IV No. 7
publication of the National Association of Theatre Owners
in In Focus
Thai-language comedy about a volleyball team – comprised
of homosexuals and transexuals – that decides
to reunite after a copycat team appears. Sequel
to the 2001 comedy. Returnees include director-screenwriter
Youngyooth Thongkonthun and actors Kokkorn Benjathikoon,
Anucha Chatkaew, Shiriohana Hongsopon and Giorgio
Maiocchi. Newcomers include Sujira Arunpipat, Surapun
Chawpaknam and Peter Maiocchi. Also known as “Sa
Tree Lex 2.” 100 min. Aug. 13 in New York.
Romantic comedy about a daytime talk show producer
who, while pretending to do research for the
show, phones her noncommittal boyfrend’s
old girlfriends and questions them about past
relationships. Directed by Nick Hurran (“Virtual
Sexuality,” “Undertaking Betty”)
from a screenplay by Elisa Bell (“Vegas
Vacation,” “Sleepover”) and
Melissa Carter. With Brittany Murphy (“Uptown
Girls”), Ron Livingston (“The Cooler”),
Holly Hunter (“Thirteen”), Julianne
Nicholson (“Seeing Other People”),
Rashida Jones (TV’s “Boston Public”),
Sharon Lawrence (“Gossip”), Kathy
Bates (“About Schmidt”), Rick Overton
(“Off the Lip”) and Michael Allman.
Aug. 6. Sony.
Documentary about 19th-century artist and biologist
Ernst Haeckel, whose early paintings of underwater
organisms tested the common philosophy that science
and art existed separately. Written and directed
by David Lebrun. Flat. 60 min. July 30 in New York;
Aug. 27 in Los Angeles. Strand.
French-language comedy about a pugnacious married
couple’s quarrelsome trip to the South
of France to collect their offspring. Based on
the novel by Georges Simenon (“Monsieur
Hire”). Directed by Cédric Kahn
(“L’Ennui”) from a screenplay
by Kahn, Laurence Ferreira Barbosa and Gilles
Marchand (“Harry Is Here to Help”).
With Jean-Pierre Darroussin (“The Town
is Quiet”), Carole Bouquet (“Wasabi”),
Vincent Deniard, Charline Paul and Jean-Pierre
Gos (“Demonlover”). Also known as “Feux
Rouges.” Flat. 106 min. Aug. 20 limited.
Dowd & The Language of Music
Documentary about pre-digital recording engineer
Tom Dowd, who worked with such famed musicians
as Dizzy Gillespie, Aretha Franklin, Eric Clapton,
Ray Charles and the Allman Brothers. Mark Moormann
makes his feature directorial debut. Aug. 13 limited.
Japanese animated adventure about a teen who unlocks
the mystery behind the dangerous Egyptian playing
cards that beckon mythological monsters and magical
forces. Based on the popular kids’ TV series
based on a Japanese comic book. Written and directed
by Ryosuke Takahashi. Flat. Aug. 13. Warner Bros.
Comedy about a trio of friends who embark on a
canoe trip in an effort to find $200,000 in hidden
treasure. Directed by Steven Brill (“Little
Nicky,” “Mr. Deeds”) from a screenplay
by Jay Leggett, Mitch Rouse, Harris Goldberg (“Deuce
Bigelow,” “The Master of Disguise”)
and Tom Nursall (“I’ll Be Home For
Christmas”). With Seth Green (“Scooby
Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed”), Matthew Lillard
(“The Perfect Score”), Dax Shepard
(“Cheaper by the Dozen”), Burt Reynolds
(“Hotel”), Abraham Benrubi (“Open
Range”), Antony Starr and Ethan Suplee (“The
Butterfly Effect”). Scope. PG-13: Some drug
content; sexual material; language; crude humor;
some violence. Aug. 20. Paramount.
Easier for a Camel
French- and Italian-language comedy about an overly-privileged woman
who finds freedom from her stifling riches in an imaginary world she
creates in her mind. Actress Valeria Bruni Tedeschi (“Those Who
Love Me Can Take The Train”) makes her directorial debut from a
screenplay by Tedeschi, Noémie Lvovsky (“La Sentinelle”)
and Agnès de Sacy. With Tedeschi, Chiara Mastroianni (“Carnage”),
Jean-Hugues Anglade (“Taking Lives”), Denis Podalydès
(“Safe Conduct”), Marysa Borini, Lambert Wilson (“Timeline”)
and Emmanuelle Devos (“Read My Lips”). Also known as “Il
est Plus Facile Pour un Chameau.” Flat. 116 min. Aug. 13 in New
York. New Yorker.
Thriller, based on a true story, about two scuba divers who are accidentally
stranded in shark-infested waters after their tour boat leaves without
them. Written and directed by Chris Kentis. With Blanchard Ryan (“Super
Troopers”), Daniel Travis, Saul Stein (“The Holy Land”)
and Estelle Lau. Flat. 79 min. Aug. 6 limited; wider Aug. 20. Lions Gate.
Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
Sequel to the 2001 blockbuster, this time about American-bred Genovian
royal Mia Thermopolis’ close encounter with arranged marriage.
Based on the young adult novels by Meg Cabot (“Boy Meets Girl,” “When
Lightning Strikes”). Returnees from part one include director Garry
Marshall (“Runaway Bride,” “Raising Helen”),
screenwriter Gina Wendkos (“Coyote Ugly”) and actors Anne
Hathaway (“Ella Enchanted”) as Mia, Julie Andrews (“That’s
Life!”) as Clarisse Renaldi, Hector Elizondo (“Raising Helen”)
as Joe, Heather Matarazzo (“Saved!”) as Lilly Moscovitz,
Caroline Goodall (“Chasing Liberty”) as Helen Thermopolis
and Kathleen Marshall (“Raising Helen”) as Charlotte. Newcomers
to the franchise include John Rhys-Davies (the “Lord of the Rings” series)
and Callum Blue. Flat. 120 min. Aug. 11. Buena Vista.
Drama, based on a true story, about a young South African cop who, disgusted
at having to kill rioters in the line of duty, quits the force and
embarks upon a life of crime. Directed by Bronwen Hughes (“Forces
of Nature”) from a screenplay by Ken Friedman (“Bad Girls”)
and Bima Stagg. With Thomas Jane (“The Punisher”), Deborah
Unger (“Thirteen”), David O’Hara (“Made”),
Dexter Fletcher (“Below”), Marius Weyers (“Bopha!”)
and Ashley Taylor. 116 min. R: Violence; language; some sexuality;
nudity. Aug. 6 in New York and Los Angeles; wider Aug. 20. Newmarket.
Mandarin-language epic drama, set in the Gobi desert, about two revered
warriors: a renegade Chinese soldier wanted for leading a violent mutiny;
and a Japanese emissary, whose one ticket back to Japan is the execution
of the Chinese soldier. Directed by He Ping (“Red Firecracker,
Green Firecracker”) from a screenplay by Ping and Zhang Rui. With
Jiang Wen (“Devils on the Doorstep”), Kiichi Nakai, Wang
Zueqi, Zhao Wei (“Shaolin Soccer”), Hasi Bagen and He Tao.
Also known as “Tian di Ying Xiong.” Scope. 120 min. R: Violence.
Aug. 27. Sony Pictures Classics.
Don’t Live Here Anymore
Drama about two couples whose longtime friendship is tested by infidelity.
Based on the short stories “Adultery” and “We Don’t
Live Here Anymore” by Andre Dubus (“In the Bedroom”).
Directed by John Curran (“Praise”) from a screenplay by Larry
Gross (“True Crime,” “Crime and Punishment in Suburbia”).
With Naomi Watts (“Ned Kelly,” “Untertaking Betty”),
Mark Ruffalo (“13 Going On 30,” “Collateral”),
Peter Krause (“The Truman Show”), Laura Dern (“I am
Sam”), Sam Charles and Haili Page. Also known as “Anymore.” Scope.
103 min. Aug. 13. Warner Independent Pictures.
Czech-language drama, set during the German occupation of the Czech Republic,
about a young nurse who forms a unique bond with a rural mountain-man – whose
life she saves with her blood. Based on the novel by Kveta Legatova.
Directed by Ondrej Trojan from a screenplay by Petr Jarchovsky. With
Anna Geislerova, György Cserhalmi, Jaroslava Adamova, Miroslav
Donutil and Jaroslav Dusek (“Divided We Fall”). Flat.
148 min. Aug. 27. Sony Pictures Classics.
Japanese-language actioner, set in the 19th century, about a blind,
nomadic master swordsman who runs afoul of a ruthless gang leader’s
henchmen. Based on the series of novels by Kan Shimozawa. Written
and directed by Takeshi Kitano (“Kikujiro,” “Brother”).
With Kitano (“Brother”), Tadanobu Asano (“Taboo”),
Yui Natsukawa, Michiyo Ookusu, Gadarukanaru Taka (“Warm Water
Under a Red Bridge”) and Yuuko Daike (“Fireworks”).
R: Strong stylized bloody violence. July 16 in New York and Los