Which sounds more appealing: yet another con man caper flick that leaves you wondering who you can trust, or a short thriller featuring an interesting cast in a story that you saw unfold on the big screen decades ago?
The biggest release of the weekend features Will Smith in his first starring role since the M. Night Shyamalan flop ‘After Earth’. In ‘Focus‘, Smith plays a con man extraordinaire who meets a talented con woman (Margot Robbie from ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’) working with an inexperienced partner. After having her con foiled, she realizes that Smith would be a better partner in crime and decides to tag along in his ventures. What ensues is a surprisingly fun character-driven romance- and comedy-fueled suspenseful thriller that will keep you wondering what’s really going on through all the twists and turns.
In the vein of ‘Flatliners’, the second wide release tells the story of a group of med students who toy with bringing the dead back to life. ‘The Lazarus Effect‘ doesn’t appear to be anything special, but its cast is rather surprising, which leads me to believe that it might have a few tricks up its sleeve. The picture stars Mark Duplass, Olivia Wilde, Donald Glover and Evan Peters. Enter at your own risk.
David Cronenberg’s Cannes 2014 entry ‘Maps to the Stars‘ is finally coming to cinemas thanks to Focus Features. Usually, this would be a good thing, but considering that the movie is being dumped in the slow week following the Oscars (as opposed to awards season), there might be a reason it wasn’t pushed at the end of last year. Telling the story of a trashed Hollywood family, the drama stars John Cusack, Julianne Moore, Robert Pattinson and Mia Wasikowska.
An interesting documentary is coming to us on an unnumbered count of screens. ‘My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn‘ is actually directed by Liv Corfixen, the wife of the ‘Drive’ filmmaker. It documents Refn during the production and disappointing release of his last film, ‘Only God Forgives’. Said to offer insight into Refn during his most vulnerable time, there’s a lot of potential here that ought to please those of us who love the director and his films.
Nerd director Joe Lynch (‘Knights of Badassdom’) is back with ‘Everly‘. Opening on a small screen count, Salma Hayek stars in this action flick as woman wanted dead by her ex-husband. As the assassins and henchmen roll in to take her out, she must put up a hell of a fight to stay alive.