Thursday, December 15, 2011
Weekend Movie Guide
Director: Guy Ritchie (Sherlock Holmes, Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels)
The sequel to 2009's smash hit finds Holmes (RDJ) and Watson (Law) pursuing thie most ingenious adversary, Professor Moriarty (Harris), through a series of wild and outlandish plot twists. As I said in my Monday column, it came as a surprise to me to learn that a lot of people did not like the first Sherlock. The early reviews have been less positive than I would have imagined and suddenly we're left to wonder how well this movie will perform with audiences. That said, I really, really enjoyed Sherlock and I expect to enjoy this as well. In my mind, this is basically a comic book movie, a genre that I usually appreciate even if it doesn't generate much critical acclaim.
Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol - Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg
Director: Brad Bird (The Incredibles)
After his team is implicated in a major international incident, Ethan Hunt (Cruise) is forced to do what he does best: go rogue. My anticipation for this movie has grown with each and every viewing of the outstanding trailer(s). Even still, I am shocked at the overwhelmingly positive reception it has received. This just isn't the type of film that critics usually get on board with but that's exactly what's happened (so far). I'm probably waiting until next week when MI4 opens in regular theaters (I'm slightly afraid of IMAX screens; I have no reason for this) but I'm hoping the good vibes keep a'comin'.
Side note: Why didn't one of the studios involved with the aforementioned films grab a Thanksgiving slot this year instead of opening against the other? There was a decided lack of action available post-turkey this year and anyway, the audience for Sherlock and MI4 is essentially the same group, right? Dumb.
Carnage - Jodie Foster, Christoph Waltz, Kate Winslet, John C. Reilly
Director: Roman Polanski (Chinatown, The Pianist)
Based upon a play by screenwriter Yasmina Reza, Carnage centers around two sets of parents who get together to discuss a school-yard fight between their children and end up in a heated confrontation themselves. I can't figure this one out. The trailer would have me believe this is a dark comedy but Roman Polanski isn't exactly known for his comedic chops. The cast is outstanding but none of them are "absolutely must get to the theater" names for me. And it seems like would-be Oscar bait which is always a risky proposition. I have no idea what to expect out of this one. You're on your own.
Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked - Justin Long, Jason Lee, David Cross
Director: Mike Mitchell (Sky High)
While on a cruise, Alvin and his cohorts fall overboard and wash up on a deserted island where they, like, sing or something. You know how some theater in Washington has made texting acceptable within a certain section of their theater? I feel like theaters should offer a similar service to parents who are forced to take their children to see a Chipmunks movie. Maybe they should hand out iPads that play Scorsese movies or Dumb and Dumber or something, anything, to distract from the awfulness that undoubtedly will be running across the scree. Sorry, parents.
A documentary about the career of legendary B-movie creator Roger Corman, Corman's World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel sounds like an entertaining choice on Netflix in a few weeks...Anson Mount (Hell on Wheels) returns from prison to find his home has been turned into a drug lab in Cook County...and Young Adult expands into wider release.