, Renée Zellweger, John Krasinski | PG-13 |
must have spent many hours tuned to TV's Turner Classic Movies. This genial comedy about the early days of pro football, which Clooney directed, is an intentional throwback to the daffy screwball comedies of the 1930s and '40s that are a staple of the cable channel.
Despite Leatherheads' '30s and '40s vibe, the film is set in 1925, when pro football was still trying to establish a cleat-hold and college ball ruled. Hoping to goose attendance, Dodge Connolly (Clooney), the aging quarterback and coach of a ragtag pro team in Duluth, Minn., recruits Carter Rutherford (Krasinski), a wildly popular college gridiron star and WWI hero. Trouble appears when Lexie Littleton (Zellweger), an ambitious reporter, begins poking into Rutherford's war record. Both men fall for her, though it's plain from their verbal sparring—the sharpest scenes in the movie—that she and Connolly are meant for each other.
Clooney is raffishly charming, and Krasinski shows a sweet self-effacement. Zellweger settles for imitating Rosalind Russell in His Girl Friday
, right down to perching atop desks so that susceptible men will be swayed by her shapely pins. The film is cheerfully entertaining, and you can bring the kids. But, although it strives to be bubbly fun, Leatherheads
is more ginger ale than champagne.
Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Ronnie Wood
The lines deeply etched on his face may resemble an Amtrak route map, but Mick Jagger, now 64, is making no concessions to age. In a splendid concert film, the still snake-hipped lead singer for the Rolling Stones (founded in 1962) scampers ceaselessly across the stage while bellowing classic rock tunes for nearly two hours. Incisively directed by Martin Scorsese and shot over two nights at Stones gigs at the Beacon Theatre in Manhattan in late 2006, Shine a Light makes it clear that for Jagger and original bandmates Richards and Watts (plus Wood, a Stone since 1975), there's still a joy and camaraderie to performing live that can't be faked. Popping up briefly to join the party are Christina Aguilera
, Jack White and Buddy Guy.
Norah Jones, Jude Law
, Natalie Portman
, Rachel Weisz| PG-13 |
During this movie's many meal scenes, you spend more time lusting after the contents of the characters' plates than listening to what they're saying. My Blueberry Nights
(the title refers to blueberry pie), the first English-language film by Chinese director Wong Kar Wai (In the Mood for Love
), is gorgeously shot but as vacant as its questing heroine (Jones, merely adequate in her acting debut). She hits the road and meets loudly colorful types (Weisz and Portman), all the while sending rambling updates on postcards back to Law, a cafe owner carrying a torch for her back in Manhattan. Me, I just want the pie.
The Fantastic Four
star partners with Keanu Reeves
in the new cop thriller Street Kings
WAS IT HARD FIGHTING CRIME WITHOUT SUPERPOWERS? Keanu and I did gun- and fight-training. They said, "Put on a pair of gloves and spar." He knocked the wind out of me a couple of times.
DID YOU HIT BACK? I tried!
EVER TANGLE WITH THE LAW? I've driven cross-country a bunch of times and never made it without a speeding ticket. Once I got three tickets in Ohio within 20 minutes. The third cop laughed and gave me a warning.
The former Facts of Life
star, 41, ditches her Eastland kilt to play a saucy assistant in the new comedy Sex and Death 101
IN THIS MOVIE YOU GET TO SWEAR A BLUE STREAK. I have a mouth like a truck driver. I mean, I can't help it, poop and farts are funny.
WHAT WOULD MRS. GARRETT SAY? Sometimes I feel like Fonzie's jacket. People see me and they want to try me on and be nostalgic. I cherish it, but I also don't let it define me.
DOES IT EVER GET OLD? People think they know me, even if they don't know me. So I move through the world as if it's my little town, and that's a very comforting thing. I'm very lucky.
WERE YOU EVER PRESSURED TO LOSE WEIGHT? No, I wasn't treated that way. Natalie wasn't the fat girl. Natalie was Natalie.
IS A REALITY SHOW IN YOUR FUTURE? I should be in the Guinness World Records book for the person most offered reality shows. I don't want to play Mindy Cohn on television. Do I need to remind the public that I was on The Facts of Life? No!
YOU'RE ALSO THE VOICE OF VELMA ON SCOOBY-DOO. HOW COOL IS THAT? Now that's the freakin' icon! Everyone can have Natalie. I'll take Velma.
Norah Jones isn't the first pop songbird to try movies. A recent roll call includes:
Debut: 2005's The Dukes of Hazzard
(below). Critics said: Her smile was dazzlingly white. Up next: The Love Guru
, with Mike Myers, due June 20.
KNOWLES Debut: 2002's Austin Powers in Goldmember
(right). Critics said: Foxy as Foxxy Cleopatra. Up next: Playing singer Etta James in Cadillac Records
, now shooting.
Debut: 2002's Crossroads
(right). Critics said: Oops, don't do it again. Up next: Nothing scheduled.