by INLANDER STAFF & r & & r & CHOKE & r & & r & A guy (Sam Rockwell) scams restaurant patrons by pretending to choke on food, then accepts money from them as they get involved in his life. Is he just a con man? It's not that simple: He needs the money so he can take care of his Alzheimer's-addled mother. On the other hand, he spends his days cruising sex-addiction workshops, looking to score. It's all based, of course, on Portland author Chuck Palahniuk's novel. (MB) Rated R
Using cell phones and GPS and whatever, some mean old lady is tracking Shia LeBeouf and Michelle Monaghan's every move! It's so creepy! And they're, like, being framed as terrorists, so now the entire country is chasing after them! They're trying so hard to be like Hitchcock and, you know, win Oscars! Which they won't. (MB) Rated PG-13
Working as a firefighter for the city, Caleb Holt (Kirk Cameron) is known across town as a hero. Although he regularly rescues people from burning buildings, his marriage is going down the drain. Cameron's character is about to give up and leave his wife when his father sends him on a "Love Dare." So he sets out to stay in his marriage another 40 days. Holt then begs God to make him a good husband. The tagline for this movie is "Never Leave Your Partner Behind." And that just about says it all. (TLM) Rated PG
Days before Christmas, single mom Ray Eddy (Melissa Leo) and her children are about to become homeless. With her husband gone with all their savings, Mrs. Eddy needs to find funds fast or lose her manufactured home. To raise the cash, the desperate mother smuggles people across a little-known border crossing on the Mohawk reservation between New York State and Quebec. There she meets a Mohawk woman named Lila (Misty Upham) who coaches her how to ferry people across borders. Sundance Film Festival 2008 Grand Jury Prize winner. (TLM) Rated R.
THE LUCKY ONES
Rachel McAdams, Michael Pena and Tim Robbins portray three soldiers trying to reassemble their lives after returning home from the war in Iraq. After they realize that their family and friends at home have moved on, the three embark on a road trip. (TLM) Rated R
MIRACLE AT ST. ANNA
Spike Lee follows up his mainstream Inside Man with a mainstream World War II film centering on the U.S. Army's all-black infantry division, known as the Buffalo Soldiers. This based-on-fact story recounts how four of them get caught behind German lines in 1944 Tuscany, and how they formed relationships with Italian villagers -- some of whom were partisans, while others were fascists. The story, both brutal and tender, is about racism and camaraderie. It even spins a pretty good mystery. (ES) Rated R
NIGHTS IN RODANTHE
Diane Lane is at odds with her husband and daughter, so she agrees to escape by spending a weekend house-sitting a friend's inn on the seacoast of North Carolina. And wouldn't you know it? -- of all the B & amp;B joints in all the world -- in walks ... Richard Gere. (Ladies, you should be so lucky.) He's tormented, of course, by personal problems of his own. Is that romance we can smell in the salty sea air? (MB) Rated PG-13
Sports drama; seen it. Demanding father vs. wayward son, check. But this movie presents an unusual sport: rugby. And the art direction looks good, with cascades of sweat backlit by the sun as bodies crash and kicked balls, um, soar over goalposts. Sean "Frodo" Astin plays a sidekick, plus there's Gary Cole as the inspiring coach, and, as the mean-Dad coach, Neil McDonogh (who apparently exemplifies the claim that rugby players eat their dead). (MB) Rated PG-13
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.