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Opening Films

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by INLANDER STAFF & r & & r & THE DARK KNIGHT & r & & r & Seldom do follow-ups ring so true to the original films, then do them one better. Director Christopher Nolan revisits what he did with Batman Begins and improves everything about it. Christian Bale is gloomier, lonelier and angrier, both as Bruce Wayne and as the Caped Crusader, while Heath Ledger's intense, frightening and funny Joker might make the world forget that Nicholson ever played him. Violent, action-packed, brilliantly realized. An outstanding sequel. (ES) Rated PG-13





MAMMA MIA!


If Donna (Meryl Streep) wants to cavort on a Greek island and sing ABBA songs, then more power to her fading baby boomer self. Julie Walters and Christine Baranski play her girl-buddies; Bachelors No. 1 (Pierce Brosnan), 2 (Stellan Skarsgard) and 3 (Colin Firth, meow) play the guys who may or may not have fathered Donna's daughter. As for the songs, we hear they've got a really good beat and you can dance to them. (MB) Rated PG-13





SPACE CHIMPS


This film about chimp astronauts boasts being created by one of the guys behind Shrek. The studio either picked the film's dumbest moments for the previews or they picked the least funny guy behind Shrek to helm the picture. Not much more to say ... Patrick Warburton voices the tough chimp, just like he voices every other tough animated character ever conceived. The over-exposed Andy Samburg also takes a turn as the chimp smartass. (LB) Rated G