(McClatchy) - A look at what's new in movies, books, music, television, video games and DVDs for the weekend.
"BLACK SNAKE MOAN"
An aging bluesman (Samuel L. Jackson) who's just been abandoned by his wife finds a young woman (Christina Ricci) bruised and unconscious near his home. He takes in the young woman, chains her up and decide he's going to reform her of the wicked lifestyle she leads. With Justin Timberlake, S. Epatha Merkerson and John Cothran. Directed by Craig Brewster ("Hustle and Flow"). Released by Paramount Vantage. Rated R.
Official movie site
What the critics say:
"I loved the picture's tabloid energy and heart."
-David Edelstein, New York Magazine
"The film is so jaw-dropping awful that it just might become a box-office hit."
-Kirk Honeycutt, The Hollywood Reporter
"FULL OF IT"
Faced with being the new kid in school, a teen tells all sorts of lies to impress his classmates but is dismayed to discover the lies are beginning to become reality, giving him a whole new set of problems. Starring Ryan Pinkston, Kate Mara, Craig Kilborn, John Carroll Lynch and Cynthia Stevenson. Directed by Christian Charles. Released by New Line Cinema. Rated PG-13.
Official movie site
What the critics say:
This film was not available for review.
A comedy about four middle-aged buddies (John Travolta, William H. Macy, Tim Allen and Martin Lawrence) who use their vacations to fulfill their dreams of hitting the open road on their motorcycles. After setting off they encounter a whole lot of obstacles, not the least of which is a real biker gang that's not impressed with their novice approach. With Marisa Tomei, Ray Liotta and Jill Hennessey. Directed by Walt Becker. Released by Buena Vista Pictures. Rated PG-13.
Official movie site
What the critics say:
"'Wild Hogs' is lame enough throughout that you wonder why John Travolta, Martin Lawrence, Tim Allen and William H. Macy signed on for it. Yet the very presence of these stars keeps the film watchable."
-Carla Meyer, The Sacramento Bee
"Most of the roadside attractions of 'Wild Hogs' are either boring or outright annoying."
-David Germain, The Associated Press
Based on the true story of the killer that terrorized San Francisco in the late 1960s and early 1970s, "Zodiac" follows four men whose lives become intertwined with the case and for whom catching the killer becomes an obsession. Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Ruffalo, Robert Downey Jr., Anthony Edwards, Brain Cox and Chloe Sevigny. Directed by David Fincher ("Seven," "Fight Club"). Released by Paramount Pictures. Rated R.
Official movie site
What the critics say:
"A meticulous, mind-bending, nonstop mesmerizer of a movie."
-Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
"The movie holds you in its grip from start to finish."
-David Ansen, Newsweek
"Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan"
"Ali G" creator Sacha Baron Cohen revives one of his show's characters, the naive and always inappropriate Kazakh TV journalist Borat Sagdiyev. The movie has Borat and his producer traveling across the U.S., wreaking havoc and offending everyone they meet while exposing the shocking bigotry of real people. With Pamela Anderson. Directed by Larry Charles. Released by 20th Century Fox. Rated R. Available March 6.
"Fast Food Nation"
This movie spins Eric Schlosser's best-selling expose into a multi-character drama, examining the fast food industry from corporate offices down to the slaughterhouses. When the meat at one of the fictional Mickey's restaurants is found to be contaminated, a company executive (Greg Kinnear) who's sent to investigate gradually begins to question whether anyone should be eating Mickey's hamburgers. With Ethan Hawke, Kris Kristofferson, Patricia Arquette, Bobby Cannavale, Paul Dano and Luis Guzman. Directed by Richard Linklater. Released by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. Rated R. Available March 6.
"Hawaii Five-O - Season 1"
The first-season collection of the classic crime show that debuted in 1968 includes the original two-hour pilot and the 24 episodes that followed. Released by Paramount Home Video. Not rated. Available March 6.
"The Other Side of Midnight"
Critics hated this 1977 movie based on the Sidney Sheldon novel about a French woman who pledges she'll use men to achieve wealth and happiness, and who succeeds before an encounter with a lost love has her plotting murder. Lovers of bad movies may enjoy this as camp. Starring Marie-France Pisier, Susan Sarandon and John Beck. Directed by Charles Jarrott. Released by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. Rated R. Available March 6.
Disney's 1953 adaptation of the J.M. Barrie book remains one of the company's best-loved animated features. Filled with songs and omitting the sad subtext of Peter refusing to grow up, the story follows the Darling children's first trip to Neverland, where they and Peter battle the evil Captain Hook. Featuring the voices of Bobby Driscoll, Hans Conreid, Katherine Beaumont and Bill Thompson. Directed by Clyde Geronimi, Wilfred Jackson and Hamilton Luske. Released by Walt Disney Video. Rated G. Available March 6.
"South Park - Season 9"
This collection of the raunchy cartoon show features the infamous, Emmy-nominated "Trapped in the Closet," in which a distraught Tom Cruise locks himself in Stan's closet. Released by Comedy Central. Not rated. Available March 6.
"Carol Vorderman's Sudoku"
Solve Sudoku puzzles in timed trials and take on British author and TV personality Carol Vorderman in a head-to-head challenge. Includes more than 1 million unique puzzles. Published by Eidos Interactive for PlayStation 2 and PlayStation Portable. Rated E. Available March 6.
"College Hoops 2K7"
This new offering in the college basketball game series includes NIT play (if your team doesn't make it to the big NCAA Tournament) and more than 325 real teams to choose from. Published by 2K Sports for PlayStation 3 (title already available for Xbox, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 2). Rated E. Available March 5.
"Def Jam Icon"
A game that combines hip-hop beats with street fighting as players try to discover new talent and become record industry moguls using music as a weapon. Published by Electronic Arts for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Rated M. Available March 6.
"Ghost Recon: Advanced War Fighter 2"
Gamemaker Ubi Soft aims for more realistic combat in this shooter that puts elite soldiers in several different war zones, forcing them to cope with environmental conditions as they pursue enemies. Published by Ubi Soft for Xbox 360 and PC. Rated T. Available March 6.
This off-road racing game has players compete in many different courses and promises realistic environments, vivid crashes and better AI. Published by Sony Computer Entertainment for PlayStation 3. Rated T. Available March 6.
"NBA Street: Homecourt"
Another basketball game that pits players against the NBA's best on concrete neighborhood courts. Published by Electronic Arts for PlayStation 3 (title already available for Xbox 360). Rated E. Available March 6.
"Titan Quest: Immortal Throne"
This expansion to the 2006 role-playing game adds new characters, new environments, including the underworld of Hades, and new monsters such as Cerebrus, the three-headed guardian of the underworld gates. Published by THQ for PC. Rated T. Available March 6.
A turn-based strategy game that has players command a combat unit on a newly colonized planet that's facing a threat from deep space. Published by Tri-Synergy for PC. Rated T. Available March 6.
"Wario: Master of Disguise"
Recurring game character Wario steps into a TV show he's watching and proceeds to hijack episode after episode of the series, wearing disguises and traveling to different locales as he goes along. Published by Nintendo of America for Nintendo DS. Rated E-10+. Available March 5.
Air, "Pocket Symphony": The odd French duo mixes synthesizers, Japanese koto sounds and guest vocals from the likes of Jarvis Cocker and Neil Hannon. Released by Astralwerks. In stores March 6.
Arcade Fire, "Neon Bible": The sophomore album from the much-hyped Canadian band features a mix of grungy punk sounds, pipe organ, military choir and orchestra. Released by Merge Records. In stores March 6.
Patti Austin, "Avant Gershwin": The singer tries her hand at compositions by the great George Gershwin, including the "Porgy & Bess Medley" and "Love Walked In." Released by Rendezvous. In stores March 6.
Ry Cooder, "My Name Is Buddy": The composer and guitar virtuoso's latest album tells the story of a traveling cat named Buddy and features a booklet with illustrations that provide more detail about his Depression-era adventures. Released by Nonesuch. Available March 6.
Mary Chapin Carpenter, "The Calling": The singer-songwriter melds personal ruminations on married life with sharp jabs at the campaign against the Dixie Chicks and the government's Hurricane Katrina debacle. Released by Zoe Records. In stores March 6.
Johnny Cash, "Here Was a Man: The Ultimate Gospel Collection": This collection of the late Man in Black's gospel recordings boasts 24 tracks, including Cash's renditions of such songs as "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" and "In The Sweet By And By." Released by Sony. In stores March 6.
Rjd2, "Third Hand": The producer-DJ-musician abandons his sampling ways for this album that features vocals and live instruments. Released by Xl Recordings. In stores March 6.
Son Volt, "Search": The band revisits its familiar alt-country/Americana territory with a wider array of instruments such as the piano, organ and a horn section. Released by Red Int./Red Ink. In stores March 6.
The Stooges, "The Weirdness": The reconstituted band (plus a new bassist) returns to the same territory it mined during its late '60s/early '70s heyday as one of the original precursors to punk. Released by Virgin Records U.S. In stores March 6.
Amon Tobin, "Foley Room": The musician/lover of sampled noise crafts an album full of soundscapes made from recordings gathered from a wide array of places. Released by Ninja Tune. In stores March 6.
All times are EST/PST.
Saturday, March 3
"The Robber Bride": Mary-Louise Parker stars in this drama adapted from Margaret Atwood's novel about a deceitful woman who turns up dead and the people who had reason to want her that way. 8 p.m., Oxygen.
"Robin Hood": A new British series revisits the legend of Robin Hood and his Merry Men as they tangle with the Sheriff of Nottingham. 9 p.m., BBC America.
"Sacrifices of the Heart": Melissa Gilbert stars in this drama about an attorney who returns to home when her father becomes ill and finds herself coping with painful memories. Written by Patti Davis, the daughter of former President Ronald Reagan. 9 p.m., Hallmark Channel.
"Battlestar Galactica": Starbuck fears she's beginning to lose her sanity as she wrestles with horrific memories. 10 p.m., The Sci Fi Channel.
Sunday, March 4
"The Winner": Rob Corddry stars in this new comedy about a grown man who lives with his parents. 8 p.m., Fox.
"Aryan Brotherhood": This documentary takes a rare inside look at the gang that operates inside prisons all over the nation and controls rackets that extend beyond jailhouse walls. 8 p.m., National Geographic Channel.
Monday, March 5
"Inside North Korea": A TV crew posed as a medical team to get a look inside North Korea, a totalitarian state that has little contact with the outside world and where dictator Kim Jong Il holds absolute power and tells his people that he is a god. 9 p.m., National Geographic Channel.
Tuesday, March 6
"House": Dave Matthews guest stars as a brain-damaged musical savant who needs House's help. 9 p.m., Fox.
Wednesday, March 7
"Wedding Bells": Three sisters (KaDee Strickland, Sarah Jones and Teri Polo) try to run the wedding emporium they've inherited from their parents while also trying to sort out their own love lives. From producer David E. Kelley ("Ally McBeal"). 9 p.m., Fox.
Maeve Binchy, "Whitethorn Woods": Binchy's latest novel concerns characters living in a small Irish town who tell their own stories as a highway project threatens to demolish the town's obscure, unofficial shrine. Published by Knopf. In stores March 6.
Benjamin Black (aka John Banville), "Christine Falls": Booker Prize-winning author Banville adopts the pseudonym Benjamin Black for this thriller set in 1950s Ireland about a pathologist whose investigation into the death of a young maid exposes a network of corruption that reaches into the Catholic Church and his own family. Published by Henry Holt & Company. In stores March 6.
Jodi Picoult, "Nineteen Minutes: A Novel": A judge ponders the case of a bullied boy who becomes a mass murderer during a Columbine-like rampage at his high school. Published by Simon & Schuster. In stores March 6.
Gene Wilder, "My French Whore": The first novel from actor Wilder concerns a young man serving in the U.S. Army during World War I who assumes the identity of a German spy and gets access - for a time, at least - to an astonishing world of privilege. Published by St. Martin's Press. In stores March 6.