Director J.J. Abrams has put the pop back in summer popcorn movies. His Star Trek, an exciting and sassy revamp of the classic sci-fi TV show and film series, is a blast in every sense of the word. Coming as it does on the heels of an uninspired X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Trek is a kick-ass reminder that in the right hands and with savvy casting, anything old can be gloriously new again.
This Trek starts with the birth of James Tiberius Kirk (Pine, boyishly engaging) during a space disaster. It then briefly visits him as a reckless child, a rebellious young man and finally as a Starfleet Academy cadet who sneaks aboard to join the crew of the newly built starship USS Enterprise as it heads off on a dangerous mission. In introducing other familiar characters (Look, it's Spock! It's Bones!), the film pays respect to tradition while fondly tweaking it. There's much wit here, bang-up action scenes and a twisting plot that will make sense to those who truly care to follow it. May this latest incarnation of the series live long and prosper. (For more on Trek, see page 99.)
Gael García Bernal, Diego Luna | R |
Soccer moms, soccer players and even total klutzes will get a big kick out of this amiable but affecting comedy about two hick brothers (Bernal and Luna) from rural Mexico who find success as pro soccer players in Mexico City. Rudo y Cursi (Spanish for "Tough and Corny," which are the brothers' nicknames) reunites that talented Mexican screen duo Bernal and Luna for the first time since Y tu Mamá También, their 2001 international hit. As the brothers gain fame on the field, they succumb to temptations off it (a pricey gal pal for one sibling, gambling and drugs for the other), and their family ties are tested. Bernal, playing the dopier of the two, is a wonderfully earnest clown, while Luna gets laughs with his twitchy anxiousness. (In Spanish with English subtitles.)
Robert Pattinson, Javier Beltran, Matthew McNulty | R |
Cross young love with artistic talent and you'll get extra helpings of suffering and angst. So it is for painter Salvador Dalí (Pattinson) and poet-playwright Federico García Lorca (Beltran) when the youths meet at college in Madrid in 1922. Though they're instantly attracted, cultural taboos initially keep them apart in this muddled romantic drama. Pattinson offers, appropriately, a surrealistic turn as Dalí, flitting dreamily from one emotional extreme to the next.
>STAR TREK: THE WRATH OF KHAN (1982) Our fave of the 10 earlier Trek flicks, this one boasts the best Trek baddie ever, Ricardo Montalban (left), as power-crazed Khan.
GALAXY QUEST (1999) In a clever comedy, the has-been stars (including Sigourney Weaver, left) of a Trek-like TV series come to the aid of real aliens. Love this.
Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoë Saldaña, Leonard Nimoy, Eric Bana | PG-13 |