300

Christina Choi

At the State Theater, Quality 16 and Showcase

2 OR 4 out of 5 stars

According to our dueling critics, “300” is either an “aggressive and exuberantly stupid spectacle (that) purports to get the audience off, but there’s no fire, no heat, and in the end the whole thing turns into a frigid parade of limbs and egos mutilated beyond repair,” or it “speaks to themes of loyalty, honor and duty, but no one bought a ticket to see ‘themes,’ they came to see a battle. And the fighting itself is so beautiful and well-orchestrated it carries the movie.” Either way, it’s become the film event of the winter.

Wild Hogs

At Quality 16 and Showcase

2 out of 5 stars

Predictable, generic comedy whose only redeeming quality is its big-name stars (the dubious combination of Tim Allen, Martin Lawrence, William H. Macy and John Travolta).

Ghost Rider

At Quality 16 and Showcase

0 out of 5 stars

If you’re a fan of over-the-hill, mediocre actors playing superheroes, “Ghost Rider” is the movie for you. Of course, this isn’t just any superhero – Ghost Rider (Nicolas Cage) is a superhero with a motorcycle, flaming skeleton head and powers of a satanic minion, although for some reason he uses them for good. This whole package is a hard pill to swallow. But Eva Mendes is hot, right?

Black Snake Moan

At the State Theater

3 out of 5 stars

When a down-on-his-luck farmer (go-to Hollywood presence Samuel L. Jackson) finds a beat-up, unconscious, half-naked young woman on the side of the road (Christina Ricci, “Prozac Nation”), he takes it upon himself to “cure” her of her “wickedness” – the hard way. Hint: It involves chains.

Zodiac

At Quality 16 and Showcase

3 out of 5 stars

“Zodiac” opens in 1968 and doesn’t stop jumping weeks from there, months and even years, following the various men – a drug-addled San Francisco Chronicle reporter (Robert Downey Jr.), a family-man detective (Mark Ruffalo) and, eventually, a cartoonist (Jake Gyllenhaal) – who take charge of and are slowly consumed by the investigation into California’s most notorious (and elusive) serial killer.

Bridge to Terabithia

At Quality 16 and Showcase

2.5 out of 5 stars

With a trailer featuring computer-generated giants and swarms of insect-like warriors, Disney is eager to pawn “Terabithia” off as a “Chronicles of Narnia” replica. But director Gabor Csupo goes too far in stripping away the fantasy and turning the film into a rehash of 1991’s “My Girl” – strong drama, but little escapism.

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