Ricky Gervais, Shia LaBeouf and Keira Knightley face ghosts, terrorists, and Ralph Fiennes, respectively.

Which is the bigger headache: being pestered by ghosts, or terrorized by an evil cell phone caller?

Ricky Gervais sees dead people in the well-reviewed dramedy 'Ghost Town,' while Shia LaBeouf is forced into all kinds of terrorism in the tech-thriller 'Eagle Eye.'

And then there's Keira Knightley, who doesn't have it all that easy either as Ralph Fiennes' ridiculed wife in her latest costume drama, 'The Duchess.'



a href="http://www.moviefone.com/movie/ghost-town/30389/main">'Ghost Town'
What It's About: Ricky Gervais is a curmudgeonly dentist who, after dying for seven minutes during surgery, sees dead people (like Greg Kinnear). And you guessed it -- they want something.

Critical Consensus: The relatively quiet release garnered impressively strong reviews, with an 84 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Actor to Watch: 'SNL' star Kristen Wiig makes the most out of a bit part as a nurse.

We Say: Maybe those critics had really low expectations, because this is a so-so dramedy (and one that's way too light on the "medy" part). Whereas Gervais was hilariously unlikable in the BBC's 'The Office,' here he's just unlikable.

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'Eagle Eye'
What It's About: Shia LaBeouf gets forced into all sorts of terrorism by an evil and mysterious cell phone caller. The only upside? So does hottie Michelle Monaghan.

We Say: 'Disturbia,' LaBeouf's first collaboration with director D.J. Caruso, was a pleasant surprise, but their reunion is neither pleasant nor surprising.

Recommended If You Liked: 'Cellular'; 'Phone Booth'; 'One Missed Call'; 'Untraceable' (etc)

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'The Duchess'
What It's About: Keira Knightley plays Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, a socialite who was like the Paris Hilton of 18th Century England (only charming, talented and likable).

Awards & Nominations: He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named Ralph Fiennes earned a Golden Globe Best Supporting Actor nod for his convincing turn as Georgiana's crude husband.

We Say: Like too many Oscar bait dramas this year, this one is more noteworthy for its performances than anything, but it's a stirring historical soap opera in the same vein as 'The Tudors.'

Where It Ranks: 'Duchess' is #41 on our list of the year's 50 best movies.

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Other New Releases This Week:
'Towelhead'
'Baghead'
'Surfer, Dude'
'An American Carol'

Recent DVD Highlights

    'Burn After Reading'
    Release Date: Dec. 21
    What It's About: Two bumbling gym employees (Brad Pitt and Frances McDormand) attempt to blackmail a bumbling ex-spy (John Malkovich) when they find a lost disc. A bumbling George Clooney co-stars.
    What We Say: As far as the Coen brothers oeuvre goes, it falls smack dab in the middle of 'Fargo' (being their best) and 'Ladykillers' (their worst).
    Add to Netflix queue | Read Coen brothers Q&A

    Focus Features

    'American Teen'
    Release Date: Dec. 21
    What It's About: Documentarian Nanette Burnstein follows five Indiana high school seniors -- and each fits perfectly into a classic stereotype.
    What We Say: It's an amusing, heartfelt, incredibly entertaining portrait of Middle America High, complete with heroes (we love you, Hannah!) and villains (damn you, Megan Krizmanich).
    Add to Netflix queue | Watch exclusive DVD clip

    Paramount Vantage

    'The Dark Knight'
    Release Date: Dec. 9
    What It's About: You already know. But for fun: A vigilante dresses up like a flying rodent (Christian Bale) and battles a man even crazier, the Joker (Heath Ledger).
    What We Say: There's a reason this baby made $530 million at the box office, second only to 'Titanic' all time: It rocks. Now bring on the posthumous Oscar for Heath.
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    Warner Bros.

    'Horton Hears a Who!'
    Release Date: Dec. 9
    What It's About: The unlikely relationship between an elephant (voiced by Jim Carrey) and the specks of dust on his back.
    What We Say: Thank you Hollywood for finally animating Dr. Seuss! (Anyone else still suffer bad 'Cat in the Hat' flashbacks?). 'Horton' is sweet, charming and a treat to watch.
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    Fox

    'Man on Wire'
    Release Date: Dec. 9
    What It's About: The amazing story of Frenchman Philippe Petit, who tightrope-walked between World Trade Center towers in 1974.
    What We Say: The best-reviewed film of all time, according to RottenTomatoes.com, this doc combines interviews and actual footage with impressively non-corny reenactments, and is 100% breathtaking.
    Add to Netflix queue | Watch trailer & clips

    Magnolia

    'Wanted'
    Release Date: Dec. 2
    What It's About: An everyday Joe (James McAvoy) is recruited by a secret society of assassins who kill to orchestrate fate ... which is determined by a loom.
    What We Say: It's all style, no brains (see Loom of Fate); both ridiculously cool and just-plain ridiculous. Those with a low threshold for nonsensical plots be warned. The rest of us can just sit back and enjoy the ride.
    Add to Netflix queue | Read James McAvoy Q&A

    Universal

    'Step Brothers'
    Release Date: Dec. 2
    What It's About: Two 40-something man-children (Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly) become siblings first, enemies second, and finally, BFFs.
    What We Say: This proudly vulgar comedy doesn't always work, but there are enough moments of hilarity to recommend a DVD viewing. (Warning: Contains disturbing images of Will Ferrell's bits.)
    Add to Netflix queue | Watch Ferrell-Reilly Unscripted

    Sony

    'WALL-E'
    Release Date: Nov. 18
    What It's About: A post-apocalyptic tale for families! Only Pixar could pull off the touching story of a robot left to clean up an uninhabitable, abandoned Earth.
    What We Say: The film's strong eco-messages may go over kiddies' heads, but grown-up viewers have hailed it a masterpiece. It's no doubt Pixar's most ambitious and unique movie to date.
    Add to Netflix queue | Watch the trailer

    Disney/Pixar

    'Tropic Thunder'
    Release Date: Nov. 18
    What It's About: Spoiled actors (including Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr. and Jack Black) shooting a war movie find themselves in an actual battle.
    What We Say: When was the last time there were so many brilliant performances in a comedy? Tom Cruise and others kill in cameos, but this movie belongs to a black Robert Downey Jr.
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    Paramount

    'Kung Fu Panda'
    Release Date: Nov. 9
    What It's About: A roly-poly panda (Jack Black) inadvertently becomes the Kung Fu Master chosen to save the Valley of Peace.
    What We Say: Jungle animals doing martial arts? Sounds like it could be cute and funny ... for a few minutes, at least. But 'Panda' is heartfelt and hilarious, and one of the year's best surprises.
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    Paramount

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