Theatrical Releases This Week
Director: David Gordon Green
When the world’s most irresponsible babysitter takes three of the world’s worst kids on an unforgettable overnight adventure through the streets of New York City, it’s anyone’s guess who’s going to make it home in one piece. The Sitter is a new level of twisted and debauched hilarity from the director of Pineapple Express, starring Jonah Hill. (Synopsis from the official movie Web site)
This week’s theme: “Movies that aren’t getting screened for critics because they are terrible.” I’m not sure what’s more disappointing, that this movie got made or that this is the project Max Records took after a starring turn in “Where the Wild Things Are.” This will be big for Jonah Hill fans (they exist, right?), but everyone else should stay away.
New Year’s Eve
Director: Garry Marshall
New Year’s Eve celebrates love, hope, forgiveness, second chances and fresh starts, in the intertwining stories told amidst the pulse and promise of New York City on the most dazzling night of the year. (Synopsis by Warner Brothers)
How do you explain the world coming together on one night? More importantly, how do you explain this many celebrities agreeing to make this? This was a
great movie when it was called “Love, Actually.” And an even worse one when it was called “Valentine’s Day.” To all the boyfriends getting dragged to this, consider it a down payment for this.
DVD Releases This Week
Cowboys and Aliens
Director: Jon Favreau
1875. New Mexico Territory. A stranger (Craig) with no memory of his past stumbles into the hard desert town of Absolution. What he discovers is that the people of Absolution don’t welcome strangers, and nobody makes a move on its streets unless ordered to do so by the iron-fisted Colonel Dolarhyde (Ford). It’s a town that lives in fear. But Absolution is about to experience fear it can scarcely comprehend as the desolate city is attacked by marauders from the sky. Now, the stranger they rejected is their only hope for salvation. As this gunslinger slowly starts to remember who he is and where he’s been, he realizes he holds a secret that could give the town a fighting chance against the alien force. (Synopsis by the official move Web site.)
No amount of special effects can overcome poor directing and writing. This one had as much talent involved as “Transformers,” only replacing robots with aliens. Skip!
The Hangover Part II
Director: Todd Phillips
In The Hangover Part II, Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms), Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and Doug (Justin Bartha) travel to exotic Thailand for Stu’s wedding. After the unforgettable bachelor party in Las Vegas, Stu is taking no chances and has opted for a safe, subdued pre-wedding brunch. However, things don’t always go as planned. What happens in Vegas may stay in Vegas, but what happens in Bangkok can’t even be imagined. (Synopsis by Warner Brothers)
Remember when you were a kid and you’d wait all year for Christmas? You’d run down the stairs and tear open the biggest package under the tree only to find a combo pack of socks and underwear? This is socks and underwear.
Director: Tate Taylor
The Help stars Emma Stone as Skeeter, Viola Davis as Aibileen and Octavia Spencer as Minny-three very different, extraordinary women in Mississippi during the 1960s, who build an unlikely friendship around a secret writing project that breaks societal rules and puts them all at risk. From their improbable alliance a remarkable sisterhood emerges, instilling all of them with the courage to transcend the lines that define them, and the realization that sometimes those lines are made to be crossed-even if it means bringing everyone in town face-to-face with the changing times. (Synopsis by Dreamworks)
For the select group of people that want to pretend to deal with their feelings of white guilt without actually doing much about them, “The Help” offers an ideal compromise. The film seems to do more to strengthen racial stereotypes than dispel them.
Mr. Poppers Penguins
Director: Tate Taylor
In this family comedy, Jim Carrey is Mr. Popper, a driven businessman who is clueless when it comes to the important things in life – until he inherits six penguins. Popper’s penguins turn his swank New York apartment into a snowy winter wonderland – and the rest of his life upside-down. Filmed on a refrigerated soundstage with real Emperor Penguins, Mr. Popper’s Penguins is a contemporary adaptation of the classic book. (Synopsis by Fox)
In a movie season that is filled with much better family fare, you would be better served to spend your money elsewhere. Unless you really enjoy watching Jim Carey standing around watching penguins, you aren’t missing anything.