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[New Movie Releases]

The Pacifier (2005) ˜ You can‚t be an action hero forever, at least not if you’re Vin Diesel. In a crossover role similar to Arnie‚s work in Kindergarten Cop, Diesel plays a disgraced Navy Seal with a new assignment. He is charged with the care of five children of a recently deceased government scientist whose top secret experiment is still in their house. A lighthearted plot and some laugh-out-loud awkwardness that is inevitable when you get a meat head around kids make this film worthy of a rainy afternoon.

Hitch (2005) ˆ If you watch this film with your girlfriend, prepare to have her nodding her head as the goofy guys in this film make some of the same blunders that dot your past. Full of hilarious advice for men trying to woo the woman of their dreams, this film could be considered instructional for the relationship-challenged. If nothing else, Will Smith makes a charming „date doctor‰ with a thing or two to learn about love himself …

Million Dollar Baby (2004) ˜ Critically acclaimed as one of the finest films Clint Eastwood has ever made, this film took home four Oscars, a Golden Globe and a gaggle of other awards. Hillary Swank portrays Maggie Fitzgerald, a 31-year-old amateur boxer looking for guidance from Frankie Dunn (Eastwood), a respected coach who wants nothing to do with a female boxer. This film confirms Swank as an actress capable of portraying a strong protagonist.

Coach Carter (2005) ˜ From the director of Save the Last Dance, this film follows the same school of hard knocks philosophy of teaching that have been seen in Dangerous Minds and even Lean On Me. Samuel L. Jackson plays the controversial coach who benches his entire undefeated team because of their poor academic performance. The plot has been done, but the acting is nothing less than what you‚d expect from Jackson.

National Treasure (2004) ˜ It‚s hard to trick audiences these days ˜ we’ve seen it all and it’s hard to even impress us. National Treasure breathes some fresh air into the cliffhanger genre. With a charming plot full of intelligent comedy, romance and action/adventure, Nicholas Cage plays a treasure hunter looking for a priceless mythical fortune passed down through the ages fighting against his former employer in an good guy versus bad guy race. This flick will have you wondering about your dollar bills and what exactly is on the back of historical documents.

Finding Neverland (2004) ˜A charming and imaginative story of the friendship between a writer and the family who inspired him to write Peter Pan. Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet compliment each other beautifully in this film, which is sure to appeal to lovers of fairy tales and fantasy. The children in this film are incredible actors, and the film brought home an much-deserved Oscar.

Are We There Yet? (2005) ˜This isn’t really a recommendation—it’s a warning. Beware this movie or you may never want to have children. Or at least you won’t want to drive someone else’s kids 350 miles on a road trip from the dark side. This film attempts to team Ice Cube up with some misfit kids in the same way that Vin Diesel is paired up in The Pacifier, but is even less funny. Don’t heed my advice, and you may be asking, “Is it over yet?”

—MANDY LANGSTON

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