Upcoming Theatrical Releases
This is Where I Leave You
Director: Shawn Levy
R; 103 mins.
The dramatic comedy “This is Where I Leave You” is directed by Shawn Levy, and based on the hilarious and poignant best-selling novel by Jonathan Tropper. It features a starring ensemble cast including Golden Globe winner Jason Bateman (“Arrested Development”); Golden Globe and Emmy Award winner Tina Fey (“30 Rock”); and two-time Oscar (R) winner, multiple Golden Globe honoree and 2013 Emmy Award nominee Jane Fonda (“Klute,” “Coming Home,” HBO’s “The Newsroom”). (Synopsis by Warner Bros.)
It doesn’t live up to the strength of the cast, but you could do worse for a “safe” comedy choice. It is filler that is will elicit little more than a chuckle. Something to watch on TBS in a few months. Rent it.
The Maze Runner
Director: Wes Ball
PG-13; 114 mins.
When Thomas wakes up trapped in a massive maze with a group of other boys, he has no memory of the outside world other than strange dreams about a mysterious organization known as W.C.K.D. Only by piecing together fragments of his past with clues he discovers in the maze can Thomas hope to uncover his true purpose and a way to escape. Based upon the best-selling novel by James Dashner. (Synopsis by Fox)
It is engaging in a way that many young adult movies aren’t—a low budget, story-focused way. It isn’t quite up to “Hunger Games” territory, but it is a significant improvement over some of the lesser money grabs using this premise. See it.
A Walk Among the Tombstones
Director: Scott Frank
R; 114 mins.
Based on Lawrence Block’s bestselling series of mystery novels, A Walk among the Tombstones stars Liam Neeson as Matt Scudder, an ex-NYPD cop who now works as an unlicensed private investigator operating just outside the law. When Scudder reluctantly agrees to help a heroin trafficker (Dan Stevens) hunt down the men who kidnapped and then brutally murdered his wife, the PI learns that this is not the first time these men have committed this sort of twisted crime…nor will it be the last. Blurring the lines between right and wrong, Scudder races to track the deviants through the backstreets of New York City before they kill again. (Synopsis by Universal)
Check out my review later this weekend on The Dagger.
Director: Kevin Smith
R; 102 mins.
When podcaster Wallace Bryton goes missing in the backwoods of Manitoba while interviewing a mysterious seafarer named Howard Howe, his best friend Teddy and girlfriend Allison team with an ex-cop to look for him. (Synopsis by IMDB)
This podcast joke doesn’t seem to know where it is going—too much of this film is a wink and nudge to the audience. The comedy isn’t all that funny and the horror isn’t all that scary. It is fairly gory; be warned. Skip it.
Upcoming DVD Releases
The Fault in Our Stars
Director: Josh Boone
PG-13; 125 mins.
Hazel and Gus are two extraordinary teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them – and us – on an unforgettable journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous, given that they met and fell in love at a cancer support group. THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, based upon the number-one bestselling novel by John Green, explores the funny, thrilling and tragic business of being alive and in love. (Synopsis by Fox)
A heartbreaker that peaks too many times for the resonance to really set in. Yet this is a surprisingly high-quality film for the genre, even when it shamelessly manipulates the audience for emotional reaction. See it.