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On Demand movie picks

NIM’S ISLAND ★★ ½

(Comcast Movie Collections: Fantasy Lands) An engaging if overcooked fantasy about a castaway-island girl (Abigail Breslin) and the agoraphobic San Francisco novelist (Jodie Foster) who comes to her rescue. Foster lets her hair down in a rare comedy role, and the island critters (heavily abetted by CGI) are cute; children will enjoy it wholeheartedly. With Gerard Butler as both Breslin’s marine biologist father and the fictional adventure hero of Foster’s books. (PG; runs through March 13) TY BURR

TROPIC THUNDER ★★★

(Comcast Movie Collections: Action-Packed Laughs) It only sounds like a Thai porno. Really it’s a war movie within a comedy. Five actors - Ben Stiller, Robert Downey Jr., Jack Black, Jay Baruchel, and Brandon T. Jackson - playing soldiers caught behind enemy lines in Vietnam actually wind up behind enemy lines and assume that somehow they’re still being filmed. (R; runs through March 27) WESLEY MORRIS

DIRTY DANCING ★★★

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(Comcast Movies: All Movies) A Catskills “Flashdance’’ with heart. The sizzle in its dance sequences helps overcome its generic formula flavor and its last-flowering-of-Kennedy-era-liberalism spirit compensates for some clumsy writing in the 1963 coming-of-age story. Jennifer Grey is terrific as a fiery little mensch eager to experience sex. Patrick Swayze and Cynthia Rhodes are sympathetic as the blue-collar dancers, overcoming the working-class cliches with which their characters are saddled. (PG-13; runs through April 1)

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