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"The Limey," "Being John Malkovich," "Dogma," "Pokémon" and on video "South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut"

Quick Flicks

!B! "The Limey"
!B! "Being John Malkovich"
!B! "Dogma"
!B! "Pokémon"
!B! Now on Video: "South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut"

"The Limey" - Steven Soderbergh has crafted a mesmerizing yet simple tale of revenge. With changes of perspective reminiscent of "Rashomon," Soderbergh flashes back, forward and back again giving us new perspectives on the movie's pivotal scene.

At the heart of this dark tale is Terence Stamp, playing the "limey" of the title. A fish-out-of-water, he has come to America to avenge the death of his daughter at the hands of some Los Angeles gangsters. His obsessed manhunt leads him closer and closer to record producer Peter Fonda, who may know the truth of what happened. It's great fun watching these two '60s acting icons display their now-mature and wholly opposite talents.

"Being John Malkovich" - For his feature-film debut, music video director Spike Jonze creates a bizarre and brilliant fantasy. All about an angst-filled puppeteer (John Cusack) and a dour opportunist (Catherine Keener) who find a portal into actor John Malkovich's brain, this surreal tale spins on society's current consuming passion — celebrity. The movie would have fallen flat if Malkovich had not agreed to play himself. "Being John Malkovich" is the weirdest trip you'll take this year.

"Dogma" - For his third big-screen effort, cult-fave writer-director Kevin Smith offers up this religious satire. Matt Damon and Ben Affleck are two fallen angels who discover a loophole in church dogma which allows them to reenter heaven. But working their way through that loophole would also negate the existence of a certain revered supreme being. As the two make their way from Wisconsin to New Jersey, they become avenging angels as they decide to rid the earth of sinners.

As Smith showed in both "Clerks" and the far better "Chasing Amy," he is a wordsmith to champion. As a director, however, he's often less than divinely inspired. I thoroughly enjoyed "Dogma," even though it could have used a little more judicious editing. While it's being damned in some circles as blasphemous, I found it to be the opposite. One of the things I likes least about "Dogma" is its self-piety.

"Pokémon" - What can I say? The 3- to 10-year-old set will love this big-screen version of their favorite TV show. I mean LOVE it. But parents — YIKES! — sitting through this 70-minute merchandising scheme is like having a front seat in some rainbow-colored hell.

Now on Video "South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut" - If you missed this raucously funny and profane adult musical cartoon when it was originally released, now's the time to see all the deliciously offensive material in the privacy of your own home.

In this big-screen tale, those foul-mouthed and precocious third-graders from South Park Elementary find themselves battling for First Amendment rights. Guaranteed to offend just about everyone at some point, "South Park" is a raunchy riot. Not a single contemporary sacred cow goes unskewered.

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