Apparently, the fanboy hive mind has already consigned Spider-Man 3 (Sony) to the same "heinous failure" pile as the Matrix sequels and the Star Wars prequels, which is too harsh a fate for an adventure movie with so much to offer. (It's too harsh a fate for The Matrix and Star Wars series too, but that's another issue.) Yes, director Sam Raimi pushes the tone too far toward silly when he has an alien-influenced Peter Parker become a cartoony badass, and yes, the subsequent strain on the hero's relationships becomes drearily melodramatic. But Spider-Man 3's action sequences are thrillingly kinetic, and the movie's theme—about what it means to be a hero—threads through that action so artfully that it almost excuses all the clunk…

Charles Ferguson's Iraq War critique No End In Sight (Magnolia) is a shade less comprehensive than it needs to be: Mainly, it's lacking a proper examination of the Washington press corps, and a few balancing voices to defend U.S. policy. But as a history of the choices the Bush administration made in Iraq, and the disastrous consequences thereof, Ferguson's documentary is essential viewing—now, and for decades to come…

Jennifer Lopez's losing streak continues with El Cantante (New Line), a cookie-cutter biopic she produced as a vehicle for husband Marc Anthony, who stars as self-destructive salsa legend Héctor Lavoe. So why does Lopez score the lion's share of the screen time as Anthony's wife? Oh yeah, 'cause she's also the producer. After this, Jersey Girl, and Gigli, Lopez may want to think long and hard before acting opposite a real-life beau again…

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Those who loved Night Watch will probably feel the same way about Day Watch (Fox), the second installment in the special-effects-driven Russian trilogy about the secret urban war between good and evil. Those who hated Night Watch (or just found it too crazy-incoherent to bother with), ditto. Those who haven't seen Night Watch at all should get cracking; they certainly shouldn't try jumping into the series' wildly crowded, fast-moving supernatural mythos with this installment, unless they want to walk away even more numbed and headachey than the average Day Watch viewer…