by INLANDER STAFF & r & & r & AMERICAN GANGSTER & r & Denzel Washington is the heavy -- the New York drug kingpin who does lots of business under the radar of the Italian Mob in the late 1960s. Russell Crowe is the clean cop -- known among peers, in a derogatory way, as a Boy Scout -- who's out to clean up the streets. By interweaving multiple storylines about family relationships, good and bad cops, and powerful opposites bumping heads, director Ridley Scott and writer Steve Zaillian have created a tight, tough, gripping, nasty movie. (ES) Rated R
Thankfully, those early trailers suggesting that Bee Movie was going to be a live-action film imitating an animated one (with real actors in fuzzy costumes pretending to be cartoon characters) proved false. The film is indeed CG-animated. Jerry Seinfeld (in his first -- and maybe only -- feature role) stars as a honeybee who escapes the hive, discovers that humans are stealing the world's honey, sues, then has to save the planet and its dying plant life. (JS) Rated PG
Grieving widower John Cusack decides to adopt a quirky 6-year-old boy. Kid lives in a cardboard box and thinks he's from Mars. Heartwarming connections between misfit father and son ensue. John's real-life sister Joan plays one of the many characters who think he's not up to the challenge. (MB) Rated PG
Though there have been about a million films about WWII made, very few that reach our shores have been about Japan's occupation of China. Thank God for Ang Lee, then. Lust, Caution adapts an eponymous short story by Chinese author Eileen Chang about a woman asked to befriend, seduce and assassinate a key Japanese collaborator. The work has earned Lee his second Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. Rated NC-17 and currently only on 77 screens, we're shocked/stoked to be getting this film at all, let alone this early in its run. (LB) Rated NC-17
THIS IS ENGLAND
A 12-year-old boy, who wants nothing more than a place to fit in, finds it with a group of skinheads. The boy Shaun, played by Thomas Turgoose, aimlessly follows his new family into the darkest parts of the skinhead world. Set in 1983 Yorkshire, England, this coming-of-age story is a largely autobiographical recount of director Shane Meadows' childhood. The film examines the appeal of the early neo-Nazi movement to fatherless young boys. (TLM) Not Rated
The new one is smart and funny and action-packed, and it’s bigger and better and sleeker. And Downey does it again, this time ramping up Stark’s arrogant wisecracking, telling anyone who’ll listen (mostly women) that, via the creation of his powerful Iron Man suit, he’s brought years of uninterrupted peace to the world.