Here's a sampling of our panel's opinions on some of the films that opened recently:

' Tropic Thunder' 2 1/2 stars (fair-good)

Momgreenbem: This movie was terrible. I don't know how it ever got three stars. I do not know how anyone as talented as Ben Stiller could direct/write/produce and act in such a piece of garbage. I also found it difficult to understand Robert Downey Jr. People in the audience were laughing, so maybe it is just me. Could it be that this movie is not suitable for the over-65 age group?

' Star Wars: The Clone Wars' 2 stars (fair)

Young at Heart: What I hoped would be a good film turned out to be a real mess, no better than some of the junk seen on Saturday morning TV. Its commercialism was evident. Why can't they leave a good thing alone? Let the children grow up on the original from which it was fashioned.

'Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2' 3 stars (good)

Bicycleboy: I am ashamed to say I enjoyed this movie. Go with your wife or girlfriend or niece or a female friend--you couldn't really tell your buddy that you wanna go, or that you liked it. Better yet, tell your girlfriend that you want to see some horrible movie that you know she will hate, let her talk you into this one. You both will enjoy the movie and you will get good-guy bonus points.

' Bottle Shock' 3 stars (good)

Young at Heart: This was a real sleeper. The truth of the story gave it credence, and the performances are quite good. Here's a toast: "Long live American wines." Definitely worth a try.

' Pineapple Express' 2 stars (fair)

ValerieL: What a crazy story! Too much violence, but it worked. ... The true surprise was James Franco. His comedic ability was smokin'! Hopefully there is more to come.

' American Teen' 2 1/2 stars

Bicycleboy: A nice high school story. Much nicer than my high school years. Maybe wanting to be included in a film made these kids 10 times more mature than I was in high school.

' Swing Vote' 2 stars

Liz: In the movies, impossible events become possible events. This time you have to suspend your disbelief that actually one man's vote would decide an election of a president of the United States. Kevin Costner is a common man thrust into this political limelight. It is always fun to see two opposing political parties connive, scheme and manipulate anything to their advantage. There is always an element in movies that reflects real life. Food for thought. Madeline Carroll playing Molly the daughter is an actress to watch.

' The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor' 1 1/2 stars

Young at Heart: Another opening, another action sequel. I am getting tired of these action sequels and find nothing to say about this one. It is all in the title. What is needed is some originality.

'The X-Files: I Want To Believe' **

Reda: It is nice to see an "X-Files" movie after such a long break. It doesn't matter whether you watched the series or not. If you like sci-fi, you should enjoy it.