There’s plenty to hate about G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra (Paramount): It’s packed with broad clichés, terrible lines, and utterly generic summer-blockbuster fodder. But compared to the clumsy, ugly nads-joke-fest that is the Transformers movie, it’s a pretty slick, propulsive package, and a solid win in the still-pretty-small “Hasbro program-length cartoon toy ads that became live-action summer blockbusters” category…

Critics by and large gave a pass to the Denzel Washington/John Travolta thriller The Taking Of Pelham 1 2 3 (Sony), but for those of us who cherish the glorious profanity and local color of the 1974 original, it’s nothing short of a travesty. Where the original captured the tough, don’t-give-a-shit attitude of working-class New Yorkers, Tony Scott’s film settles for a lame, toothless redemption story. And Travolta’s preening turn as a baddie has nothing on Robert Shaw’s cold-eyed psychopath…

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There’s a germ of a good idea in I Love You, Beth Cooper (Fox), a teen comedy about a high-school super-nerd (Paul Rust, a 30-year-old who looks his age) who uses his valedictory speech to declare his love for a cheerleader type (Hayden Panettiere) to whom he’s never spoken. How does the girl of his fantasies square with the real thing? An intriguing question, but director Chris Columbus, working from Larry Doyle’s novel and screenplay, doesn’t produce a single honest, true, well-observed moment. This film is almost mesmerizing in its cluelessness…

The best that can be said for the special-effects-heavy kiddie adventure Aliens In The Attic (Fox) is that it could have been worse, but given the hyper, fart-focused state of kids’ movies today, that statement doesn’t have much meaning. This adventure features a bunch of CGI aliens who descend on Earth and take remote control of a couple of grownups, forcing a group of kids to band together and fight them. It’s all loud, manic kid empowerment, with virtually no bones thrown to even slightly older viewers, but at least it’s relatively clean and cartoony…

It seems like every other week, a new documentary surfaces to ask the question, “What crisis is going to sink humanity?” Polluted water (Flow)? Personal debt (Maxed Out)? National debt (I.O.U.S.A.)? Global warming (An Inconvenient Truth)? Peak oil (Collapse)? Robert Kenner’s slick, convincing, Food, Inc. (Magnolia) offers visions of a terrifying grub-apocalypse where animals are turned into genetically altered mutants, and the guardians of consumer health are looking the other way.

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