Saturday, September 25, 2010

New Releases - Week of October 1st

Starring: Jessie Eisenberg, Justin Timberlake, Andrew Garfield, 
Joe Mazzello & Rashida Jones
Directed by David Fincher for distribution by Columbia Pictures (Sony)


The Plot: The story behind the rise of the Facebook social networking phenomenon and the trouble sudden fame brought to its creator.
The Final Word: As if a movie about one of the world’s topic website wasn’t going to be enough of a draw by itself, the movie comes with a great pedigree that could put into contention this award season. Aside from a talented young cast, the movie was directed by David Fincher, of “Fight Club” fame and written by “West Wing” creator Aaron Sorkin.  

Starring: Kodi Smidt-McPhee, Chloe Moretz, Richard Jenkins & Elias Koteas,
Directed by Matt Reeves for distribution by Overture Films


The Plot: A young bullied and neglected boy (Smidt-McPhee) befriends his equally troubled young neighbor (Moretz), only to find her and her father (Jenkins) are hiding a deadly and disturbing secret.
The Final Word: It must be October! Here comes the next wave of films designed to creep out audiences across the world. Normally for a horror film to be successful there are a few rules the filmmakers must follow, but the majority of those tenants typically become a moot point when Halloween comes around. Although without a “name” cast and one of the bigger studios behind it, “Let Me In” could have trouble finding its ground, especially with the latest installments of “Saw” and “Paranormal Activity” coming down the pike.

Starring: Renee Zellweger, Jodelle Ferland, Ian McShane & Bradley Cooper
Directed by Christian Alvart for distribution by Paramount


The Plot: A social worker (Zellweger) takes a special interest in a 10 year girl (Ferland) who she saved from seemingly abusive parents, only to find this particular child brings dark threatening supernatural forces everywhere she goes.
The Final Word: Again, it must be October! Although this movie brings a interesting back story as it was shot in 2006 and just now seeing the light of day after strong international showings.  Audiences love to be scared during the Halloween season, but it could be rough sledding with a heavy slate of new and returning competition at the Cineplex.

Previewed next week: Life As We Know It, Secretariat,  Buried, Stone, My Soul To Take

Saturday, September 18, 2010

New Releases - Week of September 24th

Starring: Michael Douglas, Shia LaBeouf, Josh Brolin, Frank Langella,
Carey Mulligan, Susan Sarandon
Directed by Oliver Stone for distribution by 20th Century Fox

The Plot: After being released from prison, former business mogul Gordon Gecko (Douglas) tries to climb his way back into the life his lost, using a young ambitious Wall Street trader (LaBeouf), who also happens to be engaged to his estranged daughter (Mulligan).
The Final Word: In 1987, Oliver Stone and Michael Douglas taught audiences that “Greed is Good.”  Now over 20 years later, we get another lesson from two masters at their craft.

Starring: Kristen Bell, Jamie Lee Curtins, Sigourney Weaver, Odette Yustman,
Kristen Chenoweth, Victor Garber, Betty White
Directed by Andy Fickman for distribution by Touchstone (Disney)

The Plot: After putting her horrendous high school experiences behind her, a young woman (Bell) learns her brother is about marry the girl (Yustman) who made her life miserable.
The Final Word: This definitely seems like a Disney movie, but there’s no denying the studio clearly has the formula down pact by this point. The movie also has no shortage of talented female actresses including the incomparable Betty White.

Starring the voices of: Emily Barclay, Abby Cornish, Emile de Ravin,
Ryan Kwanten, Helen Mirren,Sam Neill, Richard Roxburgh,
Geoffrey Rush, Jim Sturgess, Hugo Weaving
Directed by Zack Snyder for distribution by Warner Brothers


The Plot: A young Owl finds that is up to him and his friends to track down a legendary group of protectors who will help them defeat a great evil in their world.
The Final Word: Warner Brothers knows it has almost reached the end of the “Harry Potter” gravy train and for years they have been trying to find the young wizard’s successor.  They are hoping this is it! At first look, this animated adaptation of Kathryn Lasky's children books honestly don’t seem like the next big thing, but look closer and there are few intriguing elements. For one, the director is Zach Synder, who’s very adult “300” and “Watchmen” scaled new heights at the box office. If Snyder is willing to go “G” there has to be something here to make him change gears. The movie is also in 3D and after the watching the trailer I’m convinced it is merited. This isn’t a example of a studio looking to jack up prices for a lousy product. Watch this one closely…it could be interesting.

Previewed next week: The Social Network, Let Me In, Buried

Saturday, September 11, 2010

New Releases - Week of September 17th

Starring: Chris Messina, Geoffrey Arent, Logan Marshall-Green, Bokeem Woodbine,
Bojana Novakovic, Jenny O’Hara, Jacob Vargas
Directed by John Erick Dowdle, Drew Dowdle for distribution by Universal Pictures

The Plot: Five people trapped in an elevator come to realize one of them is not who they claim to be and may in fact be the devil in disguise.
The Final Word: Written and produced by M. Night Shyamalan, the movie has slowly been building buzz over the last few weeks. With the Sixth Sense director looking to re-claim his title as king of the of the psychological thriller, you can bet he’ll pull out all the stops to get back to the top of the box office.

Starring: Emma Stone, Penn Badgley, Amanda Bynes, Thomas Haden Church,
Patricia Clarkson,Cam Gigandet, Lisa Kudrow, Malcolm MacDowell,
Aly Michalka, Stanley Tucci
Directed by Will Gluck for distribution by Screen Gems (Sony)

The Plot: After being inspired by “The Scarlett Letter,” a social outcast (Stone) decides to alter her forgettable reputation to change everyone’s perception of her and others.
The Final Word: Simply put Emma’s character makes people believe she sleeps around in a attempt to help her “un-cool” classmates gain a little bit of misplaced popularity. It’s a fun concept and Stone looks to be poised to become a break-out star. Regardless of how the movie does, Gluck and his crew deserve props for shaking up a genre that has gone stale.

Starring: Ben Affleck, Rebecca Hall, Jon Hamm, Jermey Renner, Chris Cooper
Blake Lively, Pete Postlethwaite
Directed by Ben Affleck for distribution by Warner Brothers

The Plot: A career thief (Affleck) begins to fall for a teller (Hall) at a bank he just hit, but soon finds his feelings for her creating a rift between him and his crew, just as a determined investigator (Hamm), begins to close in.
The Final Word: In the vein of “The Departed” and “Mystic River” comes another dark drama set in Massachusetts. Ben Affleck, stars and directs this heist thriller which pits him against two of Hollywood’s hottest “it” actors Jeremy Renner and Jon Hamm.  Although have audiences tired of the Boston crime drama and its native son? Affleck’s 2007 directorial debut “Gone Baby Gone,” also set in Beantown under-performed at the box office, but did net an Academy Award nomination for actress Amy Ryan.  A lot of hinges on this movie not only for Affleck, but his co-star Blake Lively, who could soon be looking at world with “Gossip Girl.”

Starring the voices of:  Justin Long, Hayden Panettiere, Dennis Hopper, Danny Glover
 Larry Miller, Vicki Lewis, Christina Ricci
Directed by Anthony Bell & Ben Gluck for distribution by Lionsgate

The Plot: Two Canadian wolves (Long, Panettiere) separated from their packs and re-located to Idaho, begin a cross-country journey home.
The Final Word: Lionsgate has pulled some incredible hits out of his hat over the last few years, but very few (if any) have been animated. This just seems like a strange gamble for the studio to take, but seeing as how the movie is in 3D, I guess the studio wanted to dip there toe in the water prior to the upcoming “Saw 3D” slated for October.  Although they will only have one week to make a splash as Warner Brother’s 3D epic “Legends of the Guardians” flies into theatres on the 24th.

Previewed next week:  Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, You Again, Legends of the Guardian

Saturday, September 4, 2010

New Releases - Week of September 10th

Starring: Milla Jovovich, Ali Larter, Kim Coates, Shawn Roberts,
Boris Kodjoe, Wentworth Miller
Directed by Paul W.S. Anderson for distribution by Screen Gems (Sony)


The Plot: Alice (Jovovich) returns to help survivors of the deadly “T” virus find refuge in the fourth installment in this franchise based on the video game series of the same name. Re-teaming with her ally Claire (Larter), the pair believes they’ve finally located a safe haven, but upon arrival learn they are walking straight into a trap, possibly set by the evil Umbrella Corporation.
The Final Word: Plot went out the window a long time with this popular franchise, but with a new 3D element added in, audiences probably won’t care as long they get to feel like the movie’s signature zombies are coming out of the screen towards them.

Previewed next week: Alpha & Omega, Easy A, Devil,  The Town