THE DUKES OF HAZZARD (PG-13, 106 minutes)
Loud, crude, fast-moving and dumb, "The Dukes of Hazzard" is one of those late-summer guilty pleasures -- well, maybe not exactly a pleasure, but a decent doofus flick offering a few cheap yuks. It is nowhere near as clever or funny as the naughtier and more profane (and suitably R-rated) "Wedding Crashers." It does, however, push its PG-13 boundaries to the ragged edge, rendering the rating meaningless, as "The Dukes of Hazzard" is largely inappropriate for middle schoolers. High schoolers, however, who like action flicks with major destruction of property -- especially cars -- and broad humor full of nudge-nudge sexual innuendo will have a giggle.
The movie contains barnyard profanity and stronger oaths, crude references to body parts and considerable sexual innuendo. Co-stars Seann William Scott and Johnny Knoxville, as boisterous Georgia cousins Bo and Luke Duke, respectively, flirt with buxom, often scantily clad female college students and in one case smoke pot with them (off-camera, but there is no doubt). Cousin Daisy Duke (Jessica Simpson) in her exceedingly brief short-shorts and bikini tops, talks of "shaking" her behind to get men to do her bidding -- not great role model advice. A couple start to rip off their clothes in one bawdy kissing scene, but it ends comically. Along with high-speed car chases, there are head-banging bar fights and the whole plot premise about the Dukes' moonshine business. Not surprisingly, some characters drink.
Bo and Luke happily evade the law while delivering homemade hooch for Uncle Jesse (Willie Nelson), and Bo is looking forward to the next big Hazzard road race to show off his beloved Dodge Charger, the souped-up General Lee (a Confederate flag painted on its roof). Life is good until the local crooked politico, Boss Hogg (Burt Reynolds, who else?) tries to get the Dukes arrested for bootlegging and makes a grab for their land.
BROKEN FLOWERS (R, 106 minutes)
Bill Murray creates another of his terrific minimalist characterizations in "Broken Flowers," somehow lending an emotionally shut-down character nuance and complexity, humor and pathos. He and gifted indie writer-director Jim Jarmusch prove a fine team in telling this story of an aging bachelor playboy drifting through life. Only the most thoughtful high school cinema buffs 16 and older likely will warm to the tale, told in an artful and engaging way, but in a slow, episodic, deliberately repetitive style. Though a relatively mild R, "Broken Flowers" earns its rating for one scene of frontal nudity laden with subtle sexual innuendo when a teenage girl flaunts herself before an older man. The film also contains profanity, an implied one-night stand between adults, other milder sexual innuendo, drinking and a character smoking what appears to be marijuana.
Murray plays Don Johnston, a depressive computer millionaire, surprised when his girlfriend (Julie Delpy) walks out, then unnerved by an anonymous letter from an ex-lover, telling him that they have a son from their long-ago liaison and that the 19-year-old might come to find him. Don's nice, nosy friend and neighbor (Jeffrey Wright) arranges for him to visit ex-girlfriends from 20 years ago to deduce which one wrote him. The women (Sharon Stone, Frances Conroy, Jessica Lange, Tilda Swinton) each react differently to him, and the experience shakes him deeply.