By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
But Forever in My Mind
Another sweet growing-up Euromovie, this time Italian and chin-deep in soured politics and '60s whiplash.
Enemy at the Gates
A super epic (one of the most expensive made in Europe) about a master sniper at the Battle of Stalingrad, played by Jude Law. Directed with his ambitious anonymity by Jean-Jacques Annaud, and featuring Joseph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz, Eva Mattes, and Bob Hoskins as Khrushchev.
O Brother, Where Art Thou?
The Coens have their promiscuous, Rube Goldberg way with Depression-era screwball, casting George Clooney, John Turturro, and Tim Blake Nelson as Stooge-ish hoboes lost in a musical '30s never-never South. If it's not one of the year's reigning shit-eating-grin movies, it's not for lack of trying.
State and Main
A parasitic film crew descends on a yokel town in David Mamet's anti-Hollywood farce, which is every bit as smug and vapid as his imagined targets.
Wes Craven Presents: Dracula 2000
We can never have enough movie versions of this hoary talehow could you lay it to rest until Jonny Lee Miller has had a chance to play the Count? Craven is only one of five executive producers; the man in the hot seat is Patrick Lussier, editor of both Scream 2 and Scream 3.
An Everlasting Piece
The increasingly uninteresting Gus Van Sant has apparently called this unlikely-mentor movie in which a reclusive novelist (Sean Connery) bonds with a black teen athlete "the evil twin of Good Will Hunting." Sounds more like the inbred cousin of Smoke.
The unnecessary onslaught of beauty pageant/cheerleader satires rolls on: Sandra Bullock's FBI agent goes undercover at the Miss New Jersey contest.
Baz Luhrmann's doubtlessly garish musical is not a remake of John Huston's biopic, but it is set in fin-de-siècle Montmartrewhere poet Ewan McGregor falls for courtesan Nicole Kidmanand (in a stroke of genius or madness) features John Leguizamo as Toulouse-Lautrec.
Roland Joffé's Cannes opener about Louis XIV's chef promises to be pretty vacant. Gérard Depardieu in the title role, with Julian Sands as the king and Uma Thurman as his mistress. Tom Stoppard cowrote, which means cute literary references to tickle the freshmen.
Cate Blanchett portrays a telepathic woman embroiled in a murder mystery in backwoods Arkansas for Sam Raimi and cowriter/trailer titan Billy Bob Thornton. Keanu Reeves plays a suspect; Hilary Swank, again enduring the caprices of redneck mastodons, is his battered wife.
Proof of Life
The Tailor of Panama
Buying the Cow
Commitment phobia rom-com. Etc.
Scarily prolific Brit Michael Winterbottom tosses off yet another one. Peter Mullan and Sarah Polley star in this Faustian Yukon gold-rush drama; Nastassja Kinski and Milla Jovovich try not to ruin too many takes.
Can't wait for this: Ed Harris directs and plays Jackson P., with Val Kilmer as de Kooning, Marcia Gay Harden as Lee Krasner, and Jeffrey Tambor as Clement Greenberg! The casting had to be more fun than the movie, and if this does train-wreck, it'll be a fiery mess going down.
John Dahl's mid-'90s neo-noirs haven't aged well, but he's good with actors (Gretchen Mol notwith-standing), and this romance-driven, psychodrama-spiked road movie has both welcome comic possibilities and Steve Zahn going for it.
This is Spinal TapSeptember 8;
The Times of Harvey MilkSeptember 15;House of Wax(in 3-D) September 22;The Exorcist (director's cut with extra scenes) September 22;Two-Lane BlacktopSeptember 29;All About Eve October 6;Diary of a Chambermaid(Luis Buñuel) October 13;Wonder Boys October 20;Billy Liar (John Schlesinger) November 17;A Hard Day's NightDecember 1;Miss Sadie Thompson (Rita Hayworth in 3-D!) December 22;The Mystery of Picasso(Henri-Georges Clouzot) December 29;2001: A Space OdysseyDecember 31
Festivals and Retros
'RIDE LONESOME: A BUDD BOETTICHER RETROSPECTIVE'
September 16-October 1
American Museum of the Moving Image, 35th Avenue at 36th Street, Queens, 718-784-0077
An assortment of films by America's working-class auteur. Includes Boetticher's seminal westerns with Randolph Scott and a rare screening of Arruza, the 1962 portrait of matador Carlos Arruza that all but ruined the director. Boetticher will attend the October 1 screenings.