An insider's look at organized crime in contemporary Italy, Gomorra won the Grand Jury at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival. Based on a popular book about Italian crime, this movie does not glamorize the gangster life, but shows the violence and chaos that nevertheless attract young people to this underworld. The title refers not only to the Biblical city, but also to "Camorra," a crime organization that rules Naples like an alternate government. Directed by Matteo Garrone. With Salvatore Abruzzese. Categories: Crime, Drama. Year: 2008.
A thriller about the hijacking of a New York City subway train, The Taking of Pelham 123 stars John Travolta as a desperate, armed man who masterminds the crime. Denzel Washington plays the transit worker who just happens to be on duty when the hijacking takes place and has to negotiate with the hijackers. James Gandolfini (Tony on The Sopranos) plays the city's tough mayor who doesn't want to give in to the hijackers' demands. The film is a remake of a Seventies classic. Directed by Tony Scott. With Victor Gojcaj. Categories: Thriller. Year: 2009.
The Taking of Pelham 123
Dennis Quaid stars as the head of a secret army unit that fights terrorism. Based on the popular animated television series, it tells the story of the unit's fight against a shadowy crime organization headed by a Scottish arms dealer (Christopher Eccleston). Sienna Miller and Rachel Nichols are among the well-toned crime fighters. Directed by Stephen Sommers. With Channing Tatum and Marlon Wayans. Categories: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller. Year: 2009.
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Denis Cooverman (Paul Rust) is a nerd who is his high-school valedictorian. During his graduation speech, he tells Beth Cooper (Hayden Panettiere), the most popular girl in the school, that he loves her. She and two of her friends decide to show him the greatest time of his life the night after graduation. The only trouble is, a bunch of creepy jocks are so jealous, they're out to get him. Directed by Chris Columbus. With Jack Carpenter, Shawn Roberts, Lauren London, Alan Ruck, Cynthia Stevenson and Lauren Storm. Categories: Comedy. Year: 2009.
I Love You, Beth Cooper
Fearing deportation to Canada, high-powered book editor Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock) coerces her male assistant Andrew (Ryan Reynolds) to marry her. Andrew agrees to the deal, but only if Margaret will accompany him to Alaska to meet his parents (Mary Steenburgen and Craig T. Nelson) and Grandma Annie (Betty White). Even with an immigration official on their trail and a surprise wedding in the works by Andrew's quirky family, Margaret and Andrew decide to stick to their plan no matter the consequences. Directed by Anne Fletcher. With Denis O'Hare, Malin Akerman, Oscar Nuñez and Aasif Mandvi. Categories: Comedy, Romance. Year: 2009.
Kate Beckinsale plays Annie, a waitress and single mother in a small town. During a very cold winter, problems with her alcoholic ex-husband (Sam Rockwell) develop into a crisis. Michael Angarano is a sensitive teen who has had a crush on Annie since she was his babysitter years before. He tries to help her as best he can, and also struggles to figure out his own relationship with his girlfriend (Olive Thirlby). Directed by David Gordon Green. With Nicky Katt and Gracie Hudson. Categories: Drama, Romance. Year: 2007.
This is a provocative film about Christine (Sasha Grey), an ordinary 22-year-old woman living in New York. She has a boyfriend, a personal trainer, who earns $125 an hour. Christine charges $2,000 an hour for her work as a call girl. It's a life she keeps secret from everyone who knows her. A direct, non-judgmental look at what draws a woman to become a prostitute. Directed by the Oscar-winning Steven Soderbergh. With Chris Santos. Categories: Comedy. Year: 2009.
The Girlfriend Experience
In high school, Rose Lorkowski (Amy Adams) was a popular cheerleader, but now, at 30, she finds herself a single mother working as a maid. In order to get her son into a better school, Rose talks her sister Norah (Emily Blunt), who still lives at home with their father Joe (Alan Arkin), to go into business with her cleaning up crime scenes. Up to their necks in murders, suicides and other messy situations, Rose and Norah build a successful business and find a closeness they've always wanted. Directed by Christine Jeffs. With Jason Spevack, Steve Zahn, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Clifton Collins Jr. and Eric Christian Olsen. Categories: Comedy, Drama, Independent Film. Year: 2008.
This drama with a documentary feel was the surprise winner of the top award at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival in 2008. Based on the memoirs of François Bégaudeau, a high school teacher in a Paris suburb where most students are minorities, it stars François Bégaudeau himself. He tries to keep order and teach in a school where most students don't feel any connection to the country where they live and rebel against him constantly. Directed by Laurent Cantet. Categories: Drama. Year: 2008.
Entre les murs
After picking up two runaways, taxi driver Jack Bruno (Dwayne Johnson) discovers that the pair are actually siblings with paranormal powers. What's more, Tia (AnnaSophia Robb) and Tony (Alexander Ludwig) are being hunted by evil organization that wants to use their powers for their nefarious ends. Though he initially doesn't want to get involved in their trouble, ultimately it's up to Jack to protect the siblings and get them to Witch Mountain before it's too late. Directed by Andy Fickman. With Carla Gugino, Christine Lakin, Cheech Marin, Ciarán Hinds, Tom Everett Scott and Garry Marshall. Categories: Adventure, Comedy, Sci-Fi, Thriller, Family. Year: 2009.
Race to Witch Mountain
A coming-of-age comedy-drama, the film is about Art Bechstein (Jon Foster), a recent college graduate with mixed feelings about his gangster father (Nick Nolte). Art has always kept his family life separate from his friends, but during the summer after he graduates, he meets Cleveland (Peter Sarsgaard), who makes collections for a loan shark buddy of his father's. He also has a romance with a strange girl named Phlox (Mena Suvari) and lusts after Cleveland's girlfriend (Sienna Miller). Based on a novel by Michael Chabon (Wonder Boys). Directed by Rawson Marshall Thurber. With Jack Baun and Omid Abtahi. Categories: Adventure, Comedy, Drama. Year: 2008.
The Mysteries of Pittsburgh