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Weaver, Hewitt Play <I>Heartbreakers</I>

Carrie Underwood accepts the award for album of the year for her album "Some Hearts" at the 42nd annual Academy of Country Music awards in Las Vegas on May 15, 2007.
AP Photo/Mark J. Terril
Look at the poster for Heartbreakers, particularly the evilly mischievous look on Sigourney Weaver's face. It's one of those what-I'm-doing-may-not-be-right-but-it-sure-is-fun looks that promises a very good time doing very bad things, the kind that makes a morning-after hangover, missing wallet and empty bank account almost worth it.

It's fitting that it's Weaver who hints of the kind of fun that might be found in that movie, which debuts this weekend. As actresses go, she doesn't have quite the cache that Meryl Streep, Jessica Lange or Sally Field carry with them, but look back over her career and you see that she's made excellent choices, giving some extraordinary performances in a diverse field of very solid — and often excellent — films.

There's action (the Aliens series), comedy (Working Girl, Dave, Galaxy Quest, Ghostbusters), and serious drama (The Year of Living Dangerously, Half Moon Street, Gorillas in the Mist, The Ice Storm, Death and the Maiden). There's almost nothing she hasn't done, and done well. If Weaver doesn't quite get the raves that Streep, Lange, etc. receive, it's perhaps because she doesn't indulge in the showy Method-ish techniques that can add to an actor's reputation. She's more subtle than that, and most extraordinarily, continues to find very good roles at age 51 in an industry that can be very unkind to middle-aged actresses.

In Heartbreakers, Weaver plays a Max, one-half of a mother-daughter con artists team. She marries rich men, her daughter seduces them, and she collects on the divorce. The movie co-stars Gene Hackman and Ray Liotta as the rich suckers, and Jennifer Love Hewitt plays the daughter. It will be interesting to see whether Hewitt, who was the Gidget of the 1990s, has the acting chops to hang in with Weaver, Hackman and Liotta. Her last attempt at playing a serious adult role (as Audrey Hepburn in a TV movie) got laughed off the screen.

You have to wonder, too, if this movie will go the way of Ruthless People — lots of laughs, the more vulgar the better — with a PG-13 rating.

No questions about vulgarity surround Say It Isn't So: you can be pretty sure that it's vulgar and then some. Produced by the Farrelly brothers (Dumb and Dumber, There's Something About Mary), Say It Isn't So is about a guy (Chris Klein) who falls for the woman of his dreams (Heather Graham), then finds out that she just might be his sister. Although the iea of the Farrelly brothers taking incest on as a punchline is a little frightening, they're generally best when they go too far. Say It Isn't So is rated R.

The Brothers looks like the kind of movie Spike Lee's been campaigning for, for decades (but wouldn't necessarily make himself): it's about four young men, Upper Middle Class African-Americans, and how they all came to face (or avoid) marriage. Director Gary Hardwick dubbed it "Refusing To Exhale." Lee, who has long criticized movies for only portraying blacks as drug dealers or worse, must be smiling. It's rated R and stars D.L. Hughley, Bill Bellamy, Shemar Moore and Morris Chesnut.

By NICK SAMBIDES Jr