Movies Released August 14, 2009

Friday, August 14

108 mins

The Time Traveler's Wife

The love story focuses on a couple in which the man has a genetic disorder known as "chrono-impairment," a condition that causes him to involuntarily travel through time. Jeremy Leven wrote the adaptation.
Eric Bana, Ron Livingston, Stephen Tobolowsky, Brad Pitt, Robert Schwentke, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Leven, Nick Wechsler
Drama Fantasy Romance Sci-Fi
112 mins

District 9

Over twenty years ago, aliens made first contact with Earth. Humans waited for the hostile attack, or the giant advances in technology. Neither came. Instead, the aliens were refugees, the last survivors of their home world. The creatures were set up in a makeshift home in South Africa’s District 9 as the world’s nations argued over what to do with them.

Now, patience over the alien situation has run out. Control over the aliens has been contracted out to Multi-National United (MNU), a private company uninterested in the aliens’ welfare – they will receive tremendous profits if they can make the aliens’ awesome weaponry work. So far, they have failed; activation of the weaponry requires alien DNA.

The tension between the aliens and the humans comes to a head when an MNU field operative, Wikus van der Merwe (Sharlto Copley), contracts a mysterious virus that begins changing his DNA. Wikus quickly becomes the most hunted man in the world, as well as the most valuable – he is the key to unlocking the secrets of alien technology. Ostracized and friendless, there is only one place left for him to hide: District 9.
Sharlto Copley, Bill Block, Neill Blomkamp, Ken Kamins, Peter Jackson, Carolynne Cunningham, Jason Cope, Robert Hobbs
Drama Fantasy Sci-Fi
89 mins

The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard

Who is Don Ready? Salesman? Lover? Song Stylist? Semi-professional dolphin trainer? Ready is all of the above, except for a dolphin trainer. When he's asked to help save an ailing local car dealership from bankruptcy, Ready and his ragtag crew descend on the town of Temecula like a pack of coyotes on a basket full of burgers. Selling, drinking, selling and going to strip clubs is their stock and trade. And they do it well. What Don doesn't expect is to fall in love and find his soul (cue heartfelt piano). "The Goods: The Don Ready Story" stars Emmy award-winning actor Jeremy Piven ("The Kingdom," "Entourage") and Ving Rhames ("I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry," "Mission: Impossible III"). The film is the first production from Will Ferrell and Adam McKay's Gary Sanchez Productions, directed by Neal Brennan, creator of the hugely successful Comedy Central hit, "Chappelle's Show."
Jeremy Piven, Will Ferrell, Adam McKay, Kevin Messick, Andy Stock, James Brolin, Neal Brennan, Chris Henchy
Comedy
111 mins

Bandslam

Disney Channel superstars Vanessa Anne Hudgens ("High School Musical 1 & 2," "High School Musical 3") and Alyson Michalka ("Phil of the Future," pop duo Aly and AJ) join Gaelan Connell ("Chocolat"), Scott Porter ("Speed Racer") and Lisa Kudrow ("Friends") in the music-driven comedy "Bandslam." When gifted singer-songwriter Charlotte Banks (Michalka) asks new kid in town Will Burton (Connell) to manage her fledgling rock band, she appears to have just one goal in mind: go head-to-head against her egotistical musician ex-boyfriend, Ben (Porter), at the biggest event of the year, a battle of the bands.

Against all odds, their band develops a sound all its own with a real shot at success in the contest. Meanwhile, romance brews between Will and Sam (Hudgens), who plays a mean guitar and has a voice to die for. When disaster strikes, it's time for the band to make a choice: Do they admit defeat, or face the music and stand up for what they believe in?
Todd Graff, Vanessa Hudgens, Lisa Kudrow, Tim Jo, Scott Porter, Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas, Ron Schmidt, Marisa Yeres
Drama Comedy Teen Music
100 mins

Ponyo

"Ponyo" is the latest tour de force from animation master Hayao Miyazaki and his Academy Award® winning Studio Ghibli. Perfect for audiences of all ages, "Ponyo" is a return to the innocent pleasures of My Neighbor Totoro, with dazzling and entirely hand-drawn visuals that start simply and erupt into fluid, cascading symphonies of color. The story centers on the loving relationship between Sosuke, a five-year-old boy, and a magical goldfish named Ponyo, the rambunctious young daughter of a sorcerer father and a sea-goddess mother. After a chance encounter, Ponyo yearns to become a human so she can be with Sosuke. As to be expected with Miyazaki, the film is awash in pure unbridled imagination and visual wonder-but it is the tender warmth, humor, and devotion of Ponyo and Sosuke that form the emotional heart of this film. In English - featuring the voices of Matt Damon, Cate Blanchett, Tina Fey, Liam Neeson, Lily Tomlin, Noah Cyrus and Frankie Jonas.
Matt Damon, Liam Neeson, Kathleen Kennedy, Hayao Miyazaki, Frank Marshall, Steve Alpert, Cate Blanchett, Betty White
Adventure Animation
97 mins

Spread

"Spread" is a fresh, funny, and racy look at the trials and tribulations of sleeping your way to a life of privilege in Los Angeles. Comic and karmic, the film is an “immorality tale” about a gorgeous guy who gives women what they want in order to live exactly as he likes.

In "Spread", Nikki (Ashton Kutcher) isn’t a gigolo. He’s a sexual grifter, a fun-loving, freeloading hipster who understands his greatest assets are his looks and sexual prowess, which he uses to charm his way into the hearts of the city’s richest women and enjoy their lifestyle. Nikki gets a free place to live, fantastic gifts, A-list access, and plenty of sex. The women get to feel young, beautiful… and utterly fulfilled in the bedroom. It’s a mutually beneficial set-up.

Nikki’s latest conquest is Samantha (Anne Heche), a stunning middle-aged lawyer who gives him more than he’s ever had before. But then he meets a gorgeous waitress his own age named Heather (Margarita Levieva). She comes to visit Nikki at Samantha’s house while Samantha is out of town, sees what an incredible place it is… and comes to the mistaken conclusion it’s his. Unbeknownst to Nikki, Heather lives by playing the same game.

When Samantha comes home, she discovers Nikki’s infidelity and he’s put out on the street. With nowhere else to turn, Nikki pulls out all the stops to win Heather over and they begin to form their own kind of bond. Sexually charged by a game of one-upsmanship, each shows the other their best grifts, and they unexpectedly begin falling in love – the one thing they can’t do in the life they lead. Soon, the truth of their unfolding relationship forces a choice between love and money, and Nikki has to decide whether he can live on his own once and for all in the hopes of finding something real.
Peter Morgan, David MacKenzie, Jason Dean Hall, Maria Conchita Alonso, Aaron Kaufman, Jason Goldberg, Ashton Kutcher, Anne Heche
Comedy
97 mins

It Might Get Loud

The electric guitar has dominated popular music for the last half century. Anyone who has ever plugged into an amp understands its power. So does the average stadium crowd. But if you have too much exposure to amateurs, you might forget the incredible range of expression that the creation pioneered by Les Paul can achieve in the hands of masters.

Director Davis Guggenheim, well-known for his Academy Award-winning documentary "An Inconvenient Truth", deepens our appreciation for going electric by bringing together three virtuosos from different generations: Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, The Edge of U2 and Jack White of The White Stripes. "It Might Get Loud" weaves together their stories to reveal how each of them developed a unique sound.

Unlike rock 'n' roll documentaries that focus on backstage drama, this one concentrates on the music, giving us intimate access to the creative process. Each guitarist describes his own musical rebellion: Page against the saccharine pop of the sixties; The Edge against the self-indulgent solos of the seventies; White against the soulless bass machines of the eighties. The film also travels to the locations that left a mark on each player. Page visits the stone halls of Headley Grange where "Stairway to Heaven" was composed. In Dublin, The Edge pulls out the original four-track rehearsals of "Where the Streets Have No Name." And in Tennessee, White describes being inspired by the raw style of bluesman Son House. What's more, we see each musician play new work that has yet to be released.

The trio comes together for a jam session, during which they demonstrate their varying tastes in gear, from Page's double-neck guitar to The Edge's array of accessory pedals to White's cheap plastic instrument. Contrary to the stereotype that rock 'n' rollers are sullen and guarded, these three display an infectious joy when discussing their craft. Anyone who has ever played air guitar along with a Zeppelin song will be thrilled watching Page mimic the licks of one of his own favourites, Link Wray's "Rumble."

You don't need to be an aficionado to enjoy the pleasure of this company. This film might not affect how you play, but it will change how you listen.
Carson Hood, Thomas Tull, Davis Guggenheim, Peter Afterman, Lesley Chilcott, Jack White, The Edge, Jimmy Page
Documentary Music

Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders

In the war-zones of Liberia and Congo, four volunteers with Doctors Without Borders struggle to provide emergency medical care under extreme conditions. With different levels of experience, each volunteer must find their own way to face the challenges, the tough choices, and the limits of their idealism.
Sarah E. Johnson, Mark N. Hopkins, Naisola Grimwood, Daniel Holton-Roth, Erika Bertin, Molly Conners, Geralyn White Dreyfous, Mark Jonathan Harris
Documentary
New York / Los Angeles
1 / 5
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Friday, August 14