Thursday, November 10, 2011

Weekend Movie Guide

"Immortals" - Henry Cavill, Mickey Rourke, John Hurt
A mortal man (Cavill) is tasked by the gods with stopping a powerful warrior (Rourke) and saving the world. A cross between 300 and Clash of the Titans, Immortals has received a massive advertising campaign with the trailer running for the better part of a year and the title plastered across anything and everything that would accept the studio's money. There are a number of people whose opinions I respect that are excited about Immortals looks horrible to me as it comes across as total style over substance. I'm slightly intrigued on the basis of wanting to see Cavill, whom I know very little about, in a major role before the new Superman film opens in 2013 but that's really about it.

Value: $4 It looks like this film will be visually compelling but I think it's going to struggle to find an audience, at least in the US, and the early reviews have been disparaging.

"J. Edgar" - Leonardo DiCaprio, Armie Hammer, Naomi Watts
A controversial biographical look at FBI leader J. Edgar Hoover (DiCaprio). You cannot ask for a better pedigree than the one enjoyed by J. Edgar and yet I've smelled a rat, so to speak, from the beginning. There is just something off in the trailer and while I can't quite put my finger on it, it left me feeling like this film wouldn't measure up to its potential. More than anything, I think J. Edgar wreaks of dissatisfaction and I can't really sum it up any other way. DiCaprio is ALWAYS great, of course, but most reviews I've seen pinpoint his performance as the one real bright spot. I think I'll pass.

Value: $4 Given a rough Rotten Tomatoes score (40%), I think we can safely say this is the first real bust of Awards Season.

"Jack and Jill" - Adam Sandler, Al Pacino, Katie Holmes
When his annoying sister (Sandler) comes for an extended visit, a commercial director (also Sandler) seizes the opportunity to get a celebrity (Pacino) to work with him. Here's what I don't get about Sandler: he's still funny. When I see him on talk shows or in various other interviews, he still makes me laugh. Then he routinely turns out crap like this and I'm left to wonder if it's not some sort of sick joke he's playing on all of us. At the end of the year, I can guarantee you that he'll have had a hand in at least two of the five worst reviewed movies of the year (this one and Bucky Larson) and both Zookeeper and Just Go With It have an outside shot at the top ten. That's a ROUGH year. And yet, he'll make serious money off of all of them (except Bucky Larson) and despite the pile of rubbish he's been a part of over the last few years, Rotten Tomatoes reports that 75% of voters are still want to see this movie. There has to be some sort of voodoo at work here, no?

Value: $0 If you are over the age of 13 and you want to see this movie, I'm going to kindly ask that you stop reading the content of this site. It's not for you.

"Melancholia" - Kirsten Dunst, Kiefer Sutherland, Charlotte Gainsbrough (Limited)
As another planet threatens to crash into our own, two sisters (Dunst, Gainsbrough) struggle to maintain civility during one's wedding. I'm torn on this one. I dislike the films of Lars von Trier and I think find him personally to be an artsy version of Brett Ratner. But Meloncholia is getting extremely strong reviews, this cast is incredible, and I'm digging the sci-fi-mixed-with-drama trend that's making its way through the indie circuit right now. Plus, there are so very few meaningful female performances these days and by all accounts Dunst gives one here.

Value: $7 Can't get behind it wholeheartedly but I'm hopeful. Also, if you have HDNet, I believe Melancholia will be available to you this weekend. 

"London Boulevard" - Colin Farrell, Keira Knightley, Ray Winstone (Limited)
An ex-con (Farrell) finds that his relationship with an actress (Knightley) has caused more trouble than he'd bargained for. With an excellent cast and a potential-laden new director (William Monahan who wrote The Departed), I thought London Boulevard might be worth a shot. Alas, most reviews have been quite harsh and this looks like another failed attempt to follow in the footsteps of Guy Ritchie.

Value: $1 Maybe on Netflix but nothing else. 

"Into the Abyss" (Limited)
Director Werner Herzog delivers a powerful documentary made up of interviews with Texas death row inmate Michael Perry and a look at the death penalty itself. Regardless of your position on this issue, Into the Abyss promises to give an honest look at our system and opens up a very serious discussion. Plus, Herzog knows how to make a documentary (see: Grizzly Man, Cave of Forgotten Dreams).

Value: $8 Definitely worth a look again, no matter what your stance might be.

"11-11-11" - Timothy Gibbs, Michael Landes, Brendan Price
From the guy who brought you three of the Saw films, comes the obligatory horror film related to the unique numbering on the calendar. I'm just not even going to bother summing this one up because let's be honest: if you're going to see 11-11-11, you're going to see it regardless of what I say here and if you're not, nothing I say here will convince you to check it out. It is what it is.

Value: $2 I'm just guessing here as I have no idea if 11-11-11 has any chance of being worthwhile. I supposed a hundred million horror movie fans can't be wrong about the genre as a whole but I'll pass.

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