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Weekend Movie Guide: Another dismal Stiller comedy?

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There was a time when I thought Ben Stiller was one of the more inventive comic minds in the business (consider these hilarious shorts as proof--1,2,3,4,5,6). He can still be funny (witness his brilliant turn on Curb Your Enthusiasm), but it seems like he mostly wants to play it safe now. Let's hope that The Heartbreak Kid is a return to old form, both for Stiller and the inconsistent Farrelly Brothers (who direct). Swedish hottie Malin Akerman and Midwestern beauty Michelle Monaghan co-star in this update of Elaine May's classic comedy.

Ian McShane gave one of the sharpest, richest performances in recent memory as Al Swearengen in HBO's revisionist masterpiece, Deadwood. His reward for this towering achievement: a role in a silly movie like The Seeker: The Dark is Rising. It's obviously aimed at kids so I won't be too hard on it, but McShane really deserves better than this dreck. The Seeker is your standard "boy learns he is the last of a group of immortal warriors dedicated to fighting the forces of darkness" story. Happened to me just last week. Twice.

Ace screenwriter Tony Gilroy makes what appears to be an auspicious directing debut with Michael Clayton, a corporate thriller starring George Clooney as the titular hero(?). The film and Clooney have been getting superb reviews so expect this one to hang around for several weeks while the notoriously slow adult audience finds it. By the way, does anyone else think Sydney Pollack is a better actor than director? Also, doesn't this movie have all the feel of a Soderbergh picture? I wish he'd get back to this sort of stuff and scrap that Ocean's crap.