Weekend Movies: How Puzzling…

Remember that excellent indie horror franchise that paved the path for torture porn and countless other micro-budget hits? You know, the one that Lionsgate completely burned everyone out on with annual obligatory sequels? Well, it’s back this weekend. Opening alongside it are a PTSD-focused war drama from the writer-turned-director of ‘American Sniper’ and the most recent George Clooney-directed film to receive no love.

In a day where every sequel has to have the name of the property followed by a semicolon and a subtitle (you know, because we moviegoers are too dumb to know if a movie is a sequel or not), Lionsgate has said “Screw that” and created the umpteenth ‘Saw’ movie, but with a completely different title. The title ‘Jigsaw‘ may lead you to believe that it’s an origin story prequel about the serial killer’s youthful beginnings, but it’s actually (supposedly) a true sequel. Set ten years after the last entry, the titular sicko is back at it – at least, that’s what everyone thinks when a series of grisly murders pop up with his “Wanna play a game?” calling card. Being long dead, the mystery is whether Jigsaw somehow still alive, or if a copycat is now carrying the torch. Strongly disliking the lazy latter ‘Saw’ movies, I couldn’t care less about ‘Jigsaw’. Considering the lack of press screenings across the country, it appears that Lionsgate is anticipating a lot of others sharing my same opinion.

Miles Teller once seemed like a strong up-and-comer, but then throttled back a bit. With a movie released last week (‘Only the Brave’) and another one out this weekend, it looks like he’s ramping up again. Much like the second half of ‘American Sniper’, ‘Thank You for Your Service‘ focuses on the post-war difficulties that U.S. troops experience upon returning home and attempting to adjust to normal life. The film follows a group of former soldiers, taking us through their personal and relationship struggles. The ensemble cast also includes Haley Bennett, Keisha Castle-Hughes, Amy Schumer and others.

As a director, George Clooney can’t catch a break. Even a script written by the Coen brothers isn’t helping his latest film, ‘Suburbicon‘, get positive reviews. Matt Damon, Julianne Moore and Oscar Isaac lead the film about a seemingly perfect cookie-cutter suburban neighborhood whose seedy, secret underbelly is exposed. I tend to like Clooney-directed films more than most, so I’m a little disappointed that this one wasn’t screened for press in my region (despite Paramount sending me a nifty ‘Suburbicon’ lunchbox press kit to promote it).

The week’s limited release that has my interest piqued comes to us from Open Road and Marc Forster. Blake Lively stars in ‘All I See Is You‘ as a blind woman whose marriage is changed drastically when she recovers her sight and can now see beyond the physical things that she previously couldn’t. Jason Clarke co-stars as her husband. ‘All I See Is You’ is starting its theatrical run on 283 screens.


    • Chaz

      Wow that says a lot, the latter Scary Movies are 100x worse than the later Saw films, while Saw became pretty generic that far in, Scary Movie actually became awful and completely unfunny

      • NJScorpio

        As the saw films became redundant, the Scary Movie films at least stayed relevant by skewering the past year’s horror movies. Not necessarily well, but it resulted i more variety than the Saw franchise.

  1. Chaz

    Jigsaw was good, but nothing more than that…..I’m a huge fan of the series even the bad ones, so I’m a bit biased but it delivered what I was hoping for in another one. It already made its budget back so I’m hoping things continue but we will see I guess.

    Suburbicon looked great from the trailers, a quirky dark comedy like Lebowski, guess no one else is thinking that way…..

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