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Video Reviews: 'Mummy' month One of the summer's biggest hits leads October releases

Friday, September 28, 2001

By Barbara Vancheri Post-Gazette Staff Writer

October brings good news and bad. The good is the return of the mummy, opening of Bridget Jones' diary, DVDs of "The Godfather" trilogy and most recent "Star Wars" saga plus a twisted, tense little thriller called "With a Friend Like Harry." The bad news? "Freddy Got Fingered" and "The Animal."

Oct 2

"The Mummy Returns" -- One of summer's certifiable hits, this sequel is set in 1935, a decade after the events of the first film. The movie, starring Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz as now-married parents, builds to three simultaneous battles with warriors real and resurrected.

"Heartbreakers" -- Sigourney Weaver and Jennifer Love Hewitt are a mother-daughter con team who lure men to the altar and lead them into temptation and fat divorce settlements. Caught in their web are Ray Liotta, Gene Hackman and an innocent Jason Lee.

"Barbie in the Nutcracker" -- Barbie, playing the role of Clara, receives a wooden nutcracker as a gift from her aunt -- setting the tale in motion. Features computer-generated images and dance sequences choreographed by Peter Martins from the New York City Ballet. DVD arrives Oct. 23.

Also: Special edition DVD of "The Terminator," 30th anniversary edition of "Fiddler on the Roof" and the DVD of "The Greatest" with Muhammad Ali.

Oct. 9

"Bridget Jones's Diary" -- What a dilemma. Choosing between a charismatic publisher played by Hugh Grant and barrister portrayed by Colin Firth. That's what singleton Bridget Jones, marvelously played by Renee Zellweger, must do in this screen version of Helen Fielding's novel.

"The Godfather DVD Collection" -- A five-disc set includes the three films, new commentaries from director Francis Ford Coppola, along with a three-hour disc of bonus materials. The extras include a trip back to New York's Lower East Side to the original locations, a 73-minute documentary on the films' origins and Academy Award acceptance speeches.

"One Night at McCool's" -- This black comedy stars Liv Tyler as a seductress who craves a house of her own -- one she can paint, decorate, furnish and fill with flowers. As she goes after that goal, she encounters an easygoing bartender (Matt Dillon), his married cousin (Paul Reiser) and a police detective (John Goodman).

"Bruiser" -- George Romero wrote and directed this story of a man who wakes up one day to find his face has turned into a featureless mask. Given his new anonymity, he decides to pay back the people who have robbed him of his identity.

"Olive Juice" -- Backstreet Boys alert! A.J. McLean and Brian Littrell have cameos in this romantic comedy about a pet store owner who falls in love at first sight with a woman (Leighanne Littrell) who is engaged to someone else.

"I'm the One That I Want" -- Margaret Cho appears in this film of her one-woman show.

Also: DVD of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," "Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase," "Goldwyn," "Children of the Corn: Revelation" and "Journey of Man," featuring Cirque du Soleil.

Oct. 16

"Angel Eyes" -- A hardened Chicago policewoman (Jennifer Lopez) is nearly killed by a gunman -- until a mysterious stranger (Jim Caviezel) saves her, in more ways than one. They fall in love but may be too battle-scarred to make it work.

"Cats & Dogs" -- Jeff Goldblum plays an eccentric scientist who hopes to invent a vaccine that would cure humans of all dog allergies. That would upset the balance of power between dogs and cats, which prompts the felines to spring into action. With the voices of Sean Hayes and Tobey Maguire.

"Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace" -- This is the first of the four "Star Wars" movies to be released on DVD. A two-disc set will have six hours of bonus material including seven incomplete scenes cut from the theatrical release and George Lucas' first audio commentary.

"The Crimson Rivers" -- Jean Reno and Vincent Cassel star in this action thriller set against the French Alps. It's about a series of grisly murders, a child's death 20 years earlier and the secret history of a small town.

Also: "The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg," "Replicant," "The Judy Garland Show -- Just Judy" and "Psychedelic Furs Live from House of Blues."

Oct. 23

"Dr. Dolittle 2" -- Eddie Murphy is back talking to the animals, in an effort to save the forest home of a flock of animals. His success hinges on his ability to return a performing bear named Archie to the wild and get him to mate with another nearly extinct Pacific Western bear.

"Town & Country" -- Warren Beatty, Diane Keaton, Goldie Hawn and Garry Shandling appear in this long-delayed comedy about love and divorce. Beatty is a successful architect (Park Avenue apartment, Hamptons getaway) who has been happily married for 25 years when life begins to fall apart.

"Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within" -- The first cast of photo-realistic, computer-generated characters are placed in the year 2065, when a meteor has crashed on Earth and unleashed millions of hostile aliens.

"Freddy Got Fingered" -- Director and co-writer Tom Green stars in this gross-out comedy as a 28-year-old Portland, Ore., man-child who lives in his parents' basement and dreams of becoming an animator. Gags about animal genitalia and the like abound in this unfunny movie.

"With a Friend Like Harry" -- A seemingly innocent encounter with an old classmate during a road trip turns into a nightmare for a French husband and father. Although he barely remembers the schoolmate, Harry recalls much about him -- and is willing to try to make his life better, even if it means murder. This has been called a Hitchcockian psychological thriller, and it lives up to that high praise.

"Songcatcher" -- In the Appalachian mountains of 1907, a musicologist (Janet McTeer) arrives to record the Scottish and Irish folk songs the locals have preserved for generations. She soon is drawn into life in the hills, where her sister teaches and a local musician (Aidan Quinn) becomes increasingly appealing.

"About Adam" -- Irish writer-director Gerard Stembridge's sly and sexy romantic comedy stars Stuart Townsend as a handsome, suave guy who seduces everyone in sight. With Kate Hudson, Frances O'Connor, Charlotte Bradley.

Also: "Disney's Whispers: An Elephant's Tale," "Wishmaster 3: Beyond the Gates of Hell," repackaged video and DVD debut of "Jabberwocky" and special edition DVDs of "Monty Python and the Holy Grail," "From Here to Eternity" and "On the Waterfront."

Oct. 30

"Swordfish" -- John Travolta is a self-appointed counterterrorist trying to get his hands on a government slush fund (code named "Swordfish"). Be aware that this action picture, which also stars Hugh Jackman as a hacker and Halle Berry in her famous topless scene, blows up a Los Angeles block and that's just for starters.

"The Animal" -- Rob Schneider is a wimpy evidence clerk on a small-town police force who has a terrible accident and becomes a supercop after being implanted with the DNA of wild beasts.

"Waterproof" -- From the people who gave us "Left Behind" comes this movie about a Washington, D.C., shopkeeper (Burt Reynolds) inadvertently shot during a holdup attempt by the young son of a cab driver. His single mother kidnaps him, puts him in the cab with the boy and flees to her small Louisiana hometown.

Also: "Rolie Polie Olie: A Jingle Jangle Holiday" and "Queen: We Will Rock You."

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