Weekend Movies: Wake Me When Summer Comes

I previously stated that summer started early this year with the April 4th release of ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’. Now I have to take that back, because absolutely nothing has happened since then. Sadly, this weekend continues that lackluster trend.

Opening on the most screens is a chick flick that the studio has desperately tried to market as something it’s not. From the trailers, ‘The Other Woman‘ looks like a female-empowering comedy where Cameron Diaz realizes that she’s dating a married man and, with the help of the cheater’s wife (Leslie Mann), pulls pranks to get back at him. Along the way, they meet another victim (model Kate Upton) who joins in on the hijinks. The movie doesn’t sound too painful at this point. The cast and story are draws for female moviegoers, and Kate Upton is a draw for men. However, that’s not what we really get. The actual movie takes an hour to get to any plot, the characters are horrible and unlikeable, the editing is sluggish, the tone is all over the place, and it only earns a handful of laughs. No matter the viewer’s gender, ‘The Other Woman’ is an ugly mess.

The weekend’s second widest release is an English-language remake of Luc Besson’s parkour action flick ‘District B13‘. The original French star David Belle returns for the role in ‘Brick Mansion‘, this time starring alongside the late Paul Walker. (After this, ‘Fast and Furious 7’ will be Walker’s last movie.) The pair play an unlikely cop/criminal duo working together to take down a notorious drug-dealing gangster (RZA) in a Detroit ghetto. I went in looking for a “Turn off your brain and enjoy” type of movie, but I can only shut off so much of my brain. ‘Brick Mansions’ is offensively stupid.

I can’t comment on the low-budget, PG-13 horror movie ‘The Quiet Ones‘, because Lionsgate didn’t screen it in my region. That can only show how low the studio’s expectations are for its critical response and success. The film follows a university professor and a group of undergrads who perform some ethically sketchy experiments on a young woman and unleash evil in the process. It sounds a little bit too much like a cheap ‘Flatliners‘ rip-off for me.

On the indie front, from the writer-turned-director of ‘Eastern Promises‘ comes ‘Locke‘. The thriller stars a bearded Tom Hardy in a car. From what the trailers show, nothing happens outside his car. The star plays a family man whose past catches up with him at the worst time.

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