This weekend features the Battle of Stupidity. In one corner, we have a buddy cop movie featuring two unbelievably dumb characters. In the other corner is the year’s second big-budget ‘Die Hard’ knock-off set in the White House. That one’s chock full of stupid action and (hopefully) intentionally bad writing. Which will end up the victor, the vulgar girls or the mind-numbing action flick?
With his new comedy, ‘Bridesmaids‘ director Paul Feig once again places women in dirty, non-traditional roles. I don’t know how long he can keep this schtick going, but ‘The Heat‘ appears to be worth a watch – that is, if you’re not tired of Melissa McCarthy playing foul, crass characters. Sandra Bullock stars as an uppity FBI agent who’s assigned to work with abrasive Boston PD officer McCarthy to take down one of the city’s most notorious drug suppliers. While this synopsis may carry the stink of ‘Cop Out‘, ‘The Heat’ already has one thing in its favor – its trailer alone has more laughs than the entirety of ‘Cop Out’.
Going head-to-head on nearly the same number of screens is Roland Emmerich’s latest monument-destroying blockbuster, ‘White House Down‘. Yes, this marks the second White-House-in-Peril movie of 2013 (the other being ‘Olympus Has Fallen’), but things are really getting out of control here. Come on, it’s Roland Emmerich – would you expect anything less? Channing Tatum brings his YouTube blogger daughter to the White House while he interviews with the Secret Service. Before leaving, the White House falls under siege, so Tatum must save both the President (Jamie Foxx) and his own daughter, not to mention… the world. Co-stars include Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jason Clarke, Richard Jenkins, James Woods, one of the McPoyles from ‘It’s Always Sunny‘ and Devil from ‘Justified‘. Be prepared for two-and-a-half hours of D.C. mayhem.
Neil Jordan’s latest vampire effort ‘Byzantium‘ opens in limited release. Giving me lots of hope are the cast and concept. Gemma Arterton and Saoirse Ronan play a pair of vampires posing as a mother-daughter couple. When their true identities are investigated and discovered by the local townsfolk, they’re placed in a “fight or flight” scenario.
Also opening in limited release is the little-advertised Jason Statham action flick ‘Redemption‘. Coming from the writer of ‘Eastern Promises‘, Statham plays a seemingly typecast role – a homeless drifter on the run from military police seeking to have him court-marshaled. Now associating with lowlife scum, he recognizes the opportunity to assume another man’s identity and goes with it. Supposedly, we can expect the unexpected – but isn’t every Jason Statham movie a carbon copy of every other?