Recently reviewed films now showing in area theaters:

Bigger, Stronger, Faster (PG-13) This refreshingly balanced documentary from rookie director Chris Bell apes the style of Michael Moore minus the glib self-righteousness. Bell's exploration into the world of steroid use goes beyond professional sports and into the lives of everyday Joes. Whatever your position going in, you'll exit more enlightened. 3 stars - Michael Clark

Get Smart (PG-13) Instead of the camp, tongue-in-cheek approach of the '60s sitcom on which it is based, "Get Smart" opens with dry slapstick, then, unfortunately, veers off into typical action/adventure territory. Steve Carell as Maxwell Smart and Anne Hathaway as Agent 99 give obligatory nods to their TV secret agent counterparts while also lending their characters edge and nuance. 21/2 stars - MC

The Happening (R) One-hit-wonder director M. Night Shyamalan ("The Sixth Sense") continues his nearly decade-long backslide with this mostly inept eco-thriller. A limp Mark Wahlberg and Zooey Deschanel play a married couple on the skids who try to escape what appears to be an airborne toxin that drives its victims to commit suicide. 1 star - MC

The Incredible Hulk (PG-13) Heads and shoulders beyond Ang Lee's 2003 version, this "Hulk" benefits from a stronger cast, just enough cerebral navel-gazing and some atypical action storytelling techniques. Some might feel the second half goes a little too far with the over-computerized special effects, but this is, after all, a summer popcorn movie. 3 stars - MC

Kit Kittredge: An American Girl (G) Abigail Breslin stars as the plucky title character, an overachieving, Nancy Drew sort, whose drive to be a journalist is sidetracked by her middle-class family's pressures in dealing with the Great Depression. A supporting cast of overdrawn, adult characters tries to lighten the somber tone, but goes too far in the other direction. 2 stars - MC

The Love Guru (PG-13) Mike Myers' pathetic, offensive and largely unfunny comedy spoof on New Age mysticism is by far the worst film of his exceedingly average career. He stars as Pitka, an obnoxious self-help wanna-be who is charged with repairing the bruised psyche of a hockey player in time to win the Stanley Cup playoffs. Jessica Alba and Justin Timberlake co-star. 1/2 of 1 star - MC

Mongol (NR) A 2007 nominee for Best Foreign Language Picture, "Mongol" waffles back and forth between reflective, artsy character study and bloody, "Braveheart" war epic. The first installment in a planned trilogy on the life of Genghis Khan, it provides stunning visuals, yet ultimately sabotages itself with a sometimes confusing, out-of-sequence narrative. 21/2 stars - MC