BAD SANTA (Terry Zwigoff) is supposed to be a literal, figurative and emphatic kick in the balls to Saint Nick, but the audience feels beat up by the end of it. Billy Bob Thornton plays a lecherous booze hound who dons the red suit in order to fleece department stores. Given the sickly sweet quality of most holiday films, an unapologetically anti-Christmas flick with a refreshingly feel-bad approach has been a long time coming. Unfortunately, the message's delivery (if one anal-sex joke works, try another) never quite lives up to its intentions or to the pedigree of its cast - Bernie Mac, John Ritter - and production team. Director Zwigoff and producers the Coen Brothers should offer an embarrassment of riches. This is merely embarrassing. 93 min. NN (Lori Fireman) Opens Nov 28 at 401 & Morningside, 5 Drive-In Oakville, Beach Cinemas, Carlton, Courtney Park 16, Eglinton Town Centre, Elgin Mills, First Markham Place, Grande - Steeles, Interchange 30, Kennedy Commons, Paramount, Queensway, SilverCity Mississauga, SilverCity Newmarket, SilverCity North York, SilverCity Richmond Hill.
CRIME SPREE (Brad Mirman) is the directorial debut of mediocre American screenwriter Mirman (Body Of Evidence and at least two movies starring Christopher Lambert). This cross-cultural thriller stars Gérard Depardieu and Johnny Hallyday as French hoods sent to Chicago to steal some jewels. Of course, everything goes awry when they find the stuff belongs to a local mob underboss (Harvey Keitel) and they may have been set up! Clichés galore, though the cast almost salvages the picture. Almost. At best, a future renter when they're all out of a movie you really want to see. 90 min. NN (JH) Canada Square
SHATTERED GLASS (Billy Ray) - See cover story. 95 min. NNN (CB) Opens Nov 28 at Canada Square, Grande - Yonge.
21 GRAMS (Alejandro González Iñárritu) - See review 125 min. NNNN (JH) Opens Nov 28 at the Varsity.