The Road To Guantanamo
What They Say: Part documentary, part drama, Michael Winterbottom and Mat Whitecross direct a flaming apology for the existence of Guantanamo Bay's detention center. The Road to Guantanamo tells the story of three Muslims who accidentally end up in Afghanistan after 9/11 and consequently spend two years at Guantanamo before getting released without charges.
What We Say: While being detained in a US military prison did seem rather poopy, the detainees' story about how they innocently ended up in Afghanistan is pathetically weak. Perhaps that's why the directors skirt over that part, offering some convoluted version about accidentally walking into a mosque, or inadvertently getting on a bus, or something, um, oh, hmm, never mind-ish. People, let's be honest here. These three are poster boys in the propaganda war and they weren't in Afghanistan accidentally. Apologists like Winterbottom and Whitecross are fools to believe this.
The Lowdown: Fahrenheit 9/11 meets Hogan's Heroes.
Best Bit: The breakaway monologues by the detainees, who are dressed like Chechen warlords, as they try to earn sympathy for their innocence.
Starring: Riz Ahmed, Farhad Harun, Waqar Siddiqi.
Playing: theaters that care
What They Say: American Dreamz' hateful tagline is "Imagine a country where the President never reads the newspaper, where the government goes to war for all the wrong reasons, and more people vote for a pop idol than their next President." Yada, yada, yada.
What We Say: Two years ago, Michael Moore released Fahrenheit 9/11, to the protest of the war-thirsty American public. Today, Moore's sentiment is available for free inside every box of Kellogg's. American Dreamz' attempt to parody the current US administration is about as hip and exciting as your dad trying to imitate Ice Cube. The only way this film could have been less novel is if the Internet somehow figured in the plot.
The Lowdown: This revolution will be televised.
Best Bit: Happened in 2004.
Starring: Hugh Grant, Dennis Quaid, Mandy Moore, Willem Dafoe, Jennifer Coolidge, Chris Klein.
Playing: discount DVD racks
What They Say: Starring the elfish Penelope Cruz, a seemingly dead Spanish mom returns to her family, but not in the cool "I want braiiiins" way.
What We Say: One would think that a murdered husband and a mother who returns from the dead would provide some opportunities to keep an audience interested. However, director Pedro Almodovar's genius is in fact his ability to squeeze life out of the non-dead. Every festival loving prat with a collection of cause supporting wristbands would jump at the opportunity to administer a verbal blow job to Almodovar for this bit of cinema, which is why we find it so bad. Some would say that this film was about the nuances of life. We would say that this film was about absolutely nothing.
The Lowdown: Return of the Living Dead meets Mexican soaps.
Best Bit: Whatever.
Starring: Penelope Cruz, other Latinos.
Playing: art houses everywhere