Hot Sheet: Cruise, Shears, and Hate Crimes
Knight and Day — Tom Cruise will either sink or swim in his latest attempt to prove his box office validity, an action-comedy in which he plays a secret agent who recruits the help of Cameron Diaz after he realizes he isn’t supposed to survive his latest mission. Reviews have been lukewarm, and tracking scores show audiences aren’t that into Cruise anymore. Still, for fluffy summer fare, it promises to deliver.
Grown Ups — Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock, David Spade, and Rob Schneider play 40-something shlubs with wives who are way too hot for them (Maria Bello, Salma Hayek) in this midlife crisis comedy taking place over a Fourth of July weekend getaway. If men with out-of-control egos are your cup of tea, line on up.
Out in the Silence — A harrowing account of an intensely personal battle waged by the mother of a popular 16-year-old boy who is brutally attacked for being gay at his small-town high school in Oil City, Pa. This compelling documentary premiered in New York June 21 at the Human Rights Watch Film Festival, and more screenings and PBS broadcasts are scheduled around the nation.
Night Work by Scissor Sisters — It's more tales of debauchery set to pounding beats for the Sisters' third album, coming out Tuesday. The good-time group gets extra points for the Robert Mapplethorpe cover art.
Staring Down the Brilliant Dream by the Indigo Girls — Goheads will get a fill with this two-disc live collection of 31 songs, including "Closer to Fine," "Love of Our Lives," and a cover of the Rolling Stones' weeper "Wild Horses." Out Tuesday.
Everwood: The Complete Third Season — Gay Brothers & Sisters creator Greg Berlanti honed his skills at realistically portraying a family in crisis on Everwood, which tackled a number of touchy topics during its run, including drug addiction, AIDS, and sexual abuse. Brothers & Sisters star Emily VanCamp got her start on this show, with Berlanti writing her and costars Treat Williams and Scott Wolf some meaty, touching material.
The Maid — This black comedy masterpiece from out director Sebastián Silva focuses on the life of domestic helper Raquel, played with malicious conviction by Catalina Saavedra. After 23 years with the same Chilean family and plagued with health problems, Raquel is at the breaking point. When the family hires an au pair to ease the stress, Raquel declares war.
Soundless Wind Chime — Beautiful scenery (the film was shot in Beijing, Hong Kong, and Switzerland) and a haunting score help to elevate this sometimes lethargic tale of men who seem to be in love and at odds at the same time. Yulai Lu is great as Ricky, but Bernhard Bulling is handsome if a bit flat in dual roles as an abused soul in Hong Kong and a shy shopkeeper in Switzerland, both lovers of Ricky, and director Wing Kit Hung builds to an exciting conclusion.
Fifth Avenue, 5 a.m.: Audrey Hepburn, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and the Dawn of the Modern Woman by Sam Wasson — More than just a compendium of minutiae (some well-known: Marilyn Monroe was the first choice to play Holly Golightly, some not: leading man George Peppard was despised on set) surrounding the beloved Truman Capote novella and the 1961 film adaptation, Wasson draws on interviews with producers and Capote biographers to present a fascinating peek into why the sophisticated tale continues to hold us under its spell. (HarperStudio, $19.99)
I Was Born This Way by Carl Bean — In this often amusing and illuminating autobiography, named for his disco anthem and subtitled A Gay Preacher's Journey Through Gospel Music, Disco Stardom, and a Ministry in Christ, the Motown artist-turned-evangelist tracks his journey from the music charts to the pulpit. Along the way Bean found time to become a renowned AIDS activist and respected community leader. (Simon & Schuster, $24),
She Looks Just Like You: A Memoir of (Nonbiological Lesbian) Motherhood by Amie Klempnauer Miller — One lesbian always imagined herself as a mother, but never in the role of a nonbiological stay-at-home,mom. Miller shares her sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes uplifting tale about searching for her new identity as a parent and partner in her 18-year relationship, where everything is suddenly brand-new. (Beacon, $24.95)