Sterritt * Oddity alert! Made in 1968, not long after Mansfield's death, this tacky exploitation flick combines promotional footage shot during the actress's career - most of it during a European sightseeing tour - with coy shots of
"shocking" material (stripteases, drag queens) and a minidocumentary about the car crash that ended her life. The results are unbelievably tedious, but Mansfield buffs may find it intermittently worthwhile.
Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet. With Audrey Tautou, Mathieu Kassovitz, Rufus, Arthus de Penguern. (121 min.)
Sterritt *** Amélie is a waitress who anonymously becomes an eager do-gooder for people who never asked her to barge into their lives. Jeunet is never happy with a scene until he's directed it half to death with manic camera work and editing. But Tautou's acting is amiable enough to shine through any cinematic fuss. In French with English subtitles
Staff ***1/2 Unconventional, delightful, mischievous, visually stunning.
VS/N: 8 scenes with implied sex, innuendo and brief nudity. VV: 4 mild scenes of comic violence. VP: None. VD: 9 scenes with alcohol, 1 scene with a cigarette.
Director: Gil Junger. With Martin Lawrence, Tom Wilkinson, Marsha Thompson, Vincent Regan. (95 min.)
Staff ** Jamal (Martin Lawrence), a dispirited worker at Medieval World, a run-down amusement park, reaches for a medallion in the park's moat and hurtles back in time to 14thcentury England. There, his street smarts and a previously hidden streak of courage mobilize a ragtag bunch of rebels to depose the corrupt king. The movie is a lot better than you think it's going to be, thanks to Lawrence's energy, witty lines, and a good-natured take on old clichés. By M.K. Terrell.