Juliette Lewis

Sundance Institute

Kat Candler expands her short film of the same name to feature-length with Hellion, in which she explores the warm-tinted indie trend of faux-nostalgia for small Southern towns, where the ruffians – or hellions – learn to be men. Subplots abound in this tale of men on the Texan coastline, but there’s no strong central plot to be found. Aaron Paul plays Hollis Wilson, a grieving husband who’s lost his wife and is trying to keep custody of his two sons. Paul brings a level of emotional depth to the character that audiences have come to expect from the Breaking Bad actor, but it’s really 15-year-old Josh Wiggins who steals the show – in his first film to date – as the older son, Jacob. Deke Garner and Juliette Lewis round out the cast as Wes, the younger brother, and Pam, the boys’ aunt. A combination of Hollis’s parental absence and Jacob’s delinquent behavior eventually exposes the family to Child Protective Services, putting Wes in the custody of Aunt Pam and pushing the father and protective older brother to a breaking point.

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Clark W. Griswold (Chevy Chase) just wants to have a good ole’ fashioned family Christmas at his place, but Karma (or some other unstoppable, twisted force) is working against him.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr hits the road with Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifianakis to see if the new Todd Phillips comedy will be as funny as The Hangover. He also faces off with Will Ferrell and Brad Pitt in a very mega way. It’s the first official weekend of the holiday movie season, so Kevin will hand out the mid-term grades and let you know if these films are worth checking out.

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This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr celebrated Halloween by dressing up as a slutty nurse and watching the latest Saw movie. Then he dressed up as a slutty lawyer and watched the latest slice of Oscar bait known as Conviction. Now, he’s changed costumes once again to dress up as a slutty schoolgirl to hand out grades to these movies and contemplate whether you all would be better off catching up on the awesome recently Halloween-appropriate Blu-rays releases like The Exorcist, Psycho, Alien Anthology or The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

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Romantic comedy makers, here’s some advice: When you’re pinpointing a male lead to star opposite a genre stalwart such as Jennifer Aniston, skew more toward the Jason Batemans of the world than the Matthew McConaugheys. The Arrested Development veteran’s appearance in The Switch, a top-notch valentine to New York City and parenthood being released during the summer doldrums, epitomizes the wisdom of this approach. As neurotic, repressed financial analyst Wally Mars, Bateman turns the standard leading male archetype on its head. Out of a morass of clichés, from the When Harry Met Sally components of the narrative to the big climactic reveal, he makes stability sexy, offering an appealing regular-guy counterpart in the cold war with Patrick Wilson’s dreamboat Roland for the heart of Kassie (Aniston). Beneath the bundle of obsessions and fears is a smart, lonely man fighting for self-respect and the right to feel happy.

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In a Dystopian future, oil reserves are all but gone, and everyone is animated in such a way that their eyes are way, way too big for their heads.

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Kevin Carr takes a look at this week’s movie releases, including Zombieland, Whip It and Capitalism: A Love Story.

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Fox Searchlight has released a brand new featurette for the upcoming roller derby movie Whip It, from first time director Drew Barrymore. Narrated by Ms. Barrymore herself, the featurette shows that this Austin-set film is full of girl power.

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The first photos for Drew Barrymore’s directorial debut — the story of girls on skates kicking the shit out of each other — have arrived.

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