'Salt,' 'Ramona and Beezus': New Movies to Watch This Weekend, July 23

Sona Charaipotra
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Angelina Jolie in Salt

Angelina Jolie brings her seasoned action chops to the otherwise bland Salt. Hangin' with the little ones? The new adaptation of Beverly Cleary's classic series, Ramona and Beezus, starring Selena Gomez, is sure to thrill 'em -- and you, if you've read the books.

Salt (Sony Pictures)

This Bourne Identity-esque Russian spy thriller -- is she or isn't she? We won't know till the end -- was originally supposed to star Tom Cruise. But the fact that it's a female -- and, very specifically, Angelina Jolie -- doing the ass-kicking and jumping from bridges is what sets this otherwise tired action movie apart from the clones. But Charlie's Angels this ain't. Jolie stars as Evelyn Salt, a CIA operative accused of being a latent Russian spy, in this adrenaline-heavy but emotionally empty thriller. Jolie is at center stage here, with her eye-popping stunt work, but the rest of the talented cast, including Liev Schreiber and Chiwetel Ejiofor, is wasted in her daunting shadow.

Ramona and Beezus (Fox)

Beverly Cleary's beloved children's book series, which she introduced way back in the 1950s, gets a timely update here as the Quimby clan faces the recession and dad Robert -- played by Sex and the City 2 hunk John Corbett -- loses his job and the family worries about losing their home. Naturally, energetic and rambunctious Ramona plans to save the day -- by selling lemonade and washing cars, and causing lots of chaos along the way, much to her overachiever big sister's chagrin and her family's amusement. Newcomer Joey King is impressively fitting as flighty and fancy-free Ramona, the mischievous dreamer to Disney star Selena Gomez's more staid and solid older sister Beezus. This is a fun, frothy confection to be sure, but moms who take their kids will get some eye-candy out of it, at the very least. Along with the easy-on-the-eyes Corbett, Las Vegas' Josh Duhamel shows up as bumbling uncle-wannabe Hobart.

Check out the trailer here:

What will you be watching this weekend?


Image via Sony Pictures

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