Josh Wolk
December 08, 2000 AT 05:00 AM EST

Now we know what ”casting couch” means. Actors flirt with roles, and we pass judgment without leaving our couch.

CONFESSIONS OF A DANGEROUS MIND (Renaissance Films)
STAR Mike Myers as The Gong Show cocreator-host Chuck Barris
VERDICT Playing Steve Rubell in 54, Myers proved he can rein in the shtick. Plus, Gene Gene the Dancing Machine makes a perfect Maxi-Me. B+

RIPLEY’S GAME (Fine Line)
STAR John Malkovich takes over for Matt Damon in a 20-years-later follow-up to The Talented Mr. Ripley.
VERDICT Does anyone play quietly simmering menace better than Malkovich? All sociopaths should age this well. A

SCOOBY-DOO (Warner Bros.)
STAR Matthew Lillard (Scream) as a live-action version of perennial beatnik Shaggy
VERDICT Gangly enough to walk the walk, and goofy enough to zoink the zoinks. Ruh-roh, Casey Kasem, there’s a new dog’s-best-friend in town! A-

VAMPIRES: LOS MUERTOS (Screen Gems)
STAR Jon Bon Jovi as a fang hunter in the sequel to John Carpenter’s Vampires
VERDICT If nothing else, the role is ripe for song parody: ”Wanted Undead or Alive”? Perhaps ”Weird Al” Yankovic can do the soundtrack. C+

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