I never really thought much of Rosario Dawson until I saw her in The 25th Hour (it might have been from previously seeing her in execrable messes like Men in Black II and The Adventures of Pluto Nash), but now she’s probably one of my favorite young actresses, striking an ideal balance of beauty and talent.  It’s a really short list.

Dawson is spreading her splendid gifts in a pair of new Weinstein Co. flicks, including the adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s crime novel Killshot from director John Madden (Shakespeare in Love, which I still can’t believe won a Best Picture Oscar).  The film stars Tom Jane as an average guy who, along with his wife, gets involved in an extortion scheme and ends up on the run from his former associates. Unfortunately the couple never saw Eraser, and they soon discover that even the Witness Protection Program isn’t a very safe place.  The movie, exec produced by Quentin Tarantino, also stars Mickey Rourke, Johnny Knoxville and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who seems to be getting along much better than his former 3rd Rock from the Sun co-stars.

Dawson, who also has another trip to Sin City in her future, will also shake her tasty mocha blend in a sequel I care far less about than sequels to Hollow Man and Road House, Kevin Smith’s cash-in follow-up The Passion of the Clerks.  I hope the jokes in the movie are better than the title.  How could they not be?

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