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DON'T 'SEE SPOT RUN'

"See Spot Run" (PG, 1 hour, 35 minutes)

"See Spot Run," about a trained FBI dog who's the target of a mob hit, is howlingly bad, with fewer laughs than a trip to the vet. Aimed at grade school kids, it's too violent for preschoolers and toddlers. The movie features crude humor of the usual scatological kind and a gross gag about the dog biting off a gangster's privates.

"The Mexican" (R, 2 hours, 3 minutes)

Both a caper comedy and shaggy-dog story, "The Mexican" could easily drop 20 minutes, but even in its bloated form high-schoolers will likely deem it a real hoot. Ascribe that to likably loopy turns by Julia Roberts and Brad Pitt as the romantic leads and James Gandolfini as a sensitive hit man. The film bristles with bloody, loud, point-blank gunplay and strong profanity, as well as a suicide story, making it inappropriate for teens under high-school age. There are sexual innuendo, toilet humor, smoking and drinking.

Beyond the ratings game

PG-13s:

"Monkeybone": Uneven, bawdy, often hilarious, hugely inventive live action/animated farce stars Brendan Fraser as cartoonist near death in purgatory of his own nightmares. Rampant sexual innuendo; death, afterlife spoofed; doctors harvest organs from fleeing corpse; toilet humor; mild profanity. Not for preteens, some younger teens.

"Sweet November": Workaholic ad exec (Keanu Reeves) is smitten with latter-day flower child (Charlize Theron). Sexual innuendo; steamy sexual situations; profanity, crude language; theme of grief and loss. Not for preteens.

"The Wedding Planner": Jennifer Lopez as workaholic wedding planner, Matthew McConaughey as groom-to-be fight mutual attraction. Rare profanity; mild verbal sexual innuendo; visual joke involving manly bits of nude statue; drunkenness.

Rs:

"Hannibal": Anthony Hopkins as serial killer Hannibal Lecter, Julianne Moore as FBI agent in sequel to "The Silence of the Lambs." Artful yet gruesome deaths by hanging, disemboweling, throat-slitting; infant endangered; wild boar attack; disfigured face; explicit sexual innuendo; profanity. 16 and older.

"Traffic": Michael Douglas as U.S. drug czar whose daughter's an addict, in dissection of drug war. Occasional strong violence; sexual situations -- one explicit; teens on drugs; profanity; drinking, smoking. Some Spanish with subtitles. High-schoolers.

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