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The Monitor Movie Guide

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Red stars denote the reviews of Monitor movie critic David Sterritt unless otherwise noted. Ratings and comments by the Monitor panel ( blue stars) reflect the sometimes diverse views of at least three other moviegoers. Information on violence, drugs, sex/nudity, and profanity is compiled by the Monitor panel.

STAR RATINGS

David Sterritt Monitor panel Meaning

**** **** Excellent

*** *** Good

** ** Fair

* * Poor

DUD DUD The Worst

NEW RELEASES

Bittersweet Motel (Not rated)

Director: Todd Phillips. With the rock band Phish. (84 min.) *** On tour with Phish, which prides itself on improvisational music that's unpredictable enough to satisfy the loyal fans who follow the group from gig to gig. The movie is as loose and lanky as the band's style, which should please groupies and newcomers alike.

The Cell (R)

Director: Tarsem Singh. With Jennifer Lopez, Vincent D'Onofrio, Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Vince Vaughn, Dylan Baker, Jake Weber. (115 min.) ** Lopez plays a psychotherapist who makes a high-tech journey into the mind of a demented serial killer in a desperate effort to help the police figure out where he's stashed his latest victim. The action is as grisly as it is surrealistic, which is what you'd expect from a cinematic visit to a particularly loathsome subconscious. But the film's patches of lurid sensationalism are partly offset by the director's explosive visual imagination, which keeps the screen jumping when the plot and dialogue sag. Howard Shore's music adds a dose of pounding energy.

Sex/Nudity: 5 scenes with nudity, mostly autopsied bodies. Violence: 24 scenes of gruesome violence, ranging from a child beating to a man being gutted. Profanity: 31 expressions, mostly mild. Drugs: 1 scene with alcohol, 5 with tobacco.

God's Army (PG)

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