Mission Impossible III

  • Directors: J J Abrams
  • Producers: Tom Cruise, Paula Wagner
  • Writers: Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, J J Abrams
  • Genres: Action, Adventure, Thriller
  • Actors: Tom Cruise, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ving Rhames, Michelle Monaghan, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Billy Crudup, Laurence Fishburne, Maggie Q, Simon Pegg, Keri Russell, Eddie Marsan

Six years after the events of Mission: Impossible II, Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) has retired from being an IMF team leader, instead opting for a quiet life with his fiancée Julia (Michelle Monaghan), a hospital nurse. During their engagement party, Ethan receives a call from his old friend John Musgrave (Billy Crudup), who provides him with a disposable camera. After viewing a video hidden in the camera, he finds out Musgrave wants him to rescue Agent Lindsey Farris (Keri Russell), Ethan’s protégé, who has been captured in Berlin by Owen Davian (Philip Seymour Hoffman), a prominent dealer in the international black market. He reluctantly agrees to participate in the mission and meets the team which has been selected for him, consisting of Declan Gormley (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), Zhen Lei (Maggie Q), and his old partner, Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames).

The team assaults an enemy stronghold in Berlin and extracts Agent Farris successfully, who had been taped to a chair, but she dies during their escape when an explosive capsule placed inside her head detonates. After Lindsey’s funeral, Ethan is notified of a “package” sent to him by Lindsey, and discovers that it is a microdot hidden in a blank postcard. Ethan discusses its possible importance with Luther and both decide to keep its existence a secret.

Back at headquarters, Ethan is congratulated for his heroic actions, and then leaves for his honeymoon with Julia, with the blessing of his applauding teammates and promises for another mission which the White House is keen to contact him about. Ethan isn’t sure whether or not he’s going to retire, but promises to think about it and Brassel promises to tell him what the Rabbit’s Foot really is if he does come back.

Extraordinary Measures

  • Directors: Tom Vaughan
  • Producers: Michael Shamberg, Stacey Sher, Carla Santos Shamberg
  • Writers: Robert Nelson Jacobs
  • Genres: Drama
  • Actors: Brendan Fraser, Harrison Ford, Keri Russell

Brendan Fraser plays John Crowley, a biotechnology executive, whose two youngest children were afflicted with Pompe disease. Along with his wife, Aileen (Keri Russell), he raises money for research scientist Robert Stonehill (Harrison Ford) (most likely representing Dr. William Canfield), forming a company to develop a drug to save his children’s lives.

We Were Soldiers

  • Directors: Randall Wallace
  • Producers: Arne L Schmidt, Jim Lemley, Randall Wallace
  • Writers: Hal Moore, Joseph L Galloway, Randall Wallace
  • Genres: Action, History, War
  • Actors: Mel Gibson, Sam Elliott, Madeleine Stowe, Greg Kinnear, Don Duong, Chris Klein, Jon Hamm, Keri Russell, Barry Pepper, Dylan Walsh

A French Army unit in Vietnam in July 1954 during the First Indochina War is ambushed by soldiers of the Viet Minh. The French fiercly resist and kill many Viet Minh, but most French soldiers are killed and the unit eventually overrun by the Viet Minh. The Viet Minh Senior Lieutenant Nguyễn Hữu An (Don Duong), believing that France will eventually stop sending troops if there are many casualties, orders the execution of all surviving French soldiers.

Eleven years later, Lieutenant Colonel Hal Moore (Mel Gibson), a dedicated United States Army officer, is deeply committed to training his troops, who are preparing to be sent to Vietnam. The night before their departure, the unit’s officers hold a party to celebrate. Moore learns from a superior officer that his unit will be known as the 1st Battalion / 7th Cavalry regiment.

He is disquieted because the 7th Cavalry regiment was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer, who were slaughtered at the 1876 Battle of the Little Bighorn. Moore is also dismayed because President Lyndon B. Johnson has decreed that the war would be fought “on the cheap,” without declaring it a national emergency. As a result, Moore believes he will be deprived of his oldest, best-trained soldiers (a formal declaration of war would have meant mobilization and extension of the terms of enlistment for volunteer soldiers) – about 25% of his battalion – just prior to shipping out for Vietnam. Before leaving for Vietnam, Moore delivers a poignant speech to his unit:

At the end of the movie it is revealed that Moore (having been promoted to Colonel) returned home safely after 235 more days of fighting.

August Rush

  • Directors: Kirsten Sheridan
  • Producers: Richard Barton Lewis
  • Writers: Nick Castle, James V Hart, Paul Castro
  • Genres: Drama, Music, Romance
  • Actors: Freddie Highmore, Keri Russell, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Robin Williams, Terrence Howard, William Sadler, Marian Seldes, Alex O Loughlin

A boy named Evan Taylor (Freddie Highmore) lives in an orphanage, all the while believing that his parents are alive. He believes the music that he hears all around him is his parents communicating with him.

He meets a counselor, Richard Jeffries (Terrence Howard), of the New York Child Services Department. Evan tells him he does not want to be adopted, because he believes his parents are still alive and will come to collect him eventually.

Through a series of flashbacks, his parents are revealed to be named Lyla Novacek, (Keri Russell), a famous concert cellist, and Louis Connelly (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), an Irish guitarist and lead singer of a rock band, who spent one romantic night together and never saw each other again. Lyla became pregnant, which her father did not approve of, instead wanting Lyla to have a successful career without the obstacle of a child. After an argument with her father, Lyla ran out of a restaurant and was hit by a car. While in hospital, she gave birth to a son. Afterwards, she was told by her father that her child had died, unaware that he had actually been delivered successfully and then been sent to an orphanage by her father. Louis has never forgotten Lyla and does not know about Evan. Both have since given up music careers.

The night of the concert, Evan finally chooses to run from Wizard in favor of performing at his concert. In the meantime, Louis races to the park when he sees Evan’s pseudonym along with Lyla’s name on a sign billing the concert. Evan conducts his piece, and at its conclusion, when he turns around to see Lyla and Louis standing hand in hand, he knows that his mother and father heard his music.

Bedtime Stories

  • Directors: Adam Shankman
  • Producers: Adam Sandler, Andrew Gunn, Jack Giarraputo
  • Writers: Matt Lopez, Tim Herlihy
  • Genres: Comedy, Family, Fantasy
  • Actors: Adam Sandler, Keri Russell, Guy Pearce, Russell Brand, Richard Griffiths, Teresa Palmer, Lucy Lawless, Courteney Cox

Skeeter Bronson (Adam Sandler) is a hotel handyman who was promised as a child by his father Marty (Jonathan Pryce) to be the manager of the family hotel, which was agreed to by Mr. Nottingham (Richard Griffiths) when the Bronson family reached bankruptcy and had to sell their hotel to him. When Nottingham announces plans to build a new hotel he appoints another man, the snotty Kendall (Guy Pearce) to become the manager, overshadowing Skeeter because Kendall is dating his daughter Violet.

Skeeter’s sister Wendy (Courteney Cox) asks him to watch her kids, because the school at which she is the principal is being closed and she is looking for a job in Arizona. Skeeter, who had been told not to visit their home by Wendy’s now-divorced husband had not gotten to know his niece and nephew Bobbi and Patrick (Laura Ann Kesling and Jonathan Morgan Heit) after some initial awkwardness, with both the kids and his day shift babysitter Jill (Keri Russell) he finally decides to settle them into bed and meets their pet guinea pig Bugsy (named because his eyes “Would look big on a cow!”) as they ask him to read a story, the environmental conservative storybooks that Wendy had weren’t satisfactory, so upon deciding to make his own story, he created it, wrapping around his own life as a medieval story about a squire named “Sir Fixalot” and his antagonist “Sir Buttkiss” (Kendall) during the course of the story the entranced kids make their own additions to the story, such as the king (Nottingham) giving Sir Fixalot a chance to prove himself worthy of the kingdom’s crown and usurp Buttkiss’ chances. During the celebration, Patrick announces that it starts raining gumballs, and the story ends at that. The following day, Skeeter is called to fix Nottingham’s television which had broken and during the visit, he tells Skeeter the “secret” theme that he had announced for the hotel, which was a rock and roll theme much like that of the Hard Rock Hotel when Skeeter points this out, he is offered the opportunity to come up with a better theme, a contest to prove if he may be more right for this position against Kendall. While celebrating his luck, Skeeter suddenly is greeted with a shower of gumballs raining down from above, which was also in the story the night before. Skeeter concludes that the story that he had told to the children had come true and quickly develops a plan to use it to his advantage.

Sometime later, he marries Jill and founds a hotel named after his late father. Kendall, for trying to destroy the School with Skeeter’s nephew and niece inside the building isn’t fired, instead he and his scheming partner Aspen (Lucy Lawless) are demoted to members of the hotel wait staff. Violet marries Mickey giving him control of the Nottingham Empire, becoming the 9th richest man alive, while Nottingham himself overcomes his fears of germs and becomes the School Nurse. In the meantime newlywed Skeeter and Jill have a baby.