Weekend Movies: Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged

Even with four studio titles opening wide this weekend, I’m most anticipating the expansion of Paul Thomas Anderson’s ‘The Master’. Last weekend’s record-setting limited release has perked my already heightened expectations. The fact that I’ll be in Southern California this weekend makes me hope that it will play near my old man’s place. If not, then I’m afraid that the fanboy side of me will be compelled to seek out the latest big comic book flick.

Although I haven’t seen it in over a decade, I have to admit that I liked Stallone’s ‘Judge Dredd’. Rob Schneider’s comic relief wasn’t comedic at all, and the only relief I felt came when he was off-screen, but I still remember enjoying the movie. I’m not exactly dying to see the reboot ‘Dredd 3D‘, but I’m curious. If only we could mix-and-match the players from the two versions. I’d take Karl Urban over Stallone, keep Diane Lane over Olivia Thirlby, and prefer Lena Headey over Armand Assante. Thank heaven that there’s no substitution for Schneider in the new cast – so far as I’m aware.

Opening just one year after the critical hit ‘Moneyball‘ is another baseball drama that appears to have a similar positive charge, ‘Trouble with the Curve’. Robert Lorenz, a longtime filmmaking partner of Clint Eastwood’s, takes a swing at directing full-time. Eastwood plays an aging baseball scout who takes his daughter (Amy Adams) on the road for one last recruiting trip. Early reviews are calling it a home run.

David Ayer, the writer of ‘Training Day‘, recycles himself one more time for the gritty cop drama ‘End of Watch‘. Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña star as two young police officers who, after seizing a drug cartel’s stash of weapons and drugs, must fight for survival when a hit gets placed on their heads. Let’s see if this one is as much of a flop as Ayer’s ‘Harsh Times‘.

After four weekends, it’s time for ‘The Possession’ to make room for another PG-13 horror flick. Not only will ‘House at the End of the Street‘ lure in the same audience, but a slew of ‘Hunger Games‘ fans may come out to see Katniss shoot arrows at horrifying terrors.

I’m a sucker for good coming-of-age movies, so here’s to hoping that ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower‘ falls into that slim category and doesn’t end up being another ‘The Art of Getting By‘. Summit’s little dramedy about the teenage dream, friendship, acceptance and love features Percy Jackson, Hermoine Granger and that scary little shit from ‘We Need to Talk About Kevin‘. The fact that Paul Rudd plays a high school teacher also has me interested.

Lynn Collins, the princess of Mars, stars in ‘Unconditional‘, a Christian-themed drama about a depressed widow who conceives grand thoughts of revenge after her husband is killed. However, her motives are forgotten when she unexpectedly comes in contact with an old friend.

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