Reviews of 'ShowBusiness' and 'I Have Never Forgotten You: The Life and Legacy of Simon Wiesenthal.'
New in theaters I Have Never Forgotten You: The Life and Legacy of Simon Wiesenthal (Unrated)
Director: Richard Trank. (105 min.) Richard Trank, the documentarian who directed the Oscar-winning "The Long Way Home," which was about post World War II Jewish refugees, mines similar terrain here in his profile of the late Simon Wiesenthal. The famous Nazi hunter lost at least 89 family members during the Holocaust which he barely survived. He dedicated his life, at some cost to himself, to assisting in the capture of over 1,000 war criminals, including Adolf Eichman and the Gestapo official who arrested Anne Frank. Through archival footage and numerous interviews, including one with Wiesenthal's daughter, a richly layered portrait emerges of a man steeled not so much for revenge as for justice. Grade: A-
– Peter Rainer
ShowBusiness: The Road to Broadway (PG)
Director: Dori Berenstein. With Alan Cumming, Idina Menzel, Kristen Chenoweth, Tony Kushner. (102 min.)Tony-Award-winning producer Dori Berenstein's documentary chronicles Broadway's 2003-04 season by focusing on four musicals, "Avenue Q," "Caroline, or Change," "Taboo," and "Wicked." Following the shows from rehearsals to Tony Awards night, she gets behind the scenes and does a good job conveying the incessant anxieties and glee of the talents involved. She also frames the documentary in terms of a quest for Tonys, and even though she may have intended this as an indictment, it comes across more like a celebration. Grade: B
Still in theaters Shrek the Third (PG)
Director: Chris Miller. With Antonio Banderas, Rupert Everett, Amy Sedaris, Amy Poehler, Mike Myers. (109 min.)With a mixture of new songs and oldies (including Wings' "Live and Let Die"), "Shrek the Third" tries to create an aural environment that will go down well with both kids and adults. And there are some imaginative leaps in animation, though they are dragged down by the dead weight storytelling. While it's true that, from a technical standpoint, the "Shrek" movies continue to improve, it's also true that technique isn't everything. Where's the victory in showing off a new and improved green skin tone or a more detailed blade of grass if the production itself is blurry with the same old clichés? Grade: C+