"Remember the Titans," "Eyes of Tammy Faye," "Woman on Top," and going straight to cable, "Cherry Falls" 

Quick Flicks

!B! "Remember the Titans"!B! "Eyes of Tammy Faye"!B! "Woman On Top"!B! "Cherry Falls"

"Remember the Titans" — Oscar-winner Denzel Washington is back on the screen in another moving tale about race relations. This time, his character is based on an actual Northern Virginia high school coach. Washington plays Herman Boone, an African-American football coach brought in when the Alexandria school board desegregated its schools. Not only must he attempt to take an all-white school's winning team and mesh it with an all-black school's winning team, Washington's character must deal with overcoming his own prejudices.

While much has been made of the artistic license filmmakers have taken with the facts of this "real" event in 1971, I leave those questions to historians. Want the truth? Watch documentaries. Want to be entertained? Inspired? Moved? Watch a movie as heartfelt and well intentioned as "Remember the Titans." Sure it's a predictable, pumped-up, sports-as-a-metaphor-for-life tale. But I'm a sucker for that kind of feel-good movie.

"Eyes of Tammy Faye" — Hmmm. Now didn't I just imply that truth and documentary are interchangeable? Well, this "documentary" may well have me changing my mind. Or, at the very least, putting a huge disclaimer that the "truth" of a documentary depends on the level of truth recognized by the subject. Which is a roundabout way of saying this documentary about the rise and fall and rebirth of Tammy Faye Bakker is highly entertaining but obviously adoring. She talks freely about everything, but there's always that playful wink. Regardless, "The Eyes of Tammy Faye" is a singular piece of entertainment, just as its subject is a singular piece of work.

"Woman On Top" — Despite its gorgeous star, its samba rhythms and its fairy-tale whimsy, this roman …ÿœlef about a chef done wrong remains a half-baked charmer. Penelope Cruz is Brazilian chef Isabella, who flees to San Francisco when she catches her machismo-threatened hubby, Toninho (Murilo Benecio), with another woman. Quicker than you can say sautAc, Isabella's cooking entices TV producer Cliff (Mark Feuerstein). When he offers her a spot on a local food show, she's a big hit. So big, word of her success reaches hubby in Brazil. Now, while Isabella continues to engage the world with her smile and culinary talents, it's a fight to see who will win her heart. This is strictly cotton candy for the soul.

"Cherry Falls" — Attention, fans of movies shot here in Richmond. It seems after months of dithering back and forth, USA Films has finally decided to bypass the big screen and release this teen-slasher flick straight to cable. Look for it to premiere on the USA Network around Oct. 20. Early screenings found equal parts to like and abhor about this third feature from "Romper Stomper" director Geoffrey Wright, featuring a serial maniac out to kill only virgins in one Virginia town.


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