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A weekly update of film releases THE BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES - American excesses of the '80s are the focus of this dark comedy about a Wall Street hotshot whose wrong turn in the Bronx results in a tragic accident, a media feeding frenzy, and a series of public and private fiascos. Tom Wolfe's novel is fierce, incisive, outrageously arrogant, and often hilarious. Brian De Palma's movie goes through the motions gamely but limply, collapsing under its own weight long before the miscalculated finale. Michael Cristofer wrote the screenplay. (Rated R)

GREEN CARD - An illegal French immigrant enters a marriage of convenience and strikes up a complex relationship with his very ambivalent wife. This amiable comedy has plenty of energy and smart performances, led by Andie MacDowell and G'erard Depardieu in his English-language debut. It doesn't have many surprises, though, and that's surprising from director Peter Weir, who used to be one of the most adventurous filmmakers around. (Rated PG-13)

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THE RUSSIA HOUSE - A world-weary British publisher receives a politically sensitive manuscript from an eccentric Soviet scientist and falls into the hands of intelligence experts determined to manipulate the situation for their own purposes. Directed by Fred Schepisi with a gentle, melancholy rhythm that perfectly captures a new view of the Soviet Union, caught between a tragically oppressive past and a potentially bright future that still hovers poignantly out of reach. Superbly photographed by Ian Baker, this is certainly one of the year's 10 best pictures. Tom Stoppard wrote the screenplay, based on John le Carr'e's surprisingly torpid novel. (Rated R)

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