Opening Films

by Inlander Staff & r & & r & American Haunting -- In the early 1800s, John Bell died of what the state of Tennessee called "Spirits," making him the only person U.S. history to have been killed, in the eyes of a state government, by a ghost. The event, supposedly, was incredibly well documented at the time and has been revamped here, for the PG-13 tween horror set. It's scary the way we mistreat history. Rated PG-13

Mission Impossible: III -- From its failed-experiment opening sequence to its sharp dialogue, exotic locations and pure spectacle, this high-test action picture brilliantly weaves around a classic Hitchcockian MacGuffin. Tom Cruise excels like an all-star athlete in executing the bulk of the film's impressive stunts while surrounded by a stellar ensemble cast. Writer/director J.J. Abrams achieves something of a minor masterpiece with a postmodern sense of humor and hypnotic infatuation with maintaining multiple layers of emotional and physical suspense in nearly every scene. (CS) Rated PG-13

Hoot -- "If they build that pancake place, those owls are toast!" comes the plaintive cry of countless do-gooding kids. This is apparently based on the true story of some youngsters who fought the law (and big pancake-making business) to save some birds. Lessons will be learned. Rated PG