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Movies today

May 02, 2008

Capsules by Michael Sragow or Chris Kaltenbach, unless noted. Full reviews are at baltimoresun.com/movies.

Baby Mama -- Tina Fey inhabits what should be her comfort zone as a career woman who decides to use a surrogate to have a baby and ends up with raucous, declasse Amy Poehler. As the movie makes its way toward a denouement that leaves everyone happy-ever-after, the film feels emptier than your typical successful high-concept comedy. Part of the problem is the center will not hold: The TV stars are outmatched by a strong supporting cast (Will Forte, Greg Kinnear, Maura Tierney, Holland Taylor, Steve Martin, Sigourney Weaver and more). (M.S.) PG-13 96 minutes C

Drillbit Taylor -- Owen Wilson is Drillbit, a homeless, good-natured opportunist who answers an ad from three kids looking for protection from the high school bully. The movie strains - for laughs, for credibility, for continuity. But it also has a made-to-order audience in the millions of us who identify with the geeky outcasts in high school. (C.K.) PG-13 102 minutes C-

The Forbidden Kingdom -- A South Boston kung-fu fan (Michael Angarano) stumbles on an antique staff that catapults him into a medieval Chinese-fantasy universe of soldier monks, witches and immortals. Jackie Chan and Jet Li make a splendid comedy-action team in a spectacle that showers affectionate irreverence on martial-arts classics as well as kitsch milestones like The Karate Kid. (M.S.) PG-13 113 minutes B+

Forgetting Sarah Marshall -- A slobby composer (Jason Segel) who gets dumped by his sleek TV-star girlfriend (Kristen Bell) heads for a Hawaiian resort and finds her there with her new lover. This movie is less like a party than a long night at a friendly saloon, but it's replete with wayward charms. Mila Kunis is a knockout as the girl the anti-hero gets on the rebound. (M.S.) R 110 minutes B

Harold & Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay -- In this sequel, New Jersey roommates Harold and Kumar set off for Amsterdam, the Netherlands, so Harold can chase the woman of his dreams while the lads can smoke all the weed they desire. On the plane, Kumar hauls out a homemade bong, which is mistaken for a bomb. Off to Gitmo! You'll smile at some bits, wince through many others and ultimately wonder whether the pacing would've improved had either Harold or Kumar developed a cocaine habit. (Chicago Tribune) R 102 minutes C-

Horton Hears a Who! -- Blue Sky Studios' ebullient full-length feature from Dr. Seuss' slender comic verse narrative is about an elephant whose big ears detect a whole world on a dust-speck. The movie brings you the rare feeling of reconnecting with a childhood friend who in some essential way has stayed the same. (M.S.) G 88 minutes A-

Leatherheads -- George Clooney plays a grizzled football player in the early years of pro ball who revives his bankrupt team by signing a college phenom and World War I hero (John Krasinski). As a director, Clooney's knack for masculine silliness makes this film the kind of manly brew that's fun from the foam down. (M.S.) PG-13 114 minutes B

Nim's Island -- Abigail Breslin plays Nim, the daughter of biologist Jack (Gerard Butler); Jodie Foster plays the agoraphobic adventure novelist who tries to come to the rescue when Jack is stranded. The human elements that should make the comedy and drama cohere remain isolated like splotches of finger paint on an unfinished first-grade mural. (M.S.) PG 95 minutes C-

21 -- An MIT math whiz desperate to raise tuition for medical school gets recruited to a team of gifted students who spend their weekends winning money by counting cards in Vegas. The student's ostensible transformation from timid kid to big player fails to produce much of a rush. (Los Angeles Times) PG-13 123 minutes C

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