Earth (2009) ***½ This first feature from Disney's new nature division has an encyclopedic reach and spectacular footage shot by more than two dozen crack cinematographers.
Good Dick (2008) **½ Alternately compelling and dramatically limp, the film scores points for exploring unfamiliar territory but lacks the emotional depth to make some very strange behavior believable.
Sin Nombre (2009) **** There are some brief minutes when the tension drops and the story starts to sag, but filmmaker Cary Joji Fukunaga almost always fills the frame with something worth seeing, and the story has a built-in suspense.
State of Play (2009) *** The overall lack of subtlety is a riot — there's even a cautionary production of Peter and the Wolf happening in the background during one journalist-politician showdown at a Beltway gala. Still, it's a pleasure watching this cast make the most of the material.
Sugar (2009) **** The film's style is so "objective" it's a bit subdued, yet this is a sports drama of total originality, as well as the most authentic inside view of the immigrant experience the movies have given us in quite a while.