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Arts and Entertainment

New Movie Friday: Hot Fuzz, Vacancy

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Hot Fuzz - The guys who made the brilliant zombie spoof Shaun of the Dead, writer/director Edgar Wright and co-writer/star Simon Pegg, reteam for Hot Fuzz, what looks to be a hilarious spoof on the police thriller. Jealous colleagues have London's best cop (Simon Pegg) transferred to the peaceful village of Sandford, where he is partnered with an enthusiastic but witless police officer (Nick Frost) who longs for gunfights and car chases to break up the monotony of small-town policing. When the pair stumble upon a series of suspicious accidents, it looks like Sandford may not be such an idyllic burg after all.

Prediction: Focus Features has pumped a lot of money into promoting Hot Fuzz, and with strong advance buzz, it could win the weekend box office or at the least challenge Disturbia for the top spot.

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Bunny Whipped - "A quirky romantic comedy that follows the interweaving story of a sports writer and a rap star." - IMDB

Everything's Gone Green - The first screenplay written by author Douglas Coupland is an indie comedy about a slacker, Ryan (Paulo Costanzo) who loses his job and gets dumped by his girlfriend but takes a Mandarin language class where he falls for Ming, a woman who is dating a scammer. The slacker and the scammer team up for a lottery scheme that makes Ryan rich, but what he really wants is to prove his love to Ming.

Fracture - Oh my god! I never thought John Stamos would be starring in a movie with Anthony Hopkins. How cool is that?! I've always thought, going back at least to the Full House days, that Stamos is underrated as a dramatic actor. The guy has range, and he'll finally get a chance to prove himself. Oh, shit. Wait a minute. That's not some pretty boy trying to prove he can act. That's Ryan Gosling playing the earnest ADA trying to bring down a manipulative, sociopathic dude (Anthony Hopkins) who's accused of shooting his wife.

In the Land of Women - Lawrence Kasdan's other son, Jon, directs this romantic dramedy about a TV writer (Adam Brody) who gets dumped and moves back home to Michigan, where he lives with his sick grandmother (Olympia Dukakis) and makes friends with a family of three women who help him "rediscover himself and redefine his life."

Mayavi - After spending time in jail, Mahi (Mammootty) turns into a vigilante who attacks people at night and earns the name Maayavi, meaning mysterious spirit.

Mayakkannadi - Bollywood film that is set in Chennai and stars "Cheran as a trendy and fashion savvy youth," according to India Glitz.

Plagues & Pleasures On The Salton Sea - This documentary about the Salton Sea, considered one of America's worst ecological disasters, documents some of the eccentrics who live on the perimeters of this stagnant lake.

The Tripper - I couldn't say it better than the Yahoo! Movies description: " A group of free-love hippies attend an outdoor music and camping festival only to find themselves stalked by a maniac with a Ronald Reagan fixation and his killer dog." David Arquette directs this horror-comedy starring Jaime King, Thomas Jane and Lukas Haas.

Vacancy - American-born, Hungarian-trained director Nimród Antal's second feature is a smart scary thriller about a bickering couple (Kate Beckinsale & Luke Wilson) trapped inside a motel where the manager has been making snuff films featuring his guests. There's nothing particularly original about the plot, but Antal, who is supremely talented as evidence by his first feature, Kontroll, makes great use of the locale, maximizing the motel's claustrophobic potential. His use of onscreen space is also quite original and adds to the terror of the story. In short, a truly frightening horror film that puts a fresh spin on a genre that too often wallows in boring gore.

The Valet - A French comedy starring Daniel Auteuil as a business tycoon who's photographed by the paparazzi alongside his mistress (Alice Taglioni) and a hotel parking valet (Gad Elmaleh). To avoid scandal he tries to set up the valet and the mistress as a real couple. Wackiness ensues.

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Whole New Thing - Canadian coming-of-age comedy about a precocious, home-schooled13-year-old boy whose hippie parents enroll him in the local junior high, where he promptly develops a crush on his English teacher, a gay man.