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Movie websites

Movie websites–We rate the webpages for ”Scream 3,” ”Hanging Up,” ”Boiler Room,” and ”Heart of Love”

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Movie websites

Scream 3 (www.scream3.com)
The third installment of the sly slasher series gets a rich, sharply designed website. The ”official” Sunrise Studios section offers job opportunities (”Experience not necessary but lack of ego is a plus”) and a faux filmography (including, in addition to the Stab series, Tailpipe, Frankenpimp, and Amazombies). There’s a secondary ”unofficial” site, sunrisesucks.com, where an aggrieved hacker lays out the real dirt about the fictional studio (drug use, power struggles, possibly murder). Even intrepid reporter Gale Weathers gets her own site (www.galeweathers.com), full of flattering reviews (”Weathers’ book is as thorough as she is attractive”), plans for her upcoming exposes (”the prison lives of former child celebrities; an entire week dedicated to ‘outing’ gay celebrities”), and are-they-real? interviews (e.g., director Roman Bridger rhapsodizing about his hip-hop musical, Calling All Homies). A site to make you shriek — with delight. A

Hanging Up (www.spe.sony.com/movies/hangingup)
Attempting to reach out and touch filmgoers, Sony offers a gimmicky yet underdeveloped site, organized — like the Diane Keaton-directed film itself — around the telephone. In commenting on their semiautobiographical comedy, cowriters Nora and Delia Ephron offer far too many explanations of the prevailing symbolism (Delia: ”The phone becomes the metaphor for both being connected and for disconnecting — for hanging up”); elsewhere, original comic strip Disconnected provides a couple of tepid vignettes about communication difficulties. Still, there’s one novel connection here: The site’s creators have formatted a version especially for Web browsers in cell phones. Now that’s a contact high. B-

Boiler Room (www.boilermovie.com)
New Line’s brokers-go-berserk tale — think Glengarry Glen Ross, junior division — takes its dramatic data public via a site filled with monetary motifs: a faux stock ticker (with the symbols derived from the actors’ names), brokerage-ready blurbs (”Investing alone doesn’t make you rich. People do. We do. Unload your pockets”), and a little actual acumen in the form of links to business e-mags (Red Herring, Upside Today) and investment sites (Raging Bull, Silicon Investor, Motley Fool). Once you’re up to speed, take the quiz in which ”prospective employees” are ”evaluated” on their approach to such ethical issues as ”A friend has a serious substance abuse problem. A. It is your duty as a friend to intervene. B. As long as they are amusing, it’s their problem. C. You stop returning their calls. D. You join them.” What would Gordon Gekko do? B+

Heart of Love (www.holthemovie.com)
You could call it art for heart’s sake: Blair Witch directors Dan Myrick and Ed Sanchez have left behind the severe elegance of their Witch site for this elaborately whimsical production, dedicated to the experimental comedy they’re planning to release next. As before, they present their tale of religious hallucinations with an almost-straight face, including ”documentary evidence” (sample caption: ”Mr. Shuster states that the ‘heart-shaped’ cloud formation seen in the photo was traveling upwind…. He claims to have heard ‘singing voices’ as the cloud passed by”). There’s even a link to a related site (www.lovians.com) that looks suspiciously ridiculous. Despite all this ultra-slick design, the concept lacks, well, heart: It seems oddly fitting that the site’s virtual tour of the filmmakers’ HQ ultimately leads nowhere. C