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ON THE SCREEN

Dates at the end of capsules indicate the film's initial review in the Deseret News.

NEW FILMS FRIDAYEVEN COWGIRLS GET THE BLUES - This comedy-drama, based on Tom Robbins' novel about an out-of-work model whose thumbs are oversized (Uma Thurman), is finally released after a couple of false starts and major editing revisions. Written and directed by Gus Van Sant Jr. ("Drugstore Cowboy," "My Own Private Idaho"). Cameos by Roseanne Arnold, John Hurt, Angie Dickinson, Keanu Reeves, Sean Young, etc. Reviewed in this section today. R (violence, sex, nudity, profanity, vulgarity, drugs). (Broadway, Creekside, Midvalley, South Towne.)

HOLY MATRIMONY - Leonard Nimoy directed this comic take on "Witness," about a pair of thieves (Patricia Arquette, Tate Donovan) hiding out in a strict Hutterite community in Canada. To be reviewed next week. PG-13 (violence, profanity, vulgarity). (Cottonwood, Flick.)

MAVERICK - Mel Gibson has the title role as a rambling gambler in the Old West in this Western comedy, a remake of the popular 1950s TV series. Jodie Foster co-stars, as a con artist with whom he locks horns, and the original TV Maverick, James Garner, is along as well, as a U.S. marshal. Reviewed in this section today. PG (violence, profanity, sex). (Century, Gateway, Holladay, Plaza 5400; Redwood, with "Major League II"; Reel, Sandy 9, Trolley Corners, )

THE SNAPPER - This rowdy Irish comedy is from the same folks who gave us "The Commitments," with one of that film's stars (Colm Meaney, best known for TV's "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine") as a father trying to come to terms with being a grandfather. Reviewed in this section today. R (profanity, sex). (Exclusive, Tower.)

YOU SO CRAZY - Martin Lawrence, who stars in the TV sitcom "Martin," does his standup act for this concert film, a la Eddie Murphy's "Raw." To be reviewed next week. Not rated, probable NC-17 (profanity, vulgarity). (Broadway, Century, Cottonwood, Plaza 5400, South Towne.)

NEW FILM WEDNESDAY

BEVERLY HILLS COP III - Eddie Murphy returns to his most popular role, as Detroit cop Axel Foley, once again finding himself in Beverly Hills, and ultimately chasing bad guys through an amusement park. Judge Reinhold is also back - as is Bronson Pinchot, reprising the character of Serge, who provided a memorable scene in the first "Beverly Hills Cop." To be reviewed when it opens next week. R (violence, profanity). (Century, Cottonwood, Flick, Plaza 5400, Redwood.)

MIDNIGHT MOVIE

BLAZING SADDLES - * * * - Mel Brooks' rude, crude and hilarious off-the-wall spoof of Westerns was his first movie parody, leading, of course, to many more. Cleavon Little is hysterical as a black sheriff trying to keep the peace in an all-white Old West town, aided by drunken gunslinger Gene Wilder and chanteuse Madeline Kahn. Co-stars include Slim Pickens, Alex Karras, Dom DeLuise and Brooks in two roles. R (violence, profanity, vulgarity, sex). (Tower, midnight, Friday and Saturday.)

CONTINUING FILMS

ACE VENTURA, PET DETECTIVE - turkey - Over-the-top Jim Carrey stars in this dreadful slapstick farce as the title character, tracking down the kidnapped Miami Dolphins mascot and quarterback Dan Marino prior to the Super Bowl. This one is in Pee-wee Herman-Ernest P. Worrell territory, except that it's far too vulgar for children. PG-13 (violence, sex, nudity, profanity, vulgarity). (Cinemas 5, Family Center; Redwood, with "Clean Slate"; Sandy Starships, Sugarhouse, Valley Fair.) (Feb. 4, 1994)

THE AIR UP THERE - * * - Disney basketball comedy, along the lines of "Cool Runnings" and "The Mighty Ducks," with Kevin Bacon as a down-on-his luck assistant coach who travels to Africa after spotting a promising player in documentary footage, unaware that his prospect is a chief's son and the tribe is in the middle of a land dispute. By-the-numbers stuff. PG (violence, profanity, vulgarity). (Kaysville, Sugarhouse.) (Jan. 7, 1994)

BACKBEAT - * * - Offbeat melodrama about the early days of the Beatles, focusing primarily on Stuart Sutcliffe (who left the band to become an artist) and his relationship with John Lennon and German photographer Astrid Kirchherr. Good performances (especially Ian Hart as Lennon) and invigorating musical numbers, using early cover tunes like "Money" and "Twist and Shout." Awfully raunchy, though, and the thick Liverpool accents and slang are difficult to understand in places. R (profanity, vulgarity, sex, nudity, violence, drugs). (Broadway.) (May 13, 1994)

BAD GIRLS - * * - OK Western with a feminist twist, as four prostitutes (Madeleine Stowe, Andie MacDowell, Mary Stuart Masterson, Drew Barrymore) band together to make a new life in the Northwest, only to find their plans thwarted by Stowe's old trouble-making gang. Everyone is fine except Barrymore, but the script offers up one Western cliche after another without any wit or style - just women toting six-guns instead of men. R (violence, profanity, vulgarity, sex, brief partial nudity). (Midvalley; Redwood, with "Threesome"; Reel, Trolley Square.) (April 22, 1994)

BEING HUMAN - * * * - Robin Williams stars in this quirky, low-key comedy-drama, playing five different characters named Hector in five different periods of history. Light whimsy that suggests a little courage can make all the difference in life, from Scottish filmmaker Bill Forsyth ("Local Hero"). Some episodes work better than others - and the best is saved for last, a wonderfully affecting look at a modern man trying to reconcile with his estranged young children. PG-13 (violence, sex, profanity, vulgarity). (Exclusive, Crossroads.) (May 6, 1994)

BITTER MOON - turkey - Supremely self-indulgent, flaccid Roman Polanski psychosexual drama about the obsessive, kinky and ultimately brutal relationship of a disenfranchised American writer (Peter Coyote) and a French waitress/dancer (Emmanuelle Seigner). The story unfolds in flashback as Coyote relates it in sordid detail to shocked Englishman Hugh Grant. Dumb. R (violence, sex, nudity, profanity, vulgarity). (Exclusive, Tower.) (May 13, 1994)

BLANK CHECK - turkey - A young boy is mistakenly given a million dollars in stolen loot and goes on a wild spending spree in this hopeless blend of the MTV and QVC cable channels, as well as "Home Alone" and "Brewster's Millions." An atrocious, unfunny exercise in crass moviemaking. PG (violence, vulgarity). (Kaysville, Sandy Starships, Valley Fair.) (Feb. 11, 1994)

BLUE CHIPS - * * * - Nick Nolte stars as a veteran Los Angeles university basketball coach who, after a losing season, allows himself to be corrupted in order to recruit some hotshot players. Nolte's central performance holds this one together, though Shaquille O'Neal makes a charming film debut as one of the recruits and a number of familiar faces have small supporting roles (Alfre Woodard, Louis Gossett Jr., etc.). PG-13 (profanity, vulgarity). (Family Center, Sandcastle, Sandy Starships, Sugarhouse, Valley Fair.) (Feb. 18, 1994)

CHASERS - turkey - Dumb comedy, a gender variation on "The Last Detail," with crusty veteran Tom Berenger and hotshot sailor William McNamara (doing a Tom Cruise imitation) as Navy shore patrolmen assigned to transport a sexy female prisoner (Erika Eleniak, of "Under Siege" and "The Beverly Hillbillies"). Poorly directed by Dennis Hopper, who has a cameo. R (violence, sex, nudity, profanity, vulgarity). (Family Center, Sugarhouse, Valley Fair.) (April 27, 1994)

CLEAN SLATE - * 1/2 - Dana Carvey makes a good comic leading man, but the script and direction fail him in his latest bid for movie stardom, a farce about a Venice, Calif., detective who wakes up each morning with a complete loss of memory - an obvious variation on "Groundhog Day." Valeria Golino, James Earl Jones and Kevin Pollak co-star. PG-13 (violence, sex, profanity, vulgarity, brief partial nudity). (Century, with "3 Ninjas Kick Back"; Cottonwood, Gateway, Midvalley; Redwood, with "Ace Ventura, Pet Detective"; South Towne, Trolley Square.) (May 6, 1994)

COPS AND ROBBERSONS - * 1/2 - Stupid Chevy Chase farce about a mild-mannered suburbanite who dreams of being a TV cop, and then his suburban home becomes a stakeout point for tough cop Jack Palance. Chase does an even dumber spin on his "National Lampoon's Vacation" character, and Dianne Wiest, as his wife, is wasted. Palance does manage a couple of chuckles through sheer hamminess. PG (violence, nudity, profanity, vulgarity). (Olympus Starships; Redwood, with "3 Ninjas Kick Back"; Sandy 9, with "Threesome.") (April 17, 1994)

CROOKLYN - * * 1/2 - Enjoyable, episodic and somewhat maddening semi-autobiographical comedy-drama from Spike Lee (he directed, produced, co-wrote and has a small role), about growing up in Brooklyn during the 1970s, told through the eyes of a 10-year-old girl (Zelda Harris). Harris is great, as are Alfre Woodard and Delroy Lindo as her parents, but Lee indulges himself with too many gimmicks, and there are stretches that are just annoying. The final third is quite touching, however. PG-13(violence, profanity, vulgarity, drugs). (Broadway, Century, Holladay, Midvalley, Sandy 9.) (May 13, 1994)

THE CROW - * * - Brandon Lee was accidentally shot to death during the filming of this comic book movie, which gives an extra, if eerie layer of texture to this fantasy-thriller about a murder victim who rises from the dead to take revenge on his killers. Interesting visually, but unsatisfying in terms of story. R (violence, gore, profanity, vulgarity, sex, nudity). (Broadway, Century, Holladay, Plaza 5400; Redwood, with "Death Wish V: The Face of Death"; Sandy 9, Trolley North.) (May 13, 1994)

D2: THE MIGHTY DUCKS - * 1/2 - Silly sequel/remake of "The Mighty Ducks," with Emilio Estevez and his underdog Minnesota peewee hockey team joining the Junior Goodwill Games in Los Angeles. Strictly for kids. PG (violence, vulgarity). (Cinemas 5; Murray and Olympus Starships, with "White Fang 2: Myth of the White Wolf"; Sandy 9, with "Major League II.") (March 25, 1994)

DEATH WISH V: THE FACE OF DEATH - Charles Bronson is back in the fourth sequel in this 20-year-old series, this time with pacifist-turned-vigilante Paul Kersey going after a Manhattan mobster (Michael Parks) who guns down his fiancee (Lesley-Anne Down). R (violence, profanity, sex). (Exclusive, Redwood, with "The Crow").

8 SECONDS - * * * - Luke Perry (of TV's "Beverly Hills 90210") is very good in this sentimental, true story of rodeo bull-rider Lane Frost, who was killed at age 25 after becoming the world champion. The story is a bit strained in places, but the rodeo footage is exciting and the supporting cast is excellent. PG-13 (profanity, vulgarity, sex, violence). (Cinemas 5, South Towne, Trolley North; Valley Vu, with "Grumpy Old Men.") (Feb. 25, 1994)

FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL - * * * - Delightful, frequently hilarious English romantic comedy, a genuine throwback to screwball farces of old (despite too much R-rated language), with charming, womanizing Hugh Grant falling for American Andie MacDowell as they bump into each other at the title affairs. Rowan Atkinson (TV's "Mr. Bean" and "The Black Adder") has a hysterical supporting role as a novice priest. R (profanity, sex, vulgarity). (Century, Creekside, Midvalley, Sandy 9, Trolley Corners, Trolley North.) (April 8, 1994)

GRUMPY OLD MEN - * * * 1/2 - This hilarious farce (though it is quite raunchy in places) has Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau as bickering curmudgeons living next door to each other in a Minnesota suburb. They find something new to fight about when alluring, eccentric Ann-Margret moves in across the street. Riotous, very well cast - but decidedly adult. (And don't leave before the credits are completely over.) PG-13 (profanity, vulgarity, sex, comic violence). (Sugarhouse; Valley Vu, with "8 Seconds.") (Dec. 24, 1993)

GUARDING TESS - * * * - This character-driven comedy-drama is sort of "Driving Miss Daisy" with politics instead of race relations, as an ill-tempered former first lady (Shirley MacLaine) makes life miserable for the stiff, by-the-book Secret Service agent (Nicolas Cage) assigned to protect her. The finale, a misguided kidnapping plot, is unfortunate, but most of the way this is funny, touching stuff. PG-13 (violence, profanity, vulgarity). (Family Center, Kaysville, Sandcastle, Sandy Starships, Sugarhouse, Valley Fair.) (March 11, 1994).

HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN'S THUMBELINA - * * * - Animator Don Bluth ("The Land Before Time," "An American Tail") is back in form with this fantasy about a tiny young woman who falls in love with the prince of the fairies but finds herself spirited away by an amorous toad and a dancing beetle. Not likely to cross over to adult audiences, a la "Aladdin," but good fun for kids. G. (Saturday matinees only, Sandcastle; Valley Fair.) (March 31, 1994)

THE HUDSUCKER PROXY - * * * 1/2 - Eccentric, twisted and funny old-fashioned comedy patterned after the social farces of of the '30s, with the offbeat sensibilities of the filmmaking Coen Brothers ("Raising Arizona," "Barton Fink"). Tim Robbins is a rube in 1950s Manhattan who lands a mailroom clerk job at Hudsucker Industries and immediately finds himself promoted to president, thanks to the evil machinations of Paul Newman. Great performances; eye-popping set design. PG (violence, profanity, vulgarity). (Broadway, South Towne.) (April 8, 1994)

THE INKWELL - * 1/2 - Simple-minded second film from Matty Rich, whose first, the low-budget "Straight Out of Brooklyn," was a hit at the Sundance Film Festival three years ago. This variation on "The Summer of '42" is set in the summer of '76, with a goofy teen learning about life (and sex) in "The Inkwell," a strip of beach at Martha's Vineyard for upscale black vacationers. Some good moments but wildly uneven and ultimately disappointing. R (profanity, vulgarity, nudity, sex). (Flick, Plaza 5400.) (May 13, 1994)

LIGHTNING JACK - * * - Disappointing Paul Hogan vehicle - he stars in, wrote and co-produced this cowpoke comedy, best described as " `Crocodile' Dundee Goes West." Hogan is a bungling outlaw with a fast gun, and his laconic screen persona still works. Cuba Gooding Jr., as his mute sidekick, is even better, often stealing the show. But the film is too lethargic and settles for recycled gags. PG-13 (violence, profanity, vulgarity, sex, nude paintings). (Sugarhouse, Valley Fair.) (March 11, 1994)

MAJOR LEAGUE II - * * - Some scattered laughs help but this sequel is really just a retread of the first film. The Cleveland Indians once again find themselves in the cellar and then unexpectedly climb back to the top. Charlie Sheen, Tom Berenger, Corbin Bernsen and Bob Uecker return, with Omar Epps taking over the Wesley Snipes' old role. PG (profanity, violence). (Redwood, with "Maverick"; Sandy 9, with "D2: The Mighty Ducks.") (March 31, 1994)

MRS. DOUBTFIRE - * * 1/2 - When it's funny, this Robin Williams vehicle is very funny. But it's also overly sentimental, far too long (more than 2 hours) and blatantly steals from "Tootsie." Successful San Francisco designer Sally Field divorces out-of-work actor Williams, so he masquerades as an elderly woman and lands the job of housekeeper in his own home. Uneven, but there are some hilarious moments. (Sugarhouse.) (Nov. 25, 1993)

MONKEY TROUBLE - * 1/2 - Boring children's comedy about a young girl befriended by a trained monkey, unaware that the little creature is a thief and pickpocket. Thora Birch ("Patriot Games," "All I Want for Christmas") stars, with Mimi Rogers as her mother and Harvey Kietel, in a horrid stereotype, as the Gypsy who trained the monkey. PG (violence, a couple of mild profanities). (Cinemas 5.) (March 18, 1994)

MY FATHER THE HERO - * 1/2 - Appallingly tasteless teen farce with French superstar Gerard Depardieu as a befuddled father who takes his neglected 14-year-old daughter on vacation in the tropics, where she concocts a wild story about him being her lover, hoping to impress a 17-year-old boy. Depardieu manages a few chuckles, but the film is obnoxious and the camera leers at the girl in her thong bikini. PG (violence, profanity, sex, partial nudity). (Sugarhouse, Valley Fair.) (Feb. 10, 1994)

MY GIRL 2 - * * 1/2 - Anna Chlumsky is wonderful as now 13-year-old Vada, spending her 1974 spring break in Los Angeles searching for information about her late mother. Dan Aykroyd and Jamie Lee Curtis also return as her father and stepmother, though their appearances are merely bookends, with most of the story taking place in L.A. PG (profanity, marijuana smoking). (Kaysville.) (Feb. 11, 1994)

NO ESCAPE - * * - Some good action sequences bolster this otherwise routine sci-fi thriller that looks a bit too much like the "Mad Max" movies, with Ray Liotta as a convicted murderer sentenced to the most secure prison in the world, only to discover that the warden places his hardest cases on an illegal island penal colony where they must fend for themselves against savages. R (violence, profanity). (Creekside, Midvalley; Redwood, with "Surviving the Game"; Reel, South Towne.) (May 4, 1994)

ON DEADLY GROUND - turkey - Atrocious big-budget directing debut by Steven Seagal casts him as an environmentally correct oil rigger out to stop corrupt oil tycoon Michael Caine from despoiling Alaska . . . though Seagal destroys a lot of the tundra with explosive devices along the way. Idiotic and unintentionally funny. R (violence, gore, profanity, vulgarity, nudity). (Valley Fair.) (Feb. 20, 1994)

THE PAPER - * * * 1/2 - Highly entertaining comedy-melodrama in the tradition of rough-and-tumble newspaper flicks from director Ron Howard ("Splash," "Parenthood"), whose high-powered ensemble cast includes Michael Keaton, Glenn Close, Robert Duvall, Randy Quaid and Marisa Tomei. The focus is 24 hours in the life of a New York tabloid, in particular Keaton and Quaid's scramble to beat the competition with a hot story. Great fun. R (violence, profanity, vulgarity). (Trolley Square.) (March 25, 1994)

THE PELICAN BRIEF - * * - Extremely disappointing adaptation of John Grisham's popular novel about two U.S. Supreme Court justices being assassinated and the young law student (Julia Roberts) who comes up with a theory about who may have done it and why. But when it threatens to entangle the White House, she finds herself on the run. Roberts and Denzel Washington are too low-key and the film is sluggish and slow - and nearly 21/2 hours long. PG-13 (violence, profanity, sex). (Kaysville.) (Dec. 17, 1993)

PHILADELPHIA - * * * - Tom Hanks won an Oscar for his role here as an in-the-closet gay lawyer who develops AIDS. The story has him being fired by the law firm he works for, so he hires homophobic Denzel Washington to sue for discrimination. Washington is also superb, gradually changing as the film progresses, and in support, Mary Steenburgen and Jason Robards are also good. The final third, set in a courtroom, gets a bit preachy and routine but this is stirring stuff most of the way. PG-13 (profanity). (Family Center, Sugarhouse, Valley Fair.) (Jan. 14, 1994)

THE REMAINS OF THE DAY - * * * * - Superb, meticulously crafted look at social mores in pre-World War II England, as seen through the eyes of Anthony Hopkins, the head butler at an elaborate manor, and Emma Thompson, whom he hires as the housekeeper. Another stunning achievement from the Merchant-Ivory team ("Howards End," "A Room With a View"). PG (nothing offensive). (Avalon, with "Shadowlands.") (Nov. 5, 1993)

THE SCENT OF GREEN PAPAYA - * * * 1/2 - A lovely, visually stunning and deceptively simple drama - the first Vietnamese film to be nominated for an Oscar as best foreign-language picture - about a servant girl who comes to live in a wealthy home in Saigon in 1951. Her ability to enjoy life's simplest pleasures, despite her life of drudgery, makes for utterly enchanting . . . and thought-provoking . . . cinema. In Vietnamese, with English subtitles. Not rated, probable PG (mild vulgarity). (Exclusive, Tower.) (May 6, 1994)

SCHINDLER'S LIST - * * * * - Superlative moviemaking from Steven Spielberg, who dug deep into his soul - and finally won his Oscar - for this three-hour-plus, black-and-white epic true story. A stark look at the Holocaust through the eyes of a complex, decidedly unheroic German Nazi who ultimately saved more than 1,100 Jews from the death camps. Liam Neeson is superb in the title role, Ben Kingsley is very good as the Jewish accountant who becomes his conscience and Ralph Fiennes is chilling as the monstrous Nazi commandant whom Schindler manipulates. And in the end it is surprisingly uplifting. A dozen Oscar nominations, each well-deserved; winner of seven, including best picture and director (Spielberg). R (violence, sex, nudity, profanity, vulgarity). (Century, Holladay, Reel, South Towne, Trolley Square.) (Jan. 7, 1994)

SHADOWLANDS - * * * 1/2 - Wonderful, low-key romantic melodrama, with director Richard Attenborough ("Gandhi," "Chaplin") toning down his usual excesses. Celebrated English author C.S. Lewis (Anthony Hopkins) finds his cloistered 1950s world at Oxford disrupted by a brassy New Yorker (Debra Winger) with whom he unexpectedly falls in love. What starts as comic turns tragic, however, as fate steps in. PG (nothing offensive). (Avalon, with "The Remains of the Day"; Kaysville.) (Jan. 7, 1994)

SURVIVING THE GAME - * * - Yet another variation on the oft-filmed "Most Dangerous Game," with a strong central performance by Ice-T as a despondent homeless man who becomes the prey for a group of wealthy big-game hunters who want to track down and kill a human. Rutger Hauer, Gary Busey and F. Murray Abraham co-star as stereotyped hunters and once it gets going it's little more than a series of violent episodes. R (violence, gore, profanity, vulgarity, drugs). (Redwood, with "No Escape.") (May 4, 1994)

3 NINJAS KICK BACK - * 1/2 - Dreary sequel to "The Three Ninjas" has the young karate kicking trio traveling to Japan, where they battle more bad guys in "Home Alone" fashion. Low humor may appeal to youngsters, but parents will be looking at their watches. PG (violence, vulgarity). (Century, with "Clean Slate"; Gateway, Holladay, Plaza 5400; Redwood, with "Cops and Robbersons"; Reel, South Towne, Trolley Square.) (May 11, 1994)

THREESOME - turkey - Piffle that purports to explore sexual politics but merely exploits them instead. Josh Charles and Stephen Baldwin are mismatched college roommates whose third roomie is a woman, Lara Flynn Boyle, thanks to a computer error. At first she balks at the prospect, but it isn't long before the title can be taken literally. R (sex, nudity, profanity, vulgarity). (Redwood, with "Bad Girls"; Sandy 9, with "Cops and Robbersons.") (April 8, 1994)

WHEN A MAN LOVES A WOMAN - * * * - Despite the expected cliches that are impossible to avoid in one more movie about alcoholism, Meg Ryan's astonishing performance is well worth the ticket price. Andy Garcia is also excellent as her husband, who helps her come out of her alcoholic stupor but then doesn't know how to be supportive during her rehabilitation. Unique and ambitious in its efforts to show how alcoholism affects other family members. R (profanity, vulgarity, sex, violence). (Crossroads, Gateway, South Towne, Plaza 5400, Reel, Villa.) (May 13, 1994)

WHITE FANG 2: MYTH OF THE WHITE WOLF - * * - This Disney family sequel looks more like "Dances With Wolves" crossed with "Indiana Jones" than "White Fang," with its story of a young gold miner being taken in by an Alaskan Indian tribe, which believes he is destined to end a famine. Strictly for small fry. PG (violence, gore, profanity). (Murray and Olympus Starships, with "D2: The Mighty Ducks"; South Towne.) (April 15, 1994)

WITH HONORS - * * 1/2 - A homeless man (Joe Pesci) links up with a Harvard senior (Brendan Fraser), teaching him - and his roommates (Moira Kelly, Patrick Dempsey, Josh Hamilton) - the value of street smarts over academics. Predictable but enjoyable, until it bogs down in sentiment toward the end. PG-13 (profanity, vulgarity, veiled nudity, violence). (Cottonwood, Crossroads, Gateway, Midvalley, Sandy 9.) (April 29, 1994)