Friday movie roundup – Jan. 15

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I appear to be in the minority, but I liked “The Book of Eli,” a post-apocalyptic graphic-novel-looking drama starring Denzel Washington. He has this book, you see, and a bad guy wants it. The book is important! This message brought to you by the U.S. Literacy Council and Cap’n O.G. Readmore.

The other new wide release today is “The Spy Next Door,” a kids’ comedy starring Jackie Chan as a former CIA spy who has to babysit his girlfriend’s kids while fighting off a Russian terrorist. Against all odds, this appear to be an actual movie, not a joke. Less surprising is that it’s one of Hollywood’s Shameful Secrets©, not screened for critics before opening. Review to come, unfortunately.

“The Lovely Bones” has been in limited release for a few weeks but goes wide today. As you probably expected, it’s not as good as the book.

Here’s a review of “Youth in Revolt,” which opened last week. Michael Cera needs to do something new, and quick, but this one’s not bad.

And finally, “Crazy Heart” (review at Film.com) is in limited release, starring Jeff Bridges as a washed-up country singer trying to his life back in order. Despite that description, it’s a very pleasant and cheerful movie, almost to its detriment. Bridges is an extremely jovial presence. Love that guy.

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