August 6, 2008

Film Openings for the Week

By San Jose Mercury News, Calif.

Aug. 6--Opened Wednesday

"Bottle Shock" (PG-13): A novice Napa vintner and a British expatriate trying to boost business at his floundering Paris wine shop combine to make history with the perfect California chardonnay. Based on a true story -- and shot on location in Northern California wine country -- the film has a strong cast headed by Bill Pullman and Alan Rickman.

"Pineapple Express" (R): The folks behind the hit "Superbad" are back with an action-comedy starring Seth Rogen and James Franco as two stoners on the run from a dangerous drug lord and a crooked cop. David Gordon Green from "Superbad" directs.

"Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2" (PG-13): Amber Tamblyn, America Ferrera, Blake Lively and Alexis Bledel are all back in this sequel to the 2005 hit based on the popular series of teen novels. Now, the four friends are all in college, but they're still sharing those magic pants.

Opening Friday

"Boy A" (R): After spending most of his youth in prison for a brutal murder, an ex-convict (Andrew Garfield) re-enters society and tries to live a normal life. San Francisco and Berkeley only.

"Elegy" (R): Director Isabel Coixet explores the relationship between a charismatic college professor (Ben Kingsley) and a young woman (Penelope Cruz) whose beauty and intensity completely change the professor's life. San Francisco


"Frozen River" (R): Melissa Leo stars as a single mom driven to join a smuggling operation along the Canadian border. The film, directed by Courtney Hunt, was a top prize winner at the Sundance Film Festival. South Bay opening next Friday.

"Hell Ride" (R): A bloody homage to the Sergio Leone spaghetti western set in the world of biker gangs, with a heaping helping of testosterone-fueled chopper action thrown into the mix. Larry Bishop -- son of comedian Joey Bishop -- directs, writes and co-stars.

"Man on Wire" (PG-13): A critically acclaimed documentary on young Frenchman Philippe Petit who walked a tightrope between the towers of the World Trade Center. Another Sundance Film Festival winner.

"To the Limit" (NR): Two German brothers scale the 1,000-foot vertical "nose" of El Capitan in Yosemite in this award-winning documentary. San Francisco only.

Opening next Wednesday

"Tropic Thunder" (R): Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey Jr. star as a trio of actors whose filming experience in Southeast Asia gets a little too real as they must become as tough as the characters they play to get out of a crisis. Stiller is also director and co-writer.


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