of the Aztec empire is seen through the eyes of the vanquished in this reissued 1998 epic from Mexico. With Damian Delgado (“Men With Guns”), Elpidia Carrillo (“Tortilla Heaven”), Jose Carlos Rodriguez and Inaki Aierra. Written and directed by Salvador Carrasco. Union Station Media

* So? Yearnest faith

The Parallel

An assured teenager with a bright future wakes up after a decadent one-night stand with his girlfriend’s best friend to discover that he’s 20 years older and stuck in a dead-end life. Written and directed by Jack Piandaryan. Piandaryan Films

* So? It’s all a bad dream, right?


Aishwarya Rai stars as an abused Indian woman whose retribution earns her a life sentence, but prison proves to be an empowering experience. With Naveen Andrews, Miranda Richardson and Nandita Das. Directed by Jag Mundhra. Written by Carl Austin and Rahila Gupta. Eros Entertainment


* So? A British-Indian “Burning Bed”

The Salon

Vivica A. Fox plays a salon owner being forced out of business by a utility company’s declaration of eminent domain. With Terrence Dashon Howard, Darrin Henson and Monica Calhoun. Written and directed by Mark Brown. Bigger Pictures

* So? Stereotypically stylin’

28 Weeks Later

Six months after the events of “28 Days Later,” England is attempting to recover from the rage virus pandemic, but a family returning to the country unwittingly harbors the virus, ready for another outbreak. With Robert Carlyle, Harold Perrineau and Catherine McCormack. Screenplay by Rowan Joffe and Juan Carlos Fresnadillo & Jesus Olmo and Enrique Lopez Lavigne. Directed by Fresnadillo. Fox Atomic

* So? Relapse

May 18

Brooklyn Rules

Three friends from the old neighborhood find their lifelong bonds tested in this drama set in the mid-1980s. With Mena Suvari and Freddie Prinze Jr., both pictured, Alec Baldwin, Scott Caan, Jerry Ferrara. Directed by Michael Corrente. Screenplay by Terence Winter. City Lights Pictures

* So? Baldwin factor, young wiseguys

Even Money

Three disparate people struggle with gambling addictions in this drama directed by veteran Mark Rydell (“On Golden Pond”). With Kim Basinger, Nick Cannon, Danny DeVito, Kelsey Grammer, Carla Gugino, Ray Liotta, Jay Mohr, Tim Roth and Forest Whitaker. Yari Film Group

* So? Basinger factor, esoteric subject

Fay Grim

Writer-director Hal Hartley returns to the characters from “Henry Fool,” following Fay (Parker Posey), a single mom from Queens who goes to Paris to retrieve her missing husband’s possessions and gets involved in a world of espionage. With Jeff Goldblum, Leo Fitzpatrick and Thomas Jay Ryan. Magnolia Pictures

* So? Typically off-kilter

Hollywood Dreams

Follows the journey of a young woman from a small town in Iowa who arrives in Los Angeles deeply scarred by certain events in her childhood and profoundly obsessed with a lifelong dream of achieving fame and stardom. With Tanna Frederick, Justin Kirk, Karen Black, Melissa Leo. Written and directed by Henry Jaglom. Rainbow Releasing


* So? Jaglom’s inside joke

The Last Time

The career of a star salesman begins to slide after he embarks on an affair with the wife of his protege. Michael Keaton, Brendan Fraser and Amber Valletta star. Written and directed by Michael Caleo. Destination Films

* So? A car salesman?


An Irish street musician romances a Czech immigrant in this tune-filled tale set in Dublin. With Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, pictured. Written and directed by John Carney. Fox Searchlight

* So? Pluck of the Irish

Paris, Je T’aime

The various aspects of Paris are revealed through vignettes by 21 directors. With Fanny Ardant, Juliette Binoche, Steve Buscemi, Sergio Castellitto, Willem Dafoe, Gerard Depardieu, Marianne Faithfull, Ben Gazzara, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Bob Hoskins, Margo Martindale, Emily Mortimer, Nick Nolte, Catalina Sandino Moreno, Natalie Portman, Miranda Richardson, Gena Rowlands, Ludivine Sagnier, Rufus Sewell, Gaspard Ulliel, Elijah Wood. Directors include Olivier Assayas, Depardieu, Gurinder Chadha, Joel & Ethan Coen, Isabel Coixet, Wes Craven, Alfonso Cuaron, Christopher Doyle, Richard LaGravenese, Alexander Payne, Walter Salles & Daniela Thomas, Tom Tykwer and Gus Van Sant. In English and French with English subtitles. First Look Pictures

* So? Love notes to the City of Light

Shrek the Third

The big green ogre (Mike Myers) faces enforced coronation as the next king of Far Far Away, unless his friends Donkey (Eddie Murphy) and Puss in Boots (Antonio Banderas) can find a suitable replacement. With the voices of Cameron Diaz, Rupert Everett, Justin Timberlake, Julie Andrews, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Cheri Oteri, Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Amy Sedaris, John Krasinski and Ian McShane. Screenplay by Jeffrey Price & Peter S. Seaman and J. David Stern, Joe Stillman, David N. Weiss and Jon Zack. Directed by Chris Miller and Raman Hui. Paramount Pictures/DreamWorks Animation

* So? More trouble in Ogre-dom

The Wendell Baker Story

Luke Wilson co-directs and stars in this comedy-drama about an ex-con seeking a fresh start. With Owen Wilson and Eddie Griffin, pictured from left, Eva Mendes, Seymour Cassel and Kris Kristofferson. Directed by Andrew Wilson and Luke Wilson. ThinkFilm

* So? Too cool hand Luke

May 23

The Boss of It All

A high-tech-business owner who has fabricated a non-existent boss so he can be pals with the employees has to hire a stand-in to negotiate the sale of his company in this tale written and directed by Lars von Trier (“Breaking the Waves”). Starring Jens Albinus, Jean-Marc Barr, Casper Christensen, Benedikt Erlingsson, Fridrik Thor Fridriksson. In Danish, Icelandic, English and Russian with English subtitles. IFC First Take


* So? Perils of management

May 25


A man saves a mysterious woman from apparent suicide and is granted a second chance at life. Written and directed by Luc Besson. With Rie Rasmussen and Jamel Debbouze. In French and Spanish with English subtitles. Sony Pictures Classics

* So? A guardian angel

Poison Friends

Parisian university students with literary pretensions fall under the spell of a charismatic fellow student. Starring Dominique Blanc and Malik Zidi, above. Written by Emmanuel Bourdieu and Marcia Roman. Directed by Bourdieu. In French with English subtitles. Strand Releasing

* So? Unconvincingly duplicitous


Ashley Judd, above with Harry Connick Jr., stars as a lonely waitress whose tentative romance with an anxious drifter is shaken by the threat of her recently paroled ex-husband. With Michael Shannon, Lynn Collins and Brian O’Byrne. Tracy Letts adapts his play. Directed by William Friedkin. Lionsgate

* So? Hype-ochondria

Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

Chow Yun-Fat joins the third outing, as Capt. Jack Sparrow’s friends (and an enemy) rush to spring him from a trap. With Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley and Geoffrey Rush. Written by Ted Elliott & Terry Rossio. Directed by Gore Verbinski. Walt Disney Pictures

* So? Quickly, let’s hope


A group of office drones out for a weekend of paintball on the company dime find themselves being hunted and killed by a group of bloodthirsty soldiers. With Danny Dyer, Laura Harris, Tim McInnerny, Toby Stephens. Directed by Christopher Smith. Written by James Moran and Smith. Magnolia Pictures

* So? Work + play + horror = mixed results


Day Night Day Night

A female suicide bomber prepares for her mission -- an attack on Times Square. With Luisa Williams. Written and directed by Julia Loktev. IFC First Take


* So? Less disturbing than it sounds

Punk’s Not Dead

Filmmaker Susan Dynner takes the pulse of this still-thriving rock scene as it heads into its fourth decade. Aberration and Red Rover Films

* So? Wry martini

June 1


Mali’s capital city is the setting for writer-director Abderrahmane Sissako’s political drama focusing on a couple’s stormy relationship as their countrymen take action against global financial institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. With Danny Glover. New Yorker Films

* So? Effectively provocative

Day Watch

The second part of Russian director Timur Bekmambetov’s trilogy that began with “Night Watch” continues the battles between the forces of light and dark in modern-day Moscow. Fox Searchlight

* So? Can’t wait for sunrise

Golden Door

The experience of Italian immigrants is framed as a modern fable in writer-director Emanuele Crialese’s story of a family of Sicilian peasants who must undergo much hardship on their journey to the magical land called America. With Charlotte Gainsbourg. Miramax Films

* So? Ellis Island, unsentimentally


Brother and sister Elisabeth and Andrew Shue star in a film inspired by a real-life incident from their past, in which a 16-year-old fights for the rights of girls everywhere to play competitive soccer. Directed by Davis Guggenheim (“An Inconvenient Truth”). Picturehouse

* So? Goal

Knocked Up

Writer-director Judd Apatow follows up “The 40 Year-Old Virgin” with a cautionary tale of an up-and-coming entertainment reporter (Katherine Heigl) whose one-night stand with an underachiever (Seth Rogen) results in pregnancy and a whole of lot of decisions to make. With Paul Rudd. Universal Pictures


* So? Deniable plausibility

Memories of Tomorrow

A Japanese executive (Ken Watanabe, “Letters From Iwo Jima”) struggles with the early onset of Alzheimer’s -- and its effect on his family and career -- in this imported drama. Directed by Yukihiko Tsutsumi. Based on the novel by Hiroshi Ogiwara. Screenplay by Hakaru Sunamoto & Uiko Miura. In Japanese with English subtitles. Eleven Arts

* So? Emotionally resonant

Mr. Brooks

Upstanding citizen (Kevin Costner, right) has an alter ego (William Hurt, left) who likes killing people. When a neighbor (Dane Cook) attempts to blackmail him, the dual natures of Brooks must work together to avoid capture. Written by Bruce A. Evans and Raynold Gideon. Directed by Evans. MGM

* So? Generation gap


Scientist by day, superhero of the dream world by night, the warrior code-named “Paprika” is out to save the world by entering people’s dreams. Screenplay by Satoshi Kon and Seishi Minakami. Directed by Kon. Sony Pictures Classics

* So? Trippy

Pierrepoint -- The Last Hangman

The workaday world of a British executioner is the subject of this fact-based drama. With Timothy Spall, Juliet Stevenson, Eddie Marsan. Directed by Adrian Shergold. IFC First Take

* So? A question of execution

ShowBusiness: The Road to Broadway

The curtain goes up on the Great White Way’s 2003-04 season as this behind-the-scenes documentary by Dori Berinstein looks at “Wicked,” “Avenue Q,” “Taboo” and “Caroline, or Change.” Featuring Rosie O’Donnell, Alan Cumming, Sarah Jessica Parker, John Lithgow and Cyndi Lauper. Liberation Entertainment/ Regent Releasing

* So? Trailing hits

June 8

Brand Upon the Brain!

Avant-garde Canadian filmmaker Guy Maddin’s latest is a silent extravaganza that combines childhood reminiscence, horror movie expressionism, teen detective serial and Grand Guignol reverie in a tale of a strange family that runs an orphanage out of a lighthouse. Selected screenings will feature live components such as an 11-piece orchestra, a five-person onstage sound effects team and a celebrity narrator. Tartan Films USA


* So? Strange fiction

Crazy Love

Filmmaker Dan Klores’ (“The Boys of 2nd Street Park”) latest documentary revisits a twisted tale of romance -- a woman married the man who threw acid in her face -- that made headlines in the late 1950s. Magnolia Pictures

* So? Poetic justice?


The innocence of youth is lost to the horrors of war in this contemporary fable. Written and directed by Bruno Dumont. In French with English subtitles. International Film Circuit

* So? Open to interpretation

Hostel Part II

More unwitting American tourists get unpleasant things done to them overseas. With Lauren German, Bijou Phillips, left, Roger Bart and Richard Burgi. Written and directed by Eli Roth. Lionsgate

* So? Torturing students might now be passe. Or at least taboo.

Surf’s Up

Go behind the scenes of the world of competitive surfing with a surfing penguin (Shia LaBeouf) who leaves his family in Antarctica to compete in the Big Z Memorial Surf Off. With the voices of Zooey Deschanel, Jeff Bridges, Jon Heder, James Woods and Mario Cantone. Directed by Ash Brannon and Chris Buck. Columbia Pictures

* So? Risk of penguin fatigue

La Vie en Rose

The life and loves of singer Edith Piaf (Marion Cotillard) as she goes from the slums of Paris to the stages of New York City. With Gerard Depardieu. Written by Olivier Dahan and Isabelle Sobelman. Directed by Dahan. Picturehouse

* So? Ne regrettez rien


June 15

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer

Marvel’s superheroic quartet (Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis) contends with an emissary of intergalactic destruction -- and an old foe -- in this effects-laden sequel. With Julian McMahon, Kerry Washington and Andre Braugher. Directed by Tim Story. Screenplay by Don Payne and Mark Frost, story by John Turman and Frost. 20th Century Fox

* So? We confess, we’re game


In the small town of Willard in the seemingly tranquil 1950s, where a corporation called ZomCon has domesticated the raging zombie population, a young boy discovers that all may not be well. Starring Carrie-Anne Moss, Billy Connolly, Tim Blake Nelson, Henry Czerny, Dylan Baker and K’Sun Ray. Written by Robert Chomiak and Andrew Currie, from a story by Dennis Heaton. Directed by Currie. Lionsgate

* So? Social commentary with bite

Raising Flagg

Oscar winner Alan Arkin (“Little Miss Sunshine”) plays yet another cranky senior citizen in this comedy. Written by Nancy Miller, Neal Miller, Dorothy Velasco. Directed by Neal Miller. Cinema Libre Studio

* So? Charming senior moments


A unsung hero of Poland’s Solidarity movement is profiled in this documentary. Directed by Volker Schlondorff. In English, Polish and German with English subtitles. Red Envelope Entertainment/ Laemmle Zeller Films

* So? Roots of a revolution

The Treatment

An anxious schoolteacher finds himself upwardly mobile as he moves between the couch of his crazy psychoanalyst and a socialite widow’s bed. Famke Janssen, Ian Holm, Chris Eigeman, Harris Yulin, Roger Rees, Stephanie March, Stephen Lang and Blair Brown star. Based on the novel by Daniel Menaker, adapted for the screen by Daniel Housman and director Oren Rudavsky. New Yorker Films

* So? Strictly orthodox

12:08 East of Bucharest

A group of eclectic characters convene in the eastern European city to debate whether a revolution happened in their city 16 years previous. Written and directed by Corneliu Porumboiu. In Romanian with English subtitles. Tartan Films USA


* So? Nothing faux about the humor

June 22

Black Sheep

Genetic experiments on a New Zealand sheep farm go terribly awry in this mix of comedy and horror. With Nathan Meister, Peter Feeney, Danielle Mason, Matthew Chamberlain. Written and directed by Jonathan King. IFC First Take

* So? Menacing fleece

Broken English

Unlucky in love, a cynical New Yorker (Parker Posey, pictured) decides to take a chance when she meets a Frenchman (Melvil Poupaud) and goes with him to Paris. With Gena Rowlands and Drea de Matteo. Written and directed by Zoe Cassavetes. Magnolia Pictures

* So? Promise


A successful New York fashion model and a young man are held hostage and tortured in adjoining cells in a mysterious location. Directed by Roland Joffe. With Elisha Cuthbert, Daniel Gillies, Pruitt Taylor Vince. After Dark Films

* So? Billboard backlash

DOA: Dead or Alive

Four female martial artists compete in an underground tournament in this action tale based on the popular video game series. With Devon Aoki, Sarah Carter, Natassia Malthe, Matthew Marsden, Jaime Pressly, Eric Roberts, Holly Valance. Directed by Corey Yuen. Dimension Films

* So? Jiggly kicks

Evan Almighty

In this sequel to “Bruce Almighty,” God (Morgan Freeman) returns to Earth to give orders to an uptight congressman (Steve Carell): build an ark and fill it with two animals of every kind. With Lauren Graham, John Goodman, Wanda Sykes. Written by Steve Oedekerk, story by Oedekerk, Joel Cohen, Alec Sokolow. Directed by Tom Shadyac. Universal Pictures

* So? From God’s mouth to Steve Carell’s ears

Lady Chatterley

An adaptation of “John Thomas and Lady Jane,” the second version of D.H. Lawrence’s last novel, “Lady Chatterley’s Lover,” detailing a noblewoman’s sexual reawakening in the arms of her gameskeeper. Starring Marina Hands, Jean-Louis Coulloc’h, Hippolyte Giradot and Helene Fillieres. Directed by Pascale Ferran. Written by Roger Bohbot and Ferran with dialogue by Pierre Trividic. In French with English subtitles. Kino International


* So? Steamy potential

Now & Later

A down-on-his-luck banker has a passionate, life-altering affair with an illegal immigrant. Written and directed by Philippe Diaz. Cinema Libre Studio

* So? Indispensable

September Dawn

A forbidden romance takes place against the backdrop of a 19th century massacre of 120 men, women and children as their wagon train passes through Utah. With Jon Voight, Terence Stamp and Dean Cain. Directed by Christopher Cain. Written by Christopher Cain and Carole Whang Schutter. Black Diamond Pictures

* So: Controversial complicity

June 27

Ghosts of Cite Soleil

The violence, poverty and despair found in a present-day Haitian slum are surveyed in this documentary. Directed by Asger Leth. In Haitian, English and French with English subtitles. ThinkFilm

* So? As grim as it gets

Live Free or Die Hard

Bruce Willis is back as rogue cop John McClane, trying to stop a hacker from shutting down the U.S. computer infrastructure. Luckily, he’s teamed with Justin Long (the Mac dude from the Apple commercials). With Maggie Q and Timothy Olyphant. Directed by Len Wiseman. 20th Century Fox

* So? Blah blah boom boom crash crash

You Kill Me

A reformed alcoholic hit man encounters the relatives of one of his last jobs when he gets a job at a mortuary. With Ben Kingsley and Tea Leoni. Written by Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely. Directed by John Dahl. IFC Films

* So? An AA meeting has never sounded so intriguing

June 29

Death at a Funeral

A man must deal with his unruly British family as he tries to make his father’s funeral a perfect event. With, from left, Andy Nyman, Rupert Graves, Peter Dinklage, Matthew MacFadyen. Directed by Frank Oz. Sydney Kimmel Entertainment


* So? Frank Oz, finally funny again


A dying woman (Vanessa Redgrave) is compelled to share her life story with her daughters, including the passionate love affair she had when she was a young woman (Claire Danes). With Toni Collette, Patrick Wilson, Hugh Dancy, Natasha Richardson, Glenn Close and Meryl Streep. Screenplay by Susan Minot and Michael Cunningham, based on the book by Minot. Directed by Lajos Koltai. Focus Features

* So? Fab cast

Gypsy Caravan

Director Jasmine Dellal celebrates the music of the Romani culture as five well-known Romani groups tour the U.S. Shot by documentary icon Albert Maysles. Shadow Distribution

* So? Illuminating


A restaurant-residing rat dreams of a life less ordinary in this Pixar animated tale. With Patton Oswalt, Brian Dennehy, Brad Garrett, Janeane Garofalo, Ian Holm. Directed by Brad Bird (“The Incredibles”). Disney /Pixar

* So? A rodent gourmand? Why not?

The Real Dirt on Farmer John

An eccentric farmer goes against the grain of agricultural and societal norms in this documentary. CAVU Pictures

* So? A farmer in a feather boa? We are so there.


Imported tale about a young child prodigy with a remarkable set of talents. With Teo Gheorghiu, Julika Jenkins, Urs Jucker and Bruno Ganz. Directed by Fredi M. Murer. In Swiss, German with English subtitles. Sony Pictures Classics

* So? Engaging

June TBA

Cut Sleeve Boys

Two gay British-born Chinese men take different approaches in facing their mortality and finding Mr. Right -- or, Mr. Right Now, as the case may be. Directed by Ray Yeung. Here! Films/Regent Releasing


* So? Entertaining but orientation-specific


While the artist Gustav Klimt (John Malkovich, above) lies on his death bed, he flashes back over his life and career. With Saffron Burrows, Stephen Dillane. Written and directed by Raoul Ruiz. In English, German and French with English subtitles. Outsider Pictures

* So? Visually evocative

Looking for Cheyenne

Financial and career problems drive a wedge between two women in love with each other, when one of them has to leave Paris and move to the French countryside. With Mila Dekker, Aurelia Petit and Malik Zidi. Written and directed by Valerie Minetto. In French with English subtitles. Here! Films/Regent Releasing

* So? Bitter and sweet, like the real thing

Triad Election/Election

Two gangster thrillers by filmmaker Johnnie To delve into the Byzantine machinations of Hong Kong’s notorious criminal organizations. “Triad” stars Louis Koo as a racketeer trying to go legit, while its 2005 prequel pits an assured gangster (Simon Yam) against the irascible and insidious Big D (Tony Leung Ka-fai. In Mandarin and Chinese with English subtitles. Tartan Films USA

* So? Bracing

July 4

Introducing the Dwights

Brenda Blethyn, above with Khan Chittenden, plays a meddlesome mum in this coming-of-age comedy from Australia. Directed by Cherie Nowlan. Written by Keith Thompson. Warner Independent Pictures

* So? A quirkier sort of “Meet the Parents”

License to Wed

A soon-to-wed couple (John Krasinski and Mandy Moore) want nothing more than to have a traditional wedding at her family church, but the pastor (Robin Williams) insists they pass his marriage-prep course first. Directed by Ken Kwapis. Warner Bros.

* So? Forever holding our tongues

Rescue Dawn

Shot down over Laos during the Vietnam War, an American pilot (Christian Bale) escapes from a Viet Cong prison camp, only to face the harsh realities of the jungle outside. With Steve Zahn, Jeremy Davies. Written and directed by Werner Herzog. MGM


* So? Atypical


Uber-action director Michael Bay resurrects the 1980s-era robotic action figures in a live-action film about a war on Earth between the good-guy Autobots and the villainous Decepticons. With Shia LaBeouf, Tyrese Gibson, Josh Duhamel, Anthony Anderson, Rachael Taylor, Megan Fox, John Turturro and Jon Voight. DreamWorks LLC / Paramount Pictures

* So? Noisy, boys-y

July 6


The tale of Brad (Sam Rockwell) and Abby (Vera Farmiga) Cairn, perfect Manhattan parents in a perfect Manhattan apartment whose perfect life begins to crack after the birth of their second child, Lily, and a dark side of prodigy son Joshua emerges. With Michael McKean. Directed by George Ratliff. Written by Ratliff and David Gilbert. Fox Searchlight

* So? Family friction

Manufactured Landscapes

Photographer Edward Burtynsky, who creates art from civilization’s materials and debris, travels through China chronicling the country’s industrial revolution. Director Jennifer Baichwal. Zeitgeist Films

* So? What “made in China” entails

July 11


Two tales of desire and despair intertwine in this imported drama set in Acapulco. With Fernando Becerril, Juan Pablo Castaneda, Diana Garcia, Miriana Moro and Emilo Valdes. Written and directed by Gerardo Naranjo. In Spanish with English subtitles. IFC First Take

* So? Seedy beach

July 13

Dynamite Warrior

A young man seeks to avenge his parents’ murder by tracking down the man responsible. With Dan Chupong, Leo Putt, Panna Ritthikrai. Directed by Chalerm Wongpim. In Thai with English subtitles. Magnolia Pictures

* So? Vigilante, Thai style


Suite 1408 at the Dolphin Hotel is supposedly haunted, which is perfect for a writer (John Cusack) working on a book about haunted hotel rooms. When he decides to stay the night, he experiences something out of a Stephen King story, which is appropriate, since screenwriters Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski adapted King’s short story. With Samuel L. Jackson and Mary McCormack. Directed by Mikael Hafstrom. Weinstein Co. / MGM


* So? Horror hotel

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

It’s Harry’s fifth year at Hogwarts and the evil Voldemort is loose, but the young wizard and his friends must first deal with a meddling new professor intent on disrupting their preparations for the coming battle against evil. With Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Michael Gambon, Richard Griffiths, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Alan Rickman, Fiona Shaw, Maggie Smith, Imelda Staunton, David Thewlis, Emma Thompson and Julie Walters. Screenplay by Michael Goldenberg, based on the novel by J.K. Rowling. Directed by David Yates. Also in Imax theaters. Warner Bros.

* So? Doesn’t matter what we think


A reporter (Steve Buscemi) and a B-list actress (Sienna Miller, both above) cross swords in this tale based on a drama by the late Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh. Buscemi directs. Written by David Schachter. Sony Pictures Classics

* So? Improbable but clever

Lights in the Dusk

This installment of a trilogy that began with “Drifting Clouds” and “The Man Without a Past” deals with loneliness, as a single man struggles against a harsh world. Written and directed by Aki Kaurismaki. In Finnish and Russian with English subtitles. Strand Releasing

* So? Attractively gloomy

My Best Friend

Realizing he has no friends, a self-important antiques dealer engages an affable taxi driver to teach him how to be liked. With Daniel Auteuil. Written and directed by Patrice Leconte. In French with English subtitles. IFC Films

* So? Messrs. Lonely

Talk to Me

Don Cheadle plays Ralph Waldo “Petey” Greene, the real-life radio personality from the 1960s who broke through color barriers and rallied the black community with his blunt style. With Chiwetel Ejiofor, Taraji P. Henson, Mike Epps, Vondie Curtis Hall, Cedric the Entertainer and Martin Sheen. Screenplay by Michael Genet, revisions by Rick Famuyiwa and Kasi Lemmons. Directed by Lemmons. Focus Features

* So? A time you actually enjoyed listening

July 20


An insomniac art student discovers he has a special gift when he takes a job on a supermarket’s graveyard shift. With Sean Biggerstaff, Emilia Fox, Shaun Evans. Writer-director Sean Ellis expanded his Oscar-nominated short. Magnolia Pictures


* So? Time trick

Fierce People

Diane Lane plays a working-class mom with a drug problem who moves with her teenage son (Anton Yelchin) to a country club suburb and into conflict with the natives. Donald Sutherland, Kristen Stewart, Elizabeth Perkins, Paz de la Huerta and Chris Evans costar. Directed by Griffin Dunne. After Dark Films

* So? Anthropology of social strata

Goya’s Ghosts

Stellan Skarsgard portrays the Spanish painter in this historical epic directed by Milos Forman (“Amadeus”). With Javier Bardem and Natalie Portman. Written by Forman and Jean-Claude Carriere. Samuel Goldwyn Films

* So? Merciless realism


The film version of the stage musical based on John Waters’ 1988 comedy about dance-crazy teens in early-1960s Baltimore. With John Travolta, Queen Latifah, Michelle Pfeiffer, Christopher Walken, Amanda Bynes, Allison Janney, Brittany Snow, Zac Efron, Elijah Kelley. Director Adam Shankman. Screenplay by Leslie Dixon. New Line Cinema

* So? Infectiously energetic

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry

“The King of Queens’ ” Kevin James and Adam Sandler, pictured from left, star as firefighters and best buddies who scheme to reap the benefits afforded to same-sex domestic partners in this comedy. With Jessica Biel. Written by Barry Fanaro and Alexander Payne & Jim Taylor, story by Lew Gallo. Directed by Dennis Dugan. Universal Pictures

* So? Judgment reserved

July 25

This Is England

A disaffected youth falls in with a gang of violent “skinheads” in this gritty drama set in the early 1980s. With Thomas Turgoose, Stephen Graham, Jo Hartley. Written and directed by Shane Meadows. IFC First Take

* So? Male bonding of a different sort

July 27

Gandhi, My Father

The eldest son of the Indian leader carries the burden of his identity, rebelliously converting to Islam, then back to Hinduism. With Darshan Jariwala, Akshaye Khanna, Bhumika Chawla, Shefali Shah and Daniel Janks. Written and directed by Feroz Khan. In Hindi with English subtitles. Eros Entertainment


* So? Like father ...

I Know Who Killed Me

Lindsay Lohan, above, stars in this tale of mystery, mayhem and mistaken identity. With Julia Ormond, Neal McDonough and Brian Geraghty. Directed by Chris Sivertson. Written by Jeffrey Hammond. Tri Star Pictures

* So? Apropos


Romain Duris stars as the young French playwright during his years as a failed actor when he becomes ensnared in a situation very much like the one that would become the scenario for “Tartuffe.” Written by Laurent Tirard and Gregoire Vigneron. Directed by Tirard. In French with English subtitles. Sony Pictures Classics

* So? Inspired irony

No Reservations

There’s nothing like kids and love to disrupt a life, and that’s exactly what happens to a no-nonsense Manhattan chef (Catherine Zeta-Jones, above) who inherits a niece (Abigail Breslin) and meets a charismatic sous-chef (Aaron Eckhart, above) at the same time. With Patricia Clarkson. Screenplay by Carol Fuchs, based on the 2001 film “Mostly Martha” by Sandra Nettelbeck. Directed by Scott Hicks (“Shine”). Warner Bros.

* So? Recipe for luv

The Simpsons Movie

Most TV series are off the air before they reach the big screen, but after 18 seasons, 400 episodes and no immediate end in sight, Matt Groening and company went ahead and did a movie simultaneously. With the voices of Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Nancy Cartwright, Yeardley Smith, Hank Azaria, Harry Shearer, Pamela Hayden, Tress MacNeille and Albert Brooks. Directed by David Silverman. 20th Century Fox

* So? Lots of d’oh!


Rival factions compete for control of a half-breed boy whose powers control the destiny of a race bound by the blood of the wolf. With Jason Behr, Elias Koteas, Rhona Mitra. Written by James DeMonaco & Todd Harthan & James Roday. Directed by James Isaac. After Dark Films

* So? Lycanthropes

July TBA

Eleven Men Out

Rejected by his teammates after coming out of the closet, Iceland’s star soccer player quits the pros and joins an amateur team of gay men. Written by Robert I. Douglas and Jon Atli Jonason. Directed by Douglas. In Icelandic with English subtitles. Here! Films/Regent Releasing


* So? Out of touch


Two groups of hit men converge on the Portuguese colony of Macau on the eve of a takeover by China. With Anthony Wong, Frances Ng, Simon Yam, Lam Suet. Directed by Johnnie To. Magnolia Pictures

* So? Electrifying look at male mores

Fat Girls

Coming-of-age story about a gay teen (Ash Christian) and his plus-size female best friend struggling as outcasts at a small-town Texas high school. Written and directed by Christian. Here! Films/Regent Releasing

* So? Curiously appealing

I Have Never Forgotten You: The Life and Legacy of Simon Wiesenthal

Nicole Kidman narrates this documentary on the famed Holocaust survivor who helped track down 1,000 Nazi war criminals and spent six decades fighting injustice and anti-Semitism. Directed by Richard Trank. Written by Rabbi Marvin Hier and Trank. Moriah Films

* So? Reluctant hero

Naming Number Two

Ruby Dee plays a matriarch who seeks to restore a sense of togetherness in her large extended family in this drama. Written and directed by Toa Fraser. Cyan Pictures

* So? Sort of matriarch de triumph

The Strangers

This thriller stars Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman as a suburban couple being terrorized by unknown assailants. Written and directed by Bryan Bertino. Rogue Pictures

* So? Pushed to the limit

Aug. 1

El Cantante

Husband and wife Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez, above, star in this biopic of the rise of Puerto Rican salsa music pioneer Hector Lavoe. Written by Leon Ichaso and David Darmstaeder & Todd Anthony Bello. Directed by Ichaso. In Spanish and English with English subtitles. Picturehouse


* So? Implications of vanity

Aug. 3

Becoming Jane

Jane Austen’s early years, with Anne Hathaway as the budding writer. With Maggie Smith, Julie Walters and James McAvoy. Written by Sarah Williams and Kevin Hood. Directed by Julian Jarrold. Miramax Films

* So? Speculatively romantic

The Bourne Ultimatum

Hyper-efficient killing machine Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) goes on the run again when the people who trained him attempt to bump him off. With Julia Stiles, Joan Allen and David Strathairn. Screenplay by Tony Gilroy, Tom Stoppard, Scott Burns and Paul Attanasio. Directed by Paul Greengrass. Universal Pictures

* So? More of a good thing

Hot Rod

Saturday Night Live’s “Lazy Sunday” star Andy Samberg plays an Evel Knievel-like stuntman who plans to jump 15 buses to save his abusive stepfather’s life, so he can then fight him. With Isla Fisher, Jorma Taccone, Bill Hader, Sissy Spacek and Ian McShane. Screenplay by Pam Brady and Samberg & Taccone & Akiva Schaffer, story by Brady. Directed by Schaffer. Paramount Pictures

* So? Leap of faith

One to Another

Hedonism leads to homicide for a group of young friends in this imported thriller. Directed by Jean-Marc Barr and Pascal Arnold. Written by Arnold. In French with English subtitles. Strand Releasing

* So? Pseudo sophisticated, very French

Resurrecting the Champ

A reporter (Josh Hartnett) befriends a washed-up boxing great (Samuel L. Jackson) in this inspirational drama. With Kathryn Morris, Alan Alda, Teri Hatcher, David Paymer, Harry J. Lennix, Peter Coyote. Directed by Rod Lurie. Yari Film Group

* So? Ambition vs. substance

The Ten

Ten interwoven tales based on the biblical commandments find comedy in behaving badly. With Paul Rudd, Jessica Alba, Winona Ryder, Adam Brody, Gretchen Mol, Famke Janssen, Rob Corddry, Liev Schreiber, Oliver Platt, Justin Theroux and Ken Marino. Directed by David Wain. ThinkFilm


* So? Making mischief


An ordinary beagle is given superhuman powers and the voice of Jason Lee in this live-action adaptation of the popular cartoon series. With Jim Belushi, Peter Dinklage, Alex Neuberger, Taylor Momsen, John Slattery, Patrick Warburton, Brad Garrett; with the voice of Amy Adams as Polly and Lee as Underdog. Written by Adam Rifkin and Joe Piscatella & Craig A. Williams. Directed by Frederik Du Chau. Walt Disney Pictures

* So? No need to fear?

Aug. 10


The popular line of fashion-conscious dolls spawns this live-action film. Lionsgate

* So? Featurized product placement

Daddy Day Camp

Cuba Gooding Jr. takes over for Eddie Murphy in this follow-up to “Daddy Day Care.” Fred Savage makes his feature directing debut. Screenplay by Geoff Rodkey, J. David Stem and David N. Weiss. Tri Star Pictures

* So? Cuba Gooding, family man

Rocket Science

An awkward teen negotiates the indignities of adolescence in this coming-of-age tale written and directed by Jeffrey Blitz (“Spellbound”). With Reece Thompson, Anna Kendrick and Nicholas D’Agosto. Picturehouse

* So? Genuinely idiosyncratic

Rush Hour 3

Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan, pictured from left, reprise their roles as buddy cops, this time traveling to Paris to battle a Chinese crime family. Written by Jeff Nathanson. Directed by Brett Ratner. New Line Cinema

* So? Twice was probably more than enough

The Signal

A transmission of unknown origin drives an entire populace to homicidal rage in this futuristic horror tale. Written and directed by David Bruckner, Dan Bush and Jacob Gentry. Magnolia Pictures


* So? Fatal static


A simple English villager (Charlie Cox) embarks on an epic journey to retrieve a fallen star, which has transformed into a girl (Claire Danes). Along the way, he encounters an evil witch (Michelle Pfeiffer, pictured), an ambitious king (Peter O’Toole), a pirate (Robert De Niro) and a sneaky salesman (Ricky Gervais). With Sienna Miller and Jason Flemyng. Screenplay by Jane Goldman & Matthew Vaughn, based on the book by Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess. Directed by Vaughn. Paramount Pictures

* So? A Gaiman fairy tale

2 Days in Paris

Julie Delpy (“Before Sunrise”) writes, directs and costars as a French photographer who brings her American boyfriend (Adam Goldberg) home to meet her folks. In English and French with English subtitles. Samuel Goldwyn Films & Red Envelope Entertainment

* So? Personal touch

Aug. 17

The Invasion

People are acting wacky in Washington and it’s not an election year -- must be an alien invasion! That’s the theory of a psychiatrist (Nicole Kidman, above) who fears for the safety of her son. With Daniel Craig and Jeremy Northam. Screenplay by David Kajganich, yet another version of the tale “The Body Snatchers” by Jack Finney. Directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel. Warner Bros.

* So? Lots of last-minute tinkering

The King of Kong

Bragging rights and a Guinness World Record are on the line in this documentary detailing two men’s obsession with a classic video game. Directed by Seth Gordon. Picturehouse

* So? Weirdly addictive


Christina Ricci plays a girl born with a pig snout due to a family curse who must learn to accept herself in this modern fable. With James McAvoy, Catherine O’Hara, Peter Dinklage, Richard E. Grant, Simon Woods, Reese Witherspoon. Written by Leslie Caveny. Directed by Mark Palansky. IFC Films

* So? Was this inspired by a “Twilight Zone” episode?


“The 40 Year-Old Virgin” director Judd Apatow produced this story of much younger virgins as two high school friends go off to college and race to get lucky. With Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, Seth Rogen and Bill Hader. Written by Evan Goldberg and Rogen. Directed by Greg Mottola (“Daytrippers”). Columbia Pictures


* So? Timeless quest

Wedding Daze

Disillusioned by love, a jilted man (Jason Biggs) makes a sudden proposal to a waitress he doesn’t know (Isla Fisher) and the two embark on a surprising relationship. With Joe Pantoliano, Edward Herrmann, Rob Corddry, Michael Weston. Written and directed by Michael Ian Black. MGM

* So? Why not?

Aug. 22

Out of the Blue

One man’s murderous rampage through a small New Zealand village is recalled in this fact-based drama. Directed by Robert Sarkies. IFC First Take

* So? Study in mayhem

Aug. 24

The Comebacks

Spoof of inspirational sports movies, with David Koechner as a down-on-his-luck football coach. Directed by Tom Brady -- the one who directed “The Hot Chick,” not the New England Patriots quarterback. Fox Atomic

* So? Champion dweebs

Good Luck Chuck

Dane Cook (above with Jessica Alba) stars as a successful dentist who is plagued by a teenage curse -- any woman he sleeps with finds true love with the next guy she meets. With Dan Fogler. Written by Josh Stolberg. Directed by Mark Helfrich. Lionsgate

* So? Appropriate punishment

The Hottest State

A bittersweet romance that distills the joy, pain, erotic highs and emotional lows of first love. With Catalina Sandino Moreno, Laura Linney, Mark Webber, Michelle Williams, Sonia Braga and Ethan Hawke. Directed by Hawke, who adapted his own novel. ThinkFilm

* So? Out of his depth

Aug. 31


Jennifer Lopez stars as a journalist investigating the hundreds of murders of women in Juarez, Mexico, since 1993 -- and the cover-up that has kept them unsolved. Antonio Banderas, Sonia Braga and Martin Sheen also star. Written and directed by Gregory Nava. In English and Spanish with English subtitles. ThinkFilm


* So? Story deserves to be told

The Brothers Solomon

Fathering a child is easier said than done for two socially inept brothers (Will Arnett, left, and Will Forte, with Kristen Wiig) who were raised in a remote arctic location. With Chi McBride and Malin Akerman. Written by Forte. Directed by Bob Odenkirk. Screen Gems

* So? Paternal confusion

Death Sentence

Kevin Bacon stars as a businessman who turns vigilante after his oldest son is killed in a gang-initiation ritual. With Garrett Hedlund, Kelly Preston, Aisha Tyler and John Goodman. Written by Ian Mackenzie Jeffers, based on the novel by Brian Garfield. Directed by James Wan. 20th Century Fox

* So? Bacon as Charles Bronson?


Writer-director Rob Zombie promises a reimagining of the enduring franchise. With Malcolm McDowell, Brad Dourif, Scout Taylor-Compton and Tyler Mane. Weinstein Co. / MGM

* So? Is there anything left to say?

Ladron que Roba a Ladron

When they’re turned down by their old gang, a pair of ace cons turn to immigrant laborers to pull a score on an infomercial director. Written by JoJo Henrickson. Directed by Joe Menendez. In Spanish with English subtitles. Lionsgate

* So? Turning tables

Mr. Bean’s Holiday

Rowan Atkinson takes his pratfalling, nearly mute character, Mr. Bean, on vacation to Cannes, France, where he’s mistaken for a kidnapper and a world-famous filmmaker. With Emma de Caunes, Jean Rochefort, Antoine de Caunes and Willem Dafoe. Directed by Steve Bendelack. Written by Robin Driscoll and Hamish McColl, story by Simon McBurney. Universal Pictures

* So? Acquired taste


Director and co-writer Eric Byler examines the lives of a group of thirtysomething friends in this drama. With Daniel Cariaga, Alix Koromzay, co-writer Kimberly-Rose Wolter and Erik McDowell. Cinema Libre Studio


* So? Manipulative menage

Wristcutters: A Love Story

Patrick Fugit plays a young man whose suicide leads him to an afterworld where he bonds with a Russian musician and an impudent hitchhiker. With Tom Waits and Will Arnett. Written and directed by Goran Dukic, based on a novella by Etgar Keret. After Dark Films

* So? Unconventional triangle

Aug. TBA


The story of the man who would become Tibet’s greatest saint. With Jamyang Lodro. Written by Neten Chokling & Tenzing Choyang Gyari. Directed by Chokling. In Tibetan with English subtitles. Sony Pictures Classics

* So? A vengeful Buddhist?

Care Bears: Oopsy Does It!

The cuddly ursiform creatures return in a new animated tale. Directed by Davis Doi. 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

* So? Cuddly winks

Sept. 7

In the Shadow of the Moon

The surviving Apollo astronauts discuss what it was like to take that one small step onto the lunar surface in

this documentary featuring previously unreleased footage from NASA’s archives.

Featuring Jim Lovell (Apollo 8 and 13), Dave Scott (Apollo 9 and 15), John Young (Apollo 10 and 16), Gene Cernan (Apollo 10 and 17), Mike Collins (Apollo 11), Buzz Aldrin (Apollo 11), Alan Bean (Apollo 12), Edgar Mitchell (Apollo 14), Charlie Duke (Apollo 16) and Harrison Schmitt (Apollo 17). Directed by David Sington. ThinkFilm

* So? When space mattered

Shoot ‘em Up

Paul Giamatti, left above, plays the bad guy, who wants a newborn baby. Clive Owen, right, and Monica Bellucci play unlikely allies who must keep the baby from him no matter what. Written and directed by Michael Davis. New Line Cinema


* So? Parental misguidance


A Mexican teen tries to rescue his sister from sex traffickers. With Kevin Kline, Tim Reid. Written by Jose Rivera (“The Motorcycle Diaries”), story by Peter Landesman and Rivera. Directed by Marco Kreuzpaintner. Lionsgate

* So? Unsavory


About the list

This Sneaks list is a snapshot of films expected to open through Sept. 7. Dates and other details are subject to change.

Summer Sneaks

Capsules compiled by Matthew J. Cooper, Kevin Crust, Kinsey Lowe and Ed Stockly.