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Published: Wednesday, 10/27/2010

Movies currently showing: 10-28

Summaries are condensed from Blade reviews and reflect the theater schedule starting tomorrow. Films are rated on a scale of 5 stars (best) to Bomb (worst). The reviewer's name, movie running time, and abbreviations of the theaters where the movie is playing are at the end of each summary.

Eat Pray Love. Ryan Murphy, creator of TV's Glee and Nip/Tuck, directs this adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert's memoir about a woman (Julia Roberts) who realizes she is unfulfilled, divorces her husband, and goes on a spiritual journey around the world. Although the film is little more than a shallow travelogue, the supporting cast is cute, and itis great to see Roberts in a light film again. PG-13 *** 133 min. (Wire review) (MIT)

Hereafter. Clint Eastwood directs a drama about an American psychic (Matt Damon), a French TV news reporter (Cecile de France), and a London schoolboy (George McLaren) whose lives cross after they're touched by death. Eastwood avoids gimmicks and simply tells a story, and the result is a sympathetic and all-encompassing understanding of the pain and grandeur of life. It's his best work yet. PG-13 ***** 129 minutes. (Wire review) (FP, FT, LC)

Inception. Leonardo DiCaprio plays a thief capable of plucking secret information from people's dreams -- a knack that comes in handy in the cut-throat corporate world. But there are risks: The deeper into a dream Cobb goes, the harder it is to get out. It's a terrific testament to director Christopher Nolan how masterfully everything comes together in a wild half-hour conclusion that will bend your mind and stop your heart. PG-13 ***** 142 min. (Baird) (MIT)

Jackass 3-D. Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, Steve-O, and the rest of the gang return for more gross-out, wince-inducing stunts, only this time the boogers and vomit are in your face. What was cute when these guys were comic losers can seem a little desperate now. The peals of laughter seem forced and the fixation on feces is infantile. R 1. * 1/2 94 min. (FP, FT, LC)

Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'hoole. An animated film about an owlet that's kidnapped and taken to an orphanage, where it is trained to become a warrior. Based on the novels of Kathryn Lasky, the film is gorgeously animated, occasionally exciting, and not at all dumbed down into the pap that generally passes for family fare. PG *** 100 min. 90 minutes. (Wire review) (FP, FT)

Life As We Know It. Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel co-star as a romantically incompatible couple who must to learn to tolerate each other after fate forces them to raise their goddaughter together. Uneven and sloppily sentimental, there are a couple of good tear-jerking moments and decent laughs along with the projectile vometing and diaper jokes. PG-13 ** 1/2 112 min. (Wire review) (FP, FT, LC)

My Soul to Take. Wes Craven (A Nightmare on Elm Street) writes and directs this thriller about a serial killer stalk the teens of a small town. An incoherent fiasco, it's nothing more than a series of sketches and riffs from earlier works. R * 107 minutes. (Wire review) (FP)

Paranormal Activity 2. Writer-director Oren Peli revisits the same Southern California area of his first film for another haunted house tale. A mostly unknown cast appears fairly natural, but as the demon slowly ratchets up the horror, the film devolves into predictability and stereotypes. R ** 91 minutes. (FP, FT, LC)

Red. Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, John Malkovich, and Helen Mirren star as a team of retired CIA agents targeted and framed for murder by their former bosses. The plot is strictly pedestrian, but the A-list cast lifts the action flick to B-movie fun. PG-13 *** 111 min. (Baird) (FP, FT, LC)

Secretariat. Diane Lane stars in this fact-based story of Penny Chenery, a housewife who in 1973 took over her father's racing stables and, with the help of a trainer (John Malkovich), produced the first Triple Crown winner in 25 years. Though well acted, the tale teeters between pleasantly generic and rank manipulation. PG ** 116 min. (Wire review) (FP, FT, LC)

The Social Network. Written by Aaron Sorkin and directed by David Fincher, this powerful drama about the creation of Facebook details innocence lost, friendships destroyed, greed, the power of exclusivity, sex, drugs, and the primal human need to fit in. Decades from now, the movie will exist as one of those rare films that define a point in history. PG-13 ***** 120 min. (Baird) (FP, FT, LC)

The Town. Ben Affleck offers a strong, mature performance as a bank robber who wants to go straight, while friends and circumstances conspire otherwise. Jon Hamm is the FBI special agent who wants to nab Affleck and his bank-robbing team, and Rebecca Hall is the woman Affleck has fallen in love with. Despite a strong cast and terrific direction by Affleck, the film amounts to a routine crime thriller. R *** 123 min. (Baird) (FP, FT)

Toy Story 3. Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen), Woody (Tom Hanks), and the rest of the iconic Toy Story gang must adapt to life in a day-care center after their previous owner grows up and goes away to college. Although occasionally brilliant, the Pixar film sacrifices freshness for a comfortable familiarity. G *** 1/2 103 min. (Baird) (MIT)

Waiting for Superman. Documentarian Davis Guggenheim tackles U.S. public education, offering a lot of statistics and experts to break down what went wrong with the system and how to fix it. What's noticeably absent in this otherwise fine documentary, though, is the responsibility that parents and students share in the education process. PG-13 *** 110 min. (Baird) (LC)



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