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Anger Management

Misconceived pairing of Adam Sandler and Jack Nicholson, but still curiously enjoyable and often funny. Sandler underplays (though not to the extent he did in Punch-Drunk Love) as a geek wrongly diagnosed with rage problems; Jack's the quack assigned to set him straight. Comic twist being: Jack's borderline deranged. While some scenes misfire, there's usually a weird (intentional or not) tension between the two, each straining to pull off this unlikely marriage. They just about do.

Charlie’s Angels 2: Full Throttle

With barely a nod to the notion of storyline, this is another loud, brash series of MTV sketches, big on energy, little on brain. Somehow the idea of three scantily-clad chicks getting along okay with each other is pitched as pop-feminist empowerment. Diaz, Barrymore and Liu kick ass and chew scenery; Demi Moore is freakish; the (great) soundtrack rides roughshod over everything. Candy floss.

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Paul Schrader deals with intriguing, uncomfortable issues here, but with, for him, a slightly saddening conservatism. Telling the story of Bob Crane, the '50s star of Hogan's Heroes, whose career nosedived as he became increasingly addicted to filming his own sexploits, it's initially vibey and buzzing, with a terrific turn from Greg Kinnear, but later lapses into soggy moralising and mopey depression.

Terminator 3: Rise Of The Machines

Impossible to watch this already without wondering how Arnie must've calculated it'd boost his electoral campaign. The Governor of California returns in a shiny sequel to T2 which borrows much of that film's story and dynamics. Jonathan Mostow helms explosively, Nick Stahl and Kristanna Loken stand up strong, and it's loudly functional. But thank God he can't be Prez.


Insane collision of thriller and farce, with a kidnapping plot played at volume 11 and cast by a person on amyl. Kevin Bacon and Courtney Love are the bad couple, Charlize Theron and Stuart Townsend the goodies. Charlize attacks Kev with a scalpel hidden down her knickers, but is still less raving bonkers than Courtney. Gloriously dreadful.

Love Liza

After a series of stunning cameo performances and a flamboyant turn opposite Robert De Niro in Flawless, Philip Seymour Hoffman makes full use of his first unopposed lead, running the gamut of grief as a successful techie crushed and drawn to petrol-sniffing by his wife's suicide. Fraught, funny, hysterical and truly touching.

K-19: The Widowmaker

Kathryn Bigelow's Cross Of Iron, basically, with Harrison Ford's Soviet submariners the embattled equivalent of James Coburn's Wehrmacht platoon, both groups of men fighting for their lives in films that perhaps unsurprisingly failed to make a huge impression at the box office. Terrific in parts, with imperious turns from Ford and Liam Neeson, Bigelow handles the action stuff brilliantly though comes close to mawkishness in a tear-stained coda.


Years of Ed Harris' life went into realising this biopic of action painter Jackson Pollock. As director, he's workmanlike, though he does catch the exhilaration of the artist at work. As star, he's superb, avoiding clichés to present Pollock as troubled, selfish and unsympathetic. Oscar-winning Marcia Gay Harden and Jennifer Connelly give layered support. DVD EXTRAS: Commentary from Ed Harris, deleted scenes, Making Of... featurette, Ed Harris interview, filmographies and trailer. Rating Star

Men In Black II

The law of diminishing returns applies as Barry Sonnenfeld hacks out a scant sequel to the initially promising sci-fi spoof. Will Smith must again save the human race from oddly-shaped monsters and hedonistic worms, and so restores Tommy Lee Jones' erased memories. Lara Flynn Boyle replaces Linda Fiorentino, who bailed. Wisely, it'd seem. Funny in flashes.

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