Despite three new movies hitting the big screen this weekend, I don’t know if any of them can dethrone ‘The Hunger Games’. I guess we’ll see.
The widest opener of this weekend is the Farrelly brothers’ ‘The Three Stooges‘, the movie that studios have been trying to make for ages now. This rendition brings the classic characters Larry, Moe and Curly into modern day, placing the slapstick characters in our world. Sean Hayes plays Larry, Chris Diamantopoulos plays Moe and Will Sasso plays Curly. In this tale that’s been split into three chapters, the wacky threesome has to save an orphanage and, of course, gets caught up in some wacky business along the way. Be warned, the mix of the classic characters with modern pop culture is like oil and water.
After a lengthy sit on the shelf due to insufficient funds for distribution, we’re finally being blessed with ‘The Cabin in the Woods‘, the game-changing comedic horror movie from Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard. I’ll have to keep plot details vague because spoilers will abound otherwise. A group of twenty-somethings take a weekend vacation in the secluded woods, and evil is unleashed upon them. Imagine ‘The Evil Dead‘ with a sci-fi twist. What you get is not only purely entertaining, it’s going to forever change how you look at 90% of horror movies – both old and new.
Not screened for press, I know next to nothing about ‘Lockout‘. All I’m sure of is that the movie was written and produced by Luc Besson, and Guy Pearce plays a wrongfully-convicted inmate who’s offered a full pardon if he can rescue the President’s kidnapped daughter. Where is she? Well, this is where it gets odd. She’s been kidnapped by a bunch of prison inmates in an overrun prison – in space. This has Syfy Channel written all over it.
A few little indies open this weekend as well. Speaking of the French action mogul, I didn’t know Luc Besson was capable of directing a dramatic bio-pic. [Ed.: He’s not. I saw this at TIFF last year. It sucks. -JZ] Starring Michelle Yeoh and David Thewlis, ‘The Lady‘ tells the true story of Aung San Suu Ky, the woman at the core of Burma’s democracy movement.
‘Bad Ass‘ stars Danny Trejo as a war vet who’s been down-and-out since returning home. Forty years later, now he’s got a beef to pick.
Did you listen to the band Hole back in the ’90s? Me neither. But for those rare fans out there, ‘Hit So Hard‘, a documentary about drummer Patty Schemel’s battle with fame (if that’s what you want to call it) and addiction, opens on one solitary screen – but that’s not the only music-based documentary opening this weekend. ‘How to Grow a Band‘ follows the Nickel Creek (who?) mandolin-playing frontman in a crossroad of his life – his marriage has ended and his band is on hiatus. What’s he going to do?
Krysten Ritter, Kate Bosworth and Rachel Bilson star in ‘L!fe Happens‘, a comedy about two best friends thrown out of whack when one of them gets knocked up. I might be interested in ‘L!fe’ had the exclamation point not been placed in the title.
Best Foreign Film Oscar contender ‘Monsieur Lazhar‘ is finally hitting U.S. soil (outside the film festival circuit, anyway). It was buzzed about at Sundance, so expect greatness.
Starring Kurt Russell and Melanie Lynskey, the tiny sports drama ‘Touchback‘ opens on 51 screens. The movie is a flashback to 15 years prior as a guy reflects on the high school football injury that ruined his chance of going pro.