GLADIATOR -- Cinerama, Neptune, Northgate

I DREAMED OF AFRICA -- Various theaters


UP AT THE VILLA -- Seven Gables, Uptown

THE VIRGIN SUICIDES -- Broadway Market, Metro


THE BUñUEL COMPANION -- Consolidated Works

THE FILMS OF LUIS BU--UEL -- Seattle Art Museum

THE FILTH & THE FURY -- Varsity Calendar

FUGAZI, DIY, & THE WHITNEY -- 911 Media Arts


LET MY PUPPETS COME -- Grand Illusion


LIFE IS TO WHISTLE -- Grand Illusion

PIECE D'IDENTITE (I.D.) -- Seattle Asian Art Museum

PRE-CODE CRIME FILMS -- Grand Illusion

PSYCHOLOGY AND FILM -- Seattle Art Museum


SLEEP -- Little Theatre


THROUGH THEIR EYES -- 911 Media Arts



May 12 -- Battlefield Earth, Human Traffic, Center Stage, The Big Kahuna, El Norte, The Trial, Whipped, Screwed, Held Up

May 19 -- Seattle International Film Festival, Dinosaur, Road Trip, Small Time Crooks


28 Days
Sandra Bullock is an alcoholic whose behavior lands her in Serenity Glen, a touchy-feely rehab center filled with the requisite cuddly goofs and embittered oddballs. The film gives its star her big moments, but they're quieter than you'd expect. Filled with a wry, sidewise humor and genuine vulnerability, Bullock carries an ultimately phony movie with something resembling humanity. (Steve Wiecking) Factoria, Grand Alderwood, Metro, Oak Tree, Pacific Place 11

*All About My Mother
Pedro Almodovar's highly acclaimed new film, a mature look at women (with the obligatory drag queen). Broadway Market

American Beauty
Entertaining fluff. Take your typical suburban satire (midlife crisis, bitchy wife, disaffected youth), throw in some admittedly excellent performances, and what you get is an Oscar-winning film, for better or worse. (Andy Spletzer) Aurora Cinema Grill, Metro, Pacific Place 11, Redmond Town Center

American Psycho
Based on the much-reviled book by Bret Easton Ellis, the movie is actually not bad. Really. Set at the height of the Reagan '80s, Psycho deftly satirizes the deadening effect of unchecked corporate wealth and power. In his opening voice-over, Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale) himself recognizes how he's lost the ability to feel or care, moving through life with rituals of exercise, personal grooming, and hanging out at trendy restaurants with the boys from work. Then something inside him snaps, and he discovers the only way for him to feel anything, or at least relieve his tension, is by killing people. (Andy Spletzer) Cinerama, Pacific Place 11, Redmond Town Center, Varsity

*Being John Malkovich
It's the best film of 1999, and it has a monkey in it. Coincidence? We don't think so. Metro, Uptown

*Boys Don't Cry
Bellingham native Hilary Swank deserves every accolade she's received for her portrayal of Brandon Teena, a boy born in a girl's body, who was killed by hateful people who couldn't, or just wouldn't, understand. Broadway Market

To complement (and perhaps complete) Seattle Art Museum's Luis Buñuel series, Consolidated Works' smaller series boasts rarities and shorts. Fall of the House of Usher (Buñuel was assistant director) and Simon of the Desert will be shown. Fri-Sun May 5-7 at 8. Consolidated Works

The Cider House Rules
Based on the John Irving novel, a period piece about life and abortion. Metro, Uptown

The Color of Paradise
The Color of Paradise has much of the patience, sincerity, and simplicity that have made Iranian films so popular in the past few years. It's also one of the most beautifully photographed movies you'll ever see, with green rolling hills and fields of flowers rendered with an almost tactile vibrancy, the colors leaping out as if from an impressionist landscape. Sadly, none of this makes up for the film's tendency to tug at the heartstrings so crudely you'd think it was trying to break them. The story follows a young blind boy who returns to his village after his school year in Tehran. Mohammad is thrilled to use his newly learned skill in Braille to decode the countryside around him. His sisters and grandmother are delighted that their beloved boy has returned. His father, however, sees Mohammad only as a burden to be endured. (Bruce Reid) Seven Gables

According to writer/director Lisa Krueger, a person who is completely committed to marriage is a freakish cultural anomaly. Such a fringe character could be the fascinating center of a film, but Heather Graham's Joline, the ultra-devoted wife, is merely a composite of hairflips and hiphuggers. The ideal of marriage begs for a smart, thorough and even hip re-evaluation. But in this silly film, that ideal is Joline's laughable and grossly naïve deformity. Joline ends up chasing her not-so-faithful husband all the way from NYC to Texas, eventually landing herself in a mental hospital, where she is COMMITTED. Ha, Ha, HA, HA, HA. Get it? (Paula Gilovich) Metro

Everyone knows that dolphins are the smartest animals on the planet; Dolphins proves they're the coolest as well. (Gillian G. Gaar) Pacific Science Center IMAX

East is East
This decent little movie is set in the early '70s, in an English town called Salford. The great Om Puri plays a fanatical father married to a British woman (Linda Basset). They own a small chip shop and a small house, which is packed with seven rebellious kids. With the exception of one boy, all the children are headed one way (toward total assimilation of British culture), and the father the other (preservation of Pakistani values); all that's left is a big showdown in the end. A rather ordinary story, you will agree. But Puri saves the day by doing what he does best: deepening and extending his character's emotional and psychological range. (Charles Mudede) Broadway Market

Oleg Menchikov and Sandrine Bonnaire play Alexei and Marie, a couple whose marriage collapses under the weight of the political oppression they encounter in Odessa during the post-WWII reconstruction of the Soviet Union. While both are appalled by the conditions, only Marie, who is French, seems to recognize the need to flee immediately. Alexei is cautious to the point of impenetrability. The conflict drives both of them to infidelity. But in the tumult of the oppressive social reality, these seeming betrayals play out paradoxically as the ultimate gesture of love. (Rick Levin) Metro

Erin Brockovich
Despite having been directed by indie superstar Steven Soderbergh, Erin Brockovich is just what it is: another big-budget Hollywood film starring Julia Roberts. In fact, because this is a Hollywood film, we suddenly notice aspects of Soderbergh's filmmaking that are harder to detect when he has complete control over his material: namely, how brilliant he is working with supporting actors, most notably men. In this case, it's Aaron Eckhart and Albert Finney. Without this, all you have left is a stupid plot and the dentiglorious spectacle that is Julia Roberts. (Charles Mudede) Guild 45th, Meridian 16, Redmond Town Center

A thoughtful retrospective of the sensitive and satirical European/Spanish filmmaker's works. Viridiana (1961), Buñuel's controversial Palme d'Or winner about a beautiful young woman who prepares to enter a convent, but faces guilt and challenges, will screen this week. Thurs May 11 at 7:30; call 625-8900 for details. Seattle Art Museum

*The Filth & the Fury
Julien Temple (The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle) compiled this portrait of the infamous Sex Pistols, with exclusive interviews with Johnny Rotten, Steve Jones, Paul Cook, Glen Matlock, and of course Sid Vicious. Includes boatloads of unseen live footage, and an amazing capacity to energize even the most cynical viewer. Odds are that if you have preconceptions about the band, they'll at least be tested, especially once you've seen the images of Johnny Rotten serving up slices of cake to needy working class kids on Christmas Day, 1977, or crying over the death of his mate, Sid. Thurs May 4 at 5, 7:15, 9:30. (Sean Nelson) Varsity

Final Destination
Okay, so when a boy has a vision of the plane he's about to take crashing in a big fiery ball, he freaks out and gets kicked off the plane, along with several other people. Then the plane crashes. Spooky. But you can't cheat death, and so the survivors start dying, one by one. That's the point of the movie. You can't cheat death. It never gets any more clever or complex than that. If you must cheat, then sneak into a screening without paying. That'll show 'em. (Andy Spletzer) Pacific Place 11

The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas
Fred, Wilma, Barney, and Betty: the early years. Yabba dabba don't bother. Factoria, Lewis & Clark, Meridian 16, Redmond Town Center

A hodgepodge about time travel; ham-radio enthusiasm; the hazards of firefighting; baseball; mother love; and a father-son tag-team tracking down a nurse-butchering psychopath. This utterly confused film is a perfect example of Hollywood's shameless tendency to pillage the graveyard for the spare parts of its own schmaltzy genres. The result is a Frankenstein monster that bumbles and stumbles across the thin emotional terrain of an Americanized (and therefore totally false) idea of nostalgia and redemption. (Rick Levin) Aurora Cinema Grill, Factoria, Lewis & Clark, Meridian 16, Metro

*Fugazi, DIY, & The Whitney
In conjunction with all the hoopla over the 2000 Whitney Biennial, these two DIY ("do it yourself") videos -- which are part of the Whitney's collection -- will be screened for rock fans and amateur film enthusiasts alike. Instrument chronicles Fugazi's long, determined fight to thrive outside the mainstream music industry; and Nevermind is a lip-synched ode to "Smells Like Teen Spirit." Fri May 5 at 8, $5. 911 Media Arts

*Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai
When he was young, Ghost Dog (Forest Whitaker) was saved from a group of street thugs by Louie (John Tormey), a low-level Mafioso who just happened to be passing by. In thanks, Ghost Dog pledged to serve Louie for the rest of his life, as faithful to him as any ancient samurai was to his master. Director Jim Jarmusch infuses Ghost Dog with the deadpan humor of his earliest films. (Andy Spletzer) Varsity

Russell Crowe strips down to sandals and swords to bust some Roman ass. Reviewed this issue. Cinerama, Factoria, Grand Alderwood, Lewis & Clark, Neptune, Northgate, Redmond Town Center

A bunch of posh journalism students (strike one) get an assignment: Identify the link between news and gossip (strike two). So, naturally, they decide to frame a mutual friend for date rape (yer outta there!). Meridian 16

*High Fidelity
A romantic comedy for guys. John Cusack plays the cynically introspective Rob Gordon, the owner of a small record store who, for various reasons, has shit luck with women. He's a jerk, basically, but he's not altogether clueless about his jerkiness. He struggles and obsesses and makes lists that he thinks define his life, but he's no closer to understanding women than he was in the fifth grade -- which happens to be when he got dumped for the first time. Based on the popular novel of the same name. (Kathleen Wilson) Aurora Cinema Grill, Guild 45th, Harvard Exit

I Dreamed of Africa
Kim Basinger travels to the dark continent, presumably not in search of her roots. City Centre, Factoria, Metro, Oak Tree, Redmond Town Center, Southcenter

*Island of the Sharks
There are SHARKS on the IMAX screen, and they're rickety RAW! Pacific Science Center

Joe Gould's Secret
Joe Gould was a Greenwich Village icon, a self-conscious bohemian who would wander the streets cadging free meals, hitting up old friends for donations, and translating the squawks and quarks of seagulls into English. But Gould was most legendary for his grand, secretive project, a mammoth oral history that he compiled daily. This chronicle of the odd friendship that sprung up between Gould (Ian Holm) and New Yorker scribe Joe Mitchell (Stanley Tucci, who also directed) misses the point of friendship completely. (Bruce Reid)

*Keeping the Faith
Any film that begins with a drunken priest staggering through the streets of New York and tumbling into a garbage pile is automatically fine by me. Edward Norton (who also directed) is the drunky priest and Ben Stiller is a confused rabbi. They love the same girl, a rad chick they hung out with back in the fourth grade. The film is genuinely funny and sweetly romantic as it focuses on all aspects of this not-so-holy trinity. And surprisingly enough, co-star Jenna Elfman doesn't bug. (Kathleen Wilson) Grand Alderwood, Meridian 16, Metro, Oak Tree

The Last September
Set in Ireland between the world wars, The Last September is a romantic portrayal of moth-eaten gentry playing tennis while the Empire crumbles around them. Soft-focus shots of rainy heath and a crumbling manor house establish right away that England will be on the wane for your viewing pleasure. The film doesn't want to take sides between the Irish rebels and the loyalists, prefering instead to use the rebellion as set dressing. The real story here is the end of an era, with every scene detailing some clash between the modern age and a bucolic yesteryear. A young girl comes of age, a gallant soldier loses his innocence, a swarthy rebel broods in an abandoned mill, and a racy socialite smokes cigarettes and bobs her hair. In the end, the real stars of this film are the period costumes and peeling wallpaper. (John Roderick) Harvard Exit

*Lawrence of Arabia
A restored director's cut of David Lean's sweeping epic about a lone British soldier who helps the Arab Bedouins fight against the Turks during WWI. With Peter O'Toole and Sir Alec Guinness; in 70mm. NO PRISONERS! TAKE NO PRISONERS! Fri-Thurs May 5-11 at (Sat-Sun 2), 7. Egyptian

Let My Puppets Come
Gerand Damiano's 1974 X-rated musical puppet sex comedy is sure to delight young and old with its raunchy, pornographic interludes among our fabric friends. Not available on video! Fri-Sat May 5-6 at 11. Grand Illusion

The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg
Aviva Kempner's nostalgic love letter to '30s-'40s Jewish baseball player Hank Greenberg, who overcame prejudice and Jewish stereotypes in the big leagues. A hit at the recent Seattle Jewish Film Festival. Fri-Thurs May 5-11 at (Sat-Sun 1, 3), 5, 7, 9. Varsity Calendar

*Life is to Whistle
An incredibly lush fever dream of a film, Fernando Perez's Life Is to Whistle builds a compelling picture of the possibilities for love and self-transformation in modern-day Havana. Narrator Bebe, an 18-year-old embodiment of happiness, takes us in and out of the lives of three orphans, all of whom suffer complicated relationships to tradition and surrogate families. Manipulating reality with a light touch, Bebe becomes the director's stand-in, arguing for art's ability to help Cuba confront its present-day political and social conditions. Metaphors aside, Whistle is an excellent wry comedy, set to the music of Bola de Nieve and Benny More. Through Thurs May 11 at (Sat-Sun 3), 5, 7, 9. (Tom Spurgeon) Grand Illusion

Love and Basketball
Boy meets girl. Boy plays hoops with girl. Girl takes boy to hole. Boy is Omar Epps. Girl is Sanaa Lathan. Lewis & Clark

In a cinematically fun package, Paul Thomas Anderson weaves together the story of eight generic characters. (Andy Spletzer) Crest

The Ninth Gate
Johnny Depp, playing a dealer of antique books, gets involved in a mission to open the ninth gate of hell, thus springing Satan. Crest

Piece d'Identite (I.D.)
Producer/director Mweze Ngangura's Congo-Belgium film wraps up the New African Cinema series in Volunteer Park. Thurs May 4 at 6:30, $7. Seattle Asian Art Museum

Pitch Black
A small crew is stranded on a desert planet, and they must escape before the eclipse brings out all the nasty monsters that are afraid of the light. Admiral

All filmed before the oppressive, uptight Production Code of the '30s, these vintage movies have plenty of sex, violence, bootlegging, drugs, and "explicit behavior." This weekend, it's a new 35mm print of Guilty Generation (1931), Rowland E. Lee's gangster version of Romeo and Juliet, with plenty of thrilling gunfights and illegal boozing. Sat-Sun May 6-7 at noon. Grand Illusion

The Northwest Alliance for Psychoanalytic Study's monthly film series -- which pays tribute to solid mental health by exploring how we relate and respond to aesthetics -- ends this week with Gabriel Axel's gorgeous, fable-esque Babette's Feast, which adoringly documents a lavish feast held in a cold, fanatically religious village. Fri May 5 at 7, $7; call 443-1831 for details. Seattle Art Museum

Return to Me
A guy (David Duchovny) falls for a girl (Minnie Driver) who has received his dead wife's heart in a transplant. No, really. Grand Alderwood, Oak Tree, Pacific Place 11

The Road to El Dorado
The Road to El Dorado is very adventurous and also very funny. (Sam Lachow) Grand Alderwood, Lewis & Clark, Meridian 16, Redmond Town Center

Rules of Engagement
When a movie is titled Rules of Engagement, I'm there. Too bad this one implodes like a giant star after a promising start. The performances of Samuel L. Jackson, Tommy Lee Jones, Blair Underwood, Guy Pearce, and Anne Archer are sucked into the resulting black hole. In the end, we are left with nothing -- absolutely nothing. (Charles Mudede) Aurora Cinema Grill, Factoria, Meridian 16

Scream 3
The final chapter in the trilogy doesn't change the rules or break any new ground. What it lacks in scares, it makes up for with laughs. It's only a matter of time before Wes Craven answers his true calling: Hollywood comedies. (Andy Spletzer) Meridian 16

Indie film studio the Shooting Gallery showcases movies that were well-received at various international film festivals, but never got a proper theatrical release. Adrenaline Drive, Shinobu Yaguchi's adventure flick in which a nerdy car rental clerk gets in a car wreck with menacing Japanese gangsters, is in the current spotlight. See Movie Times for details. Uptown

Peter Calvin's "experimental dramatic feature" about four L.A. hipsters with various sleep disorders. Calvin will attend this screening! Wed May 10 at 5:30, 7:30, 9:30. Reviewed this issue. Little Theatre

Through Their Eyes
Human rights photojournalist Peter Fryer's experiences with children in Palestinian refugee camps are documented in Mae Masri's Children of Shatila. Fryer will be on hand to conduct his slide show and give a brief lecture about his work in refugee camps in Lebanon. Thurs May 11 at 8, $5. 911 Media Arts

*Time Code
The screen is cut into quadrants. Four films on one screen. Four digital video cameras recording each film in a single, continuous take. No editing. Story takes place in Hollywood; is about Hollywood. No script. Actors are given characters and general plot points they have to hit by certain times. Cast wears synchronized digital watches. Fortunately, the experiment is founded on a formidable story -- the four films unfolding simultaneously onscreen are all facets of one large narrative, dealing with the quotidian emotional reality of showbiz folk. (Paula Gilovich) Broadway Market

What's long, round, and full of seamen? Why, it's a submarine movie! It's WWII, and Matthew McConaughey has to steal some decoding machine from the Nazis. Luckily, he's got Bill Paxton, Harvey Keitel, and Jon Bon Jovi on his side. Factoria, Grand Alderwood, Metro, Oak Tree, Pacific Place 11

Up at the Villa
Sean Penn and Kristin Scott Thomas star as ill-fated lovers in the newest entry in the sex-leads-to-tragedy-leads-to-a-woman's-self-knowledge genre. The fine supporting cast includes Anne Bancroft, Derek Jacobi, the great Sir James Fox, Jeremy Davies, and the dappled flora of Tuscany. Seven Gables, Uptown

The Virgin Suicides
Sofia Coppola's directorial debut is a dreamy disquisition on the mythic power of the male gaze, as visited on five sun-kissed suburban sisters whose inability to live up to the ideals imposed on them by a neighborhood full of swooning sensi-boys wrecks the lives of all involved. Based on Jeffrey Eugenides' novel. Reviewed this issue. Broadway Market, Metro

Where the Heart Is
Natalie Portman stars in this heartwarming tale of trashy poor people, one of whom will most likely be dying of some disease or giving birth to a baby of some kind before all is said and done. Factoria, Lewis & Clark, Metro, Oak Tree, Pacific Place 11, Redmond Town Center

Who the Hell is Juliette?
Filmed alternately in Cuba, Mexico, and the U.S., this playful essay takes off from the coincidence of a Cuban teenager (Yuliet Ortega) having appeared in a music video with Mexican fashion model Fabiola Quiroz. Interviewing both women and their respective families, director Carlos Marcovich creates a rambling portrait of, well, just about everything that crosses his mind. Budding sexuality, religion, growing up without a father (Quiroz's died when she was still a child; Ortega's hasn't contacted her since he ran off to America), acting, and, of course, making a movie. The only flaw is that Marcovich is too clever for his own good: His deliberate staging and razor-sharp editing invariably reveal each person to be in someway deluded or misinformed. Which no doubt is true of all of us; but framed like this, with the all-knowing film director exposing his misguided subjects, it comes off as arrogant and superior. A bad aftertaste for such a lively little film. Thurs-Sun May 4-7 at 5:30, 7:30, 9:30. (Bruce Reid) Little Theatre

Winter Sleepers
Winter Sleepers is beautifully filmed and at times mordantly funny, but never overcomes Run Lola Run director Tom Tykwer's simplistic overlay of narrative strategies. (Tom Spurgeon) Broadway Market

Wonder Boys
Any film that can make an audience stomach Michael Douglas is a minor accomplishment. Curtis Hanson's film does more than that. In fact it's rather good. (Steve Wiecking) Crest