Hey everyone, we survived the January doldrums! And it wasn’t too bad either, cinematically speaking… Daybreakers and Youth In Revolt were pretty damn good while The Book of Eli and Edge of Darkness also managed to be fairly solid. (But the less said about Leap Year, The Spy Next Door, Tooth Fairy, and Extraordinary Measures the better.) So what types of films does February have in store for us? Pretty much a bit of everything actually… although I don’t know as any of them will find their way onto Top Ten lists at the end of the year.
Who? Directed by Lasse Hallestrom, written by Jamie Linden from a novel by Nicholas Sparks; starring Amanda Seyfried and Channing Tatum
What? A soldier from a top secret government agency called GI Joe falls for a blond Mormon girl. One will die…
Why should you care? I don’t actually know if one of them dies, but considering the source material is Sparks (The Notebook, Message In a Bottle) it’s probably a safe bet. Tatum and Seyfried play a couple who meet and fall for each other in a short period of time and are then forced by circumstance and war to build their relationship long distance. My guess is that since he’s in combat and therefore the most likely to die she’ll be the one to kick the bucket instead.
Who? Directed by Pierre Morel, written by Adi Hasak from a story by Luc Besson; starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers and John Travolta’s Giant Head
What? A low level CIA newbie finds himself paired with the agency’s #1 loose cannon played by the grinning, goateed, and disembodied head of Travolta…
Why should you care? The only reason to care really is that Morel also directed last year’s surprise action hit Taken with a grumpy, ass-kicking Liam Neeson. This flick looks even more ridiculous and over the top which can only be a good thing right? Personally I can’t stand Travolta when he overacts (or when he acts period I guess), so I’m not ashamed to admit I skipped a screening of this one in favor the Lost season premiere. I mean, when Battlefield Earth is the man’s most subdued role in the last decade you know there’s a problem.
Watch the Trailer:
In Limited Release:
District B13: Ultimatum- Post apocalyptic France is once again filled with two types of people… evil government stooges and guys who do parkour.
Frozen – Three friends get trapped on a ski lift when the resort closes for the weekend. Seems like a poor business model… killing your guests is bad enough but closing on the weekend?
Red Riding Trilogy- This is some pretty impressive modern film noir in trilogy form from the UK. All three films (1974, 1980, 1983) are currently hitting select theaters across the US, and it’s worth the five hour plus time investment. (My review of 1974 is here.)
Shinjuku Incident – Jackie Chan washes away the terrible aftertaste of The Spy Next Door with this gritty R-rated dramatic thriller. No pratfalls or kid-safe shenanigans here… instead expect violent amputations, bloody assassinations, and Chan doing the horizontal mambo with a white woman. (My review here.)
Who? Directed by Chris Columbus, written by Craig Titley from a novel by Rick Riordan; starring Pierce Brosnan, Sean Bean, Steve Coogan, Catherine Keener, Rosario Dawson, Kevin McKidd, and Joe Pantoliano as the Greek god Gabe
What? A young man discovers his genetic heritage includes an origin of supernatural design and finds himself battling gods, wooing the girl, and making water…
Why should you care? There are a few reasons why you may care but none really that say you really should. For one, this is based on a series of bestselling children’s books. For two, Columbus is also the director that started the Harry Potter film franchise. (And he also directed Cole Abaius’ favorite film from 2009.) And for three, if it does well we may be looking at the next big fantasy film series. Yeah, I don’t believe that either so let’s change reason three to point out that the movie has a fantastic cast!
Who? Directed by Garry Marshall, written by Katherine Fugate; starring Hollywood
What? A “funny” look at the most “romantic” day of the year as multiple characters and stories cross paths throughout Los Angeles…
Why should you care? This one follows in the mold of He’s Just Not That Into You with its multi-star, multi-story format, except it’ll probably be a little bit better. I say that not because Marshall is a good director (because seriously, the guy hasn’t had a worthwhile film since Pretty Woman), but because the cast is a slightly higher caliber in both talent and looks.
Who? Directed by Joe Johnston, written by Andrew Kevin Walker and David Self; starring Benicio Del Toro, Emily Blunt, and Anthony Hopkins
What? An aristocrat with slurred speech is bitten by a furry beast and attempts to hump Blunt’s leg. Who can blame him really…
Why should you care? This has been a troubled production for a while now with re-shoots, editor and composer changes, a rather tepid trailer, and more… but for some reason I’m still interested. Three reasons actually. The writer of Seven. The effects guru behind An American Werewolf In London. And an R-rating for bloody horror violence and gore. I’m not expecting greatness, but there’s a good chance this can still be a fun and scary flick.
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