13 Going On 30

BBBB (out of 5) It’s 1987, and 13 year-old Jenna Rink is desperate to fit in with the cool kids at school. She even goes as far as alienating her geeky best friend Matt at her birthday party in order to impress ‘in-crowd’ ringleader Lucy. When she’s sprinkled with some birthday wishing dust and announces … More 13 Going On 30

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Teaching Mrs. Tingle

BB.5 (out of 5) A group of students take their mean-ass teacher (Helen Mirren) hostage in her own home when she won’t negotiate with them for a better grade.  As the authority figure in the room, Mirren has no end of fun chewing up the scenery around her, but the initially inviting premise ends up … More Teaching Mrs. Tingle

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Hope Floats

BBB (out of 5) Nice little drama about a Texan beauty queen (Sandra Bullock) who returns home to her mother after her best friend (Rosanne Arquette) reveals on a talk show that she’s been having an affair with Bullock’s husband. Now she has to rebuild her life from scratch and raise her daughter (Mae Whitman) … More Hope Floats

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Miss Congeniality

BBBB (out of 5) Sandra Bullock makes a decent comedy look like a million bucks with her exceptionally appealing personality. She plays the rough-around-the-edges FBI agent who is assigned the job of going undercover at a beauty pageant when the police start receiving bomb threats from an anonymous psycho. Benjamin Bratt brings his usual lack … More Miss Congeniality

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Mother And Child

BB.5 (out of 5) The multi-strand narrative begins with a teenager giving birth after getting into trouble with her high school boyfriend.  We then fast-forward to thirty seven years later, where a lonely and bitter health care worker (Annette Bening) lives with her mother and writes a diary to the baby she gave up for … More Mother And Child

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I Am Sam

BBB (out of 5) Sean Penn plays a mentally challenged Starbucks employee who winds up with a baby daughter and has to take care of her. When the child reaches the age of seven, Penn finds himself in a courtroom defending his right to raise the girl even though he is of relatively equal mental … More I Am Sam

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White Oleander

BBB (out of 5) Janet Fitch’s best-selling novel reaches the big screen with unexceptional results, making for the second time that Michelle Pfeiffer has adapted an Oprah book selection for the big screen (the first time was The Deep End of the Ocean).  Pfeiffer plays a headstrong, charismatic visual artist whose cutthroat moralizing gets her … More White Oleander

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