THURSDAY, DEC 25
FRIDAY, DEC 26
A pair of Wild West gunslingers (Viggo Mortensen and Ed Harris) lock horns with an evil land baron (Jeremy Irons) until a woman comes between them. Hmmm, wonder if there’s going to be a climactic shootout?
Will Smith plays an IRS agent who goes in search of redemption (gee, what guilt could an IRS agent possibly be carrying?) and crosses paths with seven strangers. Can he resist the temptation to audit them?
Clint Eastwood stretches his acting chops as a crusty, hardheaded old Korean War veteran who loves his car and little else. Until, that is, a young man enters his life and gives him a new purpose.
SATURDAY, DEC 27
High School Musical 3: Senior Year
Something for the preteens. The third big screen incarnation of Disney’s latest cash cow finds the well-coiffed teens up to their usual non-threatening shenanigans. Who’s taking bets on High School Musical 4: The College Years?
The Tale of Despereaux
An animated mouse with big ears and even bigger dreams goes on a swashbuckling adventure. Matthew Broderick, Emma Watson and Sigourney Weaver lend their voices.
Last Chance Harvey
A down-on-his-luck American jingle writer (Dustin Hoffman) meets a caustic British workaholic (Emma Thompson) at the airport bar, and they wind up sharing more than drinks.
A look into the world of organized crime in Italy, minus the badda bing clichés. Based on the nonfiction book by Roberto Saviano, the backlash from which forced the author into hiding. In Italian with English subtitles.
SUNDAY, DEC 28
Keira Knightley straps on yet another corset to play yet another impetuous young royal who defies the conventions of her time and outwits an endless array of dim aristocratic suitors. Ralph Fiennes costars.
Vicky Christina Barcelona
Woody Allen’s latest follows two American women (Vicky and Christina) as they travel to a European city (guess which one) and stumble into a love triangle (or actually, a love square.) Scarlett Johansson, Rebecca Hall, Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz share the witty banter.
An iron-jawed nun (Meryl Streep) and a liberal priest (Philip Seymour Hoffman) butt heads when she suspects him of having an inappropriate relationship with a young male student. Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play.
MONDAY, DEC 29
In 1920s Los Angeles, a woman (Angelina Jolie) loses her son. He returns months later, but something isn’t quite right and a political storm ensues. Based on actual events.
Nothing But the Truth
A D.C. reporter is tossed in jail for refusing to name a source, while a CIA agent’s identity is revealed and questions about justice and freedom of the press arise. Entirely fictional, of course.
Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet star in a film that isn’t about a giant cruise ship hitting an iceberg, but rather a pair of suburbanites trying to break the bonds of their mundane existence. Sam Mendes, who did this before with American Beauty, directs.
TUESDAY, DEC 30
An economics professor in crisis (there’s a shock) finds new inspiration after a chance encounter in the Big Apple.
Mickey Rourke attempts another career ressurection, this time playing a washed-up professional wrestler who tries to beat the odds and his own demons. It’s like Rocky, minus the gloves and plus some extra angst.
See review, pg. 18.
DECEMBER 31 & JAN 1-2
SATURDAY, JAN 3
The Song of Sparrows
An Iranian ostrich farmer who gets fired after a bird escapes on his watch (hate when that happens) discovers a new life in the big city. In Persian with English subtitles.
Oil companies, the auto industry and the government take turns playing the villain while alternative energy rides in on a fuel-efficient white horse in this enviro prop-doc.
Disparate stories are woven together in this trippy claymation romp, with the connecting thread a booklet that promises to reveal the meaning of life for the low, low price of…
Tickets: $8-$12; Four-film pass: $40. For more info visit www.mauifilmfestival.com or call 572-3456. All films screen at the Castle Theater, located at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center, One Cameron Way, Kahului.