American: The Bill Hicks Story
See review this issue. Hollywood Theatre.

As a vehicle for Russell Brand, this Arthur remake is a mild success: He fully embodies the titular happy-go-lucky degenerate, acting both innocently decadent and generously good hearted. Brand's effortless charm makes Arthur's alcoholic transgressions easy to forgive, and the bucketful of throwaway one-liners he's constantly firing off doesn't hurt, either. Unfortunately, Arthur doesn't get much else right. BOBBY "FATBOY" ROBERTS Various Theaters.

Atlas Shrugged
A not-screened-for-critics adaptation of Ayn Rand's batshit crazy book? What could go wrong? Review forthcoming. Fox Tower 10.

Barney's Version
Paul Giamatti plays Barney Panofsky, the central character in the film adaptation of Jewish Canadian author Mordecai Richler's final novel. Set and filmed in Richler's native Montreal, Barney's Version is an odd duck of a movie, effectively encompassing a decades-spanning plot, but fragmenting the narrative to make it all fit into 135 minutes. It works almost entirely due to Giamatti's performance as Barney, a television producer who boozes heavily, smokes cigars, and ignores his wife and family whenever a Canadiens game is on. He also spends his entire second marriage lusting after the pretty stranger who turned up at the wedding, and he may have murdered his best friend, Boogie (Scott Speedman). NED LANNAMANN Laurelhurst Theater.

Battle: Los Angeles
It's easy to break down the DNA of Battle: Los Angeles—its parents are H. G. Wells' The War of the Worlds and Ridley Scott's Black Hawk Down. This is an old-school war flick, albeit one in which the bad guys aren't Nazis but rather bulb-headed extraterrestrial cyborgs. What Battle does right is damn impressive: While alien armadas aren't anything new to anyone who's ever seen a movie, something that's seen a lot less is an America at war—an America with smoke-clogged streets, burned-out cars, and rocket-split buildings. In Battle, there's little doubt which force has the superior military; the resulting damage to our world is strangely tangible and jarring to behold. But what Battle does wrong might be a deal-killer: If you're just looking for some military sci-fi action, you won't be disappointed; if you're looking for anything more, you will be. ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters.

recommended Bill Cunningham New York
See review this issue. Living Room Theaters.

recommended Blue Valentine
Rarely does a film come along that's as truly adult as Blue Valentine, a movie driven by stunning, lived-in performances from Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams as a young married couple. In converging timelines, Valentine tracks both their initial courtship and the 48-hour period where it falls apart. The effect is no less emotionally brutal than a film like Gaspar Noé's Irreversible, as each happy memory of the past sweetens the pair's love story—while simultaneously making their falling out all the more devastating. Over a swelling score by Grizzly Bear, director Derek Cianfrance sets about autopsying Gosling and Williams' history, examining each cutting word and each loving gesture as if they were organs from the same body. DAVE BOW Academy Theater, Laurelhurst Theater, Mission Theater.

Cedar Rapids
Directed by Miguel Arteta (Youth in Revolt, The Good Girl, Chuck & Buck), the critical consensus on Cedar Rapids seems to be something along the lines of "Frank Capra's 'aw-shucks' earnestness meets the 'edge' of Apatow"—and if that sounds like just about the most mind-numbingly vanilla bullshit you've ever heard of, you're probably giving it too much credit. ZAC PENNINGTON Hollywood Theatre.

See review this issue. Living Room Theaters.

The Conspirator
See review this issue. Various Theaters.

Curtains and Red Tape: Large-Scale Public Art
Cinema Project presents a series of films and a panel discussion "about how public art happens in the city." Films include Christo's Valley Curtain, Running Fence, and Islands; more info at Clinton Street Theater.

recommended Fast Break
A must-see for anyone with an interest in the history of either the Trail Blazers or Portland itself, Fast Break comprises footage shot during the Blazers' legendary 1977 championship season. Much of the documentary is devoted to chronicling how Bill Walton spent his time off the court—which, because the man was a giant (literally) hippie, involved a lot of bike riding down the 101 and clambering through the woods picking blackberries. There's also a ton of great archival footage of the absolute frenzy that surrounded the team during that period, filtered of course through Portland's own hippie sensibility—a scene of a huge crowd singing a "Rip City" ballad as a folksinger strums on an acoustic guitar is particularly classic. ALISON HALLETT Clinton Street Theater.

recommended Filmed by Bike
See I'm Going Out, this issue. Clinton Street Theater.

recommended Hanna
Kids today are too goddamn coddled! Though they may be well versed in recycling and organic gardening, why isn't there a single Montessori school that teaches neck-snapping? The new thriller Hanna not only exposes these flaws in our school system, but does so in the guise of a rich, artsy thriller about a tween assassin on the run from the CIA. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY Various Theaters.

Hop suffers from a problem that often plagues films in the live-action-with-cartoons genre—while sharing a frame, the actors can't quite act like convincing humans, and the cartoons can't quite be as goofy or entertaining as you want them to. CHRIS COLLISON Various Theaters.

recommended The Illusionist
Sylvain Chomet's follow-up to his beloved The Triplets of Belleville, based on a script for an un-produced live-action film that was written by Jacques Tati in 1956. The Illusionist follows the titular magician—aging, weary, facing obsolescence—and his companion, a young, wide-eyed woman named Alice, who jumps at the chance to escape her provincial existence, only to find that life in the city isn't all that she had hoped. Nearly free of dialogue and full of stunningly evocative visuals, The Illusionist is whimsical and bittersweet, gorgeous and melancholy. I hesitate to say too much about it, because its many charms—countless small moments of sadness and humor—sneak up on you, patient and subtle. ERIK HENRIKSEN Academy Theater, Laurelhurst Theater.

Poltergeist ripoff Insidious has its moments. In fact, it's much better and scarier than it has a right to be, seeing as it's helmed by director James Wan, the man who unleashed the Saw franchise on the world. If you can forgive the stilted acting, a heavy-handed score, and a trimmable 15 or so minutes, you might even call it a decent horror flick. COURTNEY FERGUSON Various Theaters.

Jane Eyre
The newest adaptation of Charlotte Brontë's oft-adapted book embraces the gothic sensationalism of its source material, playing it straight and spooky, with nary a wink to the audience. Wind and rain whip across the moors, rooms are lit only by candle, and director Cary Fukunaga throws in a few good old-fashioned jump scares, just because he can. It's this commitment to Jane Eyre's gothic side that keeps the film from straying into camp, and keeps it fundamentally entertaining even as it tears through that goofy story: orphan Jane's heartless aunt, her hellish boarding school, her post as a governess where she meets the almost comically virile Mr. Rochester (Michael Fassbender) and learns his deep, dark secret. ALISON HALLETT Fox Tower 10.

The King of Kings
Cecil B. DeMille's fantasy classic, presented with live organ accompaniment. Hollywood Theatre.

Bradley Cooper is a dumb loser who finds a magic pill that makes his brain huge and reminds him to get a haircut. Then, using his haircut, he makes eleventy frillion dollars, but then the pills start making him die (either from taking them or from not taking them—the movie can't decide). Also there's some guy who chases him around sometimes, but that guy turns out to not even be important or scary at the end. Then Robert De Niro is like, "Guess what, Bradley Cooper? I gotcha magic pills and now you have to work for me at my company which provides excellent benefits and also we get along great so really there's very little at stake here! Or else you DIE!" And B-Coop's like, "Psych, DeNiro, because thanks to my giant brain I figured out how to NOT die, and those pills are stupid now. STUFFED." This movie is terrible, but actually kind of impressive when you learn that director Neil Burger is an actual sentient hamburger named Neil. LINDY WEST Various Theaters.

The Lincoln Lawyer
In The Lincoln Lawyer, Matthew McConaughey plays Mickey Haller, a criminal defense attorney who is all about gettin' paid. Sometimes he refers to money with a cool code name, like "Mr. Green" (cool!). His black friend Earl can't get over how cool Mickey is, and always says things like, "You know what? You would have done all right on the streets," and then Mickey is all, "Sheee-yit. What do you think I am, Earl?" and then Earl chuckles. (ANSWER THE QUESTION, EARL.) One day, Mickey takes on the biggest case of his career, defending creepy Ryan Phillippe, a rich dude who maybe or maybe didn't beat the shit out of a prostitute lady. As Mickey gets deeper into the case, he realizes that things are not always as they seem. In fact, things are dangerous, and Mickey is in a pickle! Sheee-yit! At this point, Mickey forgets about gettin' paid and is all about makin' things right. I kind of liked this movie. I give it a six. LINDY WEST Various Theaters.

Live and Let Die
"Names is for tombstones, baby!" Laurelhurst Theater.

recommended The Lives of Others
Easily one of the best movies of 2006, this melancholy German film follows an East German police officer who's responsible for spying on a suspected dissident and his girlfriend. The officer sits in a drab surveillance room, listening, as the couple fight and fuck and live, little knowing that their every move is being monitored. Little by little, the officer is drawn into their lives—and begins breaking rules in order to keep them safe. Long story short, it's a fucking great movie. Go see it. ALISON HALLETT Northwest Film Center's Whitsell Auditorium.

Local Shorts
Locally produced short films with filmmakers in attendance. More info: Q Center.

recommended Manufactured Landscapes
A look at the work and philosophy of photographer Edward Burtynsky, who captures the weird, horrible, and sordidly beautiful ways humans have changed the planet—he focuses on piles of rotting computers, on carved-out mountainous holes of mining operations, on never-ending expanses inside Chinese factories. Stunning imagery can only go so far, though; those with short attention spans will want to look elsewhere. But otherwise: Pretty excellent stuff, this. ERIK HENRIKSEN Fifth Avenue Cinema.

Portland Jewish Film Festival
The Northwest Film Center and the Institute for Judaic Studies wrap up the 19th Portland Jewish Film Festival with the 2010 French drama Sarah's Key and the 1948 documentary Nuremberg: Its Lessons for Today. More info: Northwest Film Center's Whitsell Auditorium.

Oftentimes you hear the phrase, "Hollywood doesn't give children enough credit." And maybe that's true... but then again, it's not like most kids are nuclear physicists. Generally speaking, they like movies about robot cars, insipid princesses, and talking Chihuahuas. So while a certain level of credit is certainly welcome, the animated feature Rango provides far too much for the kids—yet not quite enough for adults. WM. STEVEN HUMPHREY Various Theaters.

See review this issue. Various Theaters.

See review this issue. Hollywood Theatre.

Scream 4
Or, as the marketing materials would have us call it, SCRE4M. We will not be calling it that. Review forthcoming. Various Theaters.

Soul Surfer
It's become a rallying cry: "Hollywood is out of touch with real American faith and family values! Why don't they listen and shoot a movie I can watch with my youth group and/or grandma?" Enjoy Soul Surfer, Real America. It's really boring. DAVE BOW Various Theaters.

Source Code
Duncan Jones' latest, Source Code, shares some thematic similarities with his striking 2009 debut, Moon—this film, it so happens, is also about an isolated guy who's at the mercy of technology and those who wield it—but it has little of the freshness and originality that made Moon remarkable. Despite a few creepy sci-fi touches, Source Code is a vague, competent, and utterly forgettable thriller. ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters.

Sucker Punch
If the moral of Sucker Punch is "Girls rule!"—and I'm pretty sure it is, unless it's "Watching scantily clad chicks fight steampunk zombie Nazis is significantly more boring than one would expect"—it's weird that the way co-writer/director Zack Snyder tells it is to treat his characters like punching bags for sexual and psychological abuse. To be fair (uh, I guess?), Snyder's had more explicit rape scenes in his other films—both 300 and Watchmen had chunks of sordid ick—but Sucker Punch might be the first time he's based an entire narrative, such as it is, on the conceit that women are super easy to beat the crap out of. (Unless they're fighting robots, that is—then they rule! Especially if they're wearing miniskirts!) ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters.

recommended Super
See review this issue. Various Theaters.

recommended Win Win
High-school wrestling might be the un-prettiest sport yet devised by humans, a competition in which pasty adolescent boys, bedecked in unflattering singlets, grapple one another while rolling around a gymnasium floor. Win Win doesn't shy away from this distinctly ugly truth. Director Thomas McCarthy's (The Station Agent) film depicts high-school wrestling in all its painful, gangly, bepimpled awkwardness, and the surprising result is one of the best sports movies in recent years. Of course, Win Win isn't exclusively a "sports movie": There's a bunch of family drama centered around the team's star wrestler, Kyle (Alex Shaffer), but it's one of the film's many strengths that it neatly avoids the sulking and brooding of your typical adolescent-in-trouble flicks. NED LANNAMANN Various Theaters.

recommended Winter in Wartime
See review this issue. Fox Tower 10.

Your Highness
A list of things you should probably like if you're going to see Your Highness: Dungeons & Dragons, The Lord of the Rings and/or The Hobbit, Labyrinth, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and/or Xena: Warrior Princess, BeastMaster, weed, boobs, van art, dick jokes. If you're not into that stuff, congrats on how mature you are about penises! If you do own a couple 20-sided dice, though—perhaps you keep them secret, keep them safe, in that hollowed-out copy of The Silmarillion where you also keep your weed?—then hey, maybe give Your Highness a shot. ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters.