Thursday, January 24, 2002 Volume 67, Issue 78



All genres covered in weekend's premieres

By Geronimo Rodriguez
Daily Cougar Staff

Films opening this weekend offer more than a few different ways to enjoy an evening of entertainment. From a swashbuckling adventure to a
science-fiction flick, the silver screen is prepared to entertain.

Also, Sean Penn, arguably the best actor in America, can be seen burning the screen in a dramatic role, while acclaimed director Todd Solondz
releases his latest work.

The latest adaptation of Alexandre Dumas' famous novel of the same title, The Count of Monte Cristo retells the story of Edmund Dantes' (James
Caviezel) false imprisonment for treason. With the help of Faria (Richard Harris), Dantes escapes and becomes wealthy, yet still seeks revenge
on the man responsible for framing him, Fernand Mondego (Guy Pearce).

This new adaptation is directed by Kevin Reynolds and stars Dagmara Dominiczyk, James Frain, Michael Wincott and Albie Woodington.

Kung Pow!: Enter the Fist mocks dubbed martial arts films. Written and directed by Steve Oedekerk (Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls), the film
patches a story together by inserting Oedekerk within an existing kung fu movie. The comedy also stars Tad Horino, Philip Tan and Jennifer

Penn's latest film, I Am Sam, is the story of a disabled man and the challenges he faces during a hearing that would allow him custody of his
daughter. Penn's performance in this film as a man with the mental capacity of a 7-year-old has been praised and may be worthy of an Academy
Award nomination.

The film is also backed by a strong soundtrack that is climbing the Billboard charts. The soundtrack features artists of today singing the classic
Beatles songs of yesterday.

During the filming of Sam, director Jessie Nelson made it a point for the actors and the rest of the action to move in the rhythm of certain songs
from the Beatles' catalogue.

Sarah McLachlan includes her rendition of "Blackbird," Rufus Wainright sings "Across the Universe" and The Black Crowes contribute with a
rocking version of "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds."

Penn's musician brother, Michael, is also featured on the soundtrack singing "Two of Us," a duet with Aimee Mann.

Other songs covered include "Let It Be," "Strawberry Fields Forever," "I'm Only Sleeping" and "Revolution."

Jessie Nelson directs Sam, which also stars Michelle Pfeiffer, Richard Schiff, Laura Dern and Dianne Wiest.

In the science-fiction thriller The Mothman Prophecies, reporter and widower John Klein leaves his job to investigate strange reports on the
belief that an alien invasion of Earth is occurring in a small West Virginia town.

Based on John A. Keels' 1975 novel, the film is directed by Mark Pellington (Arlington Road) and stars Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Will &
Grace's Debra Messing and Will Patton.

The latest teen romance, A Walk to Remember, stars pop star Mandy Moore, Shane West, Peter Coyote and Daryl Hannah

Directed by Adam Shankman (The Wedding Planner), Walk tells the story of what happens when the daughter of the town's minister and the
only son of a wealthy family find love during the town's Christmas pageant.

Lantana is a film that tells the stories of four couples framed by the discovery of a murdered woman. Set in Australia, the film is based on the play
Speaking in Tongues by Andrew Bovell and is directed by Ray Lawrence (Bliss).

This thriller stars Anthony LaPaglia (Autumn in New York), Geoffrey Rush (The Tailor of Panama) and Barbara Hershey.

In Storytelling, a series of stories follow characters that include an aspiring actor with cerebral palsy and his girlfriend, an author, a documentary
filmmaker, a young slacker and a slew of others.

Selma Blair, Paul Giamatti, John Goodman, Julie Hagerty and Leo Fitzpatrick are directed by Todd Solondz (Happiness), who divided the film
into two parts, fiction and non-fiction.

Send comments to

To contact the Shobiz Section Editor, click the e-mail link at the end of this article.

To contact other members of 
The Daily Cougar Online staff, 


Advertise in The Daily Cougar

Student Publications
University of Houston
151C Communication Bldg
Houston, Texas 77204-4015

©2005, Student Publications. All rights reserved.
Permissions/Web Use Policy


Last upThursday, January 24, 2002:

Visit The Daily Cougar