Jim Sturgess and Anne Hathaway in One DayONE DAY

When Emma (Anne Hathaway) and Dexter (Jim Sturgess) first meet in director Lone Scherfig's One Day, it's the morning after their 1988 university graduation, and a few minutes before the happily drunken pair tumbles into Emma's bed. They don't wind up consummating their flirtation, but the young Brits - and best-friends-to-be - seem perfectly content to smile and snuggle while the sun rises, and Emma makes the observation that the new day, July 15, is the English near-holiday of St. Swithin's Day. Or, as Scherfig's comedy/drama/romance might cause me to think of it from now on, St. "Well, Isn't That an Astounding Coincidence?" Day.

Liev Schreiber and Daniel Craig in DefianceDEFIANCE

Am I the only person who wishes that Edward Zwick would go back to making sharp, bitchy comedies like his 1986 Rob Lowe-Demi Moore romance About Last Night...? The director's latest - the action drama Defiance - tells the astonishing, true-life story of the Bielski brothers, who hid hundreds of fellow Jews in a makeshift Lipicza?ska Forest camp during World War II, and who managed to fend off Russian officers and German armies through innovation, daring, incredible bravery, and a well-stocked supply of artillery. With Daniel Craig and Liev Schreiber as the ideologically warring siblings Tuvia and Zus Bielski, Defiance is impassioned and serious and God knows it's sincere, and it wasn't until about 45 minutes had passed that I realized I no longer watch Edward Zwick movies; I endure them.

Ricky Gervais, Tea Leoni, and Greg Kinnear in Ghost TownGHOST TOWN

Maybe you need to have seen a lot of bad romantic comedies, or bad movies involving ghosts, or bad romantic comedies involving ghosts, to appreciate just how good Ghost Town is. Maybe not, of course, especially considering how hysterical Ricky Gervais is in the movie's lead. But if you sit through enough dreary Hollywood outings of this sort, it doesn't take long to realize that something pretty special is happening here.

Emile Hirsch and Christina Ricci in Speed RacerSPEED RACER

In future years, when I'm wondering exactly when it was that I turned into a very old man, I'm hoping I'll remember the date of May 9, 2008, when I fell asleep some 45 minutes into the onslaught of candy-colored incoherence called Speed Racer. And when, after returning to consciousness a minute or so later, I made it through another couple of scenes before falling asleep again.

Robert Downey Jr. in Iron ManIRON MAN

I'd love to tell you about the numerous, big-budget action sequences in Iron Man, the first of the many, many special-effects-laden extravaganzas hitting multiplexes this summer. But a day-and-a-half after seeing the movie, I don't remember much about them. I know there was an early scene in which the Iron Man prototype attacked an Afghan army with flamethrowers before whooshing his way to safety, and a scene where the new-and-improved version evaded American fighter jets, and a climax featuring our metal-plated hero battling a hulking creature with the body of a tank and the voice of Jeff Bridges. Beyond that, though, they're mostly a blur.

Mila Kunis and Jason Segel in Forgetting Sarah MarshallFORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL

Director Nicholas Stoller's Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a happy movie about misery, but during its first half hour or so, the film's rhythms are so unusual that you might not be sure what it is.

Rachel Weisz and Ryan Reynolds in Definitely, MaybeDEFINITELY, MAYBE

If anyone's keeping track, writer-director Adam Brooks' Definitely, Maybe is the third romantic comedy of 2008 to climax with its protagonist taking a hasty cab ride to an inevitable romantic clinch and subsequent Happily Ever After. And that's about the only conventional element in it. I'm a little staggered by just how wonderful this movie is, as nothing about the film, from its cutesy setup to the presence of leading actor Ryan Reynolds, appeared to suggest anything more than the latest spin on a tireless (and, by now, tiresome) genre. Yet Definitely, Maybe is sensational, so smart and witty and refreshingly grown-up that, hours after seeing it, you may still find yourself in a great mood; the only times I stopped smiling at the movie were when I was laughing out loud.

Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey in Fool's GoldFOOL'S GOLD

At one point during Fool's Gold's opening sequence, Matthew McConaughey's fortune-hunting hero is seen slo-o-owly hopping along the ocean floor, and for the next 110 minutes, the whole movie seems to be moving at the exact same speed. I understand that director Andy Tennant's (supposed) comic adventure isn't meant to be anything more than a featherweight romantic diversion - an excuse to watch the perfectly tanned McConaughey and Kate Hudson swap barbs while being photographed against intoxicatingly pretty Key West locales - and many in the audience appear content to accept it as such. But, good God, aren't these viewers at all bothered by how mind-numbingly lethargic the pacing is?

Jessica Alba and Parker Posey in The EyeTHE EYE

You know the expression "It's the little things in life"? Well, it's the little things in B-grade American remakes of Asian horror flicks, too, which is why I can't dislike The Eye as much as I probably should.

CloverfieldCLOVERFIELD

If the end of the world - or, at any rate, the end of Manhattan - eventually comes via a pissed-off, skyscraper-sized reptile, and the destruction is captured on video by an empty-headed twentysomething slacker goofus, the results will probably look and sound a lot like Cloverfield.

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