Now See Here!

By and

“The Hills Have Eyes”

Directed by Alexandre Aja

The hills are alive with the sound of screaming! With blood they have spilled, for a thousand years!

Eat your heart out, Julie Andrews.

A hapless family drives down the wrong unpaved, Southwestern desert road (duh) in this remake of the Wes Craven (dare I say it?) horror classic. (R)

“The Shaggy Dog”

Directed by Brian Robbins

Tim Allen returns to his bread-and-butter: suburbia, with a dash of magic!

The twinkle this time comes from a curse that turns Allen into a slobbering canine when it’s least convenient.

“The Shaggy Dog” is a remake as well, but not of a Wes Craven movie. Too bad. I would pay $7.50 to see “Wes Craven’s The Shaggy Dog.” Oh, wait. I did. It was called “Cursed.” I want my money back. (PG)

“Failure to Launch”

Directed by Tom Dey

Matthew McConaughey plays a 30-something bachelor who still crashes with his folks. His parents hire a woman (Sarah Jessica Parker) to pretend to fall in love with him so he’ll move out and on with his life.

Do scenarios like this happen in real life? That’s actually kind of mean.

Well, it couldn’t be crueler than asking audiences to sit through another scene in which the guy/girl finds out that his/her relationship with the guy/girl was based on a bet/job/pity.

They should have called it “Failure to Ignite Interest.” Snap-snap-snap. Thank you very much. (PG-13)

“The Libertine”

Directed by Laurence Dunmore

You will not like Johnny Depp as the Earl of Rochester, an infamous drunkard, debaucher and poet. How do I know you won’t like him? He tells us so at the beginning of the movie.

Will this herald the beginning of a wave of hypnotic movie messages? The theater manager pops up on the screen 30 minutes in: “You will go buy popcorn and a large Coca-Cola.” Yes, master. (R)

“Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story”

Directed by Michael Winterbottom

A 21st-century film crew tries to make a movie about an 18th-century Englishman from a book that’s about as straightforward as the randomly re-constructed shreds of a calculus exam.

Steve Coogan (“24 Hour Party People”) stars in this kooky cauldron of confusion (R).

“Oscar Documentary Shorts 2005”

What’s the best thing about watching a string of 20- to 30-minute short films? If one of them sucks, it will be over soon.

I wish I could say the same thing about “Manderlay.”

Check out this selection of Oscar-nominated short-form documentaries and at the Tower, Friday through Sunday. (NR)

MIDNIGHT MADNESS AT THE TOWER!

“The Princess Bride”

Directed by Rob Reiner

Inconceivable!

Actually, it’s quite conceivable that Rob Reiner used to make pretty good movies, such as this swooning, swashbuckling, saber-witted adventure, based on the William Goldman novel, playing at the Tower this weekend.

Bring your favorite, six-fingered friend and get a special “Freak of Nature” discount! (PG)

Compiled by Aaron Allen