For the second month in a row, I’ve managed to bring my preview in late. It’s that Miyazaki feller that’s to blame.
Actually, it’s likelier that I’m finding it even harder than most years to find anything in these first months to get excited about. And summer’s just around the corner, movie-wise! So let’s dive into the last dregs of whatever the studios think isn’t good enough for a sexier release date:
An absolutely perfect case in point: the staggeringly pointless remake Clash of the Titans, which has already been open since last night, but I’m going to wait until it’s officially the #1 movie at the box office to drag myself out to the theater; I really don’t want to see this, based not only on its pedigree (a ramshackle 1981 sword ‘n’ sorcery yawner that’s only remotely worth watching for Ray Harryhausen’s spectacular effects work), but on the bland trailer, replete with Liam Neeson visibly unhappy to be partaking in the affair. Oh, and that whole bullshit about turning a 2-D movie 3-D just for the hell of it. That’s real charming, too.
When, by the way, did it become a trend to release a really shitty summer movie in March/early April? By my count, we’ve had one every year at least since 2007 and 300.
Meanwhile, the first Tyler Perry movie of the year is coming in a bit late (usually, they drop in February): Why Did I Get Married Too? Sadly, I missed the original, and will thus be unable to give this sequel its proper due.
Another movie that looks like it ought to have been a summer release, if only as counter-programming: Date Night, with Steve Carell and Tina Fey. Neither of them has a really great big-screen track record, but maybe their powers combined means… wait, it’s directed by Shawn Levy. Never mind.
A really staggering number of NY/LA limited releases notwithstanding, the only title of note this week is Letters to God, and that only because a film whose whole entire point is “cancer-ridden children are inspirational” makes me want to seek out the filmmakers and punch them to death.
Director Matthew Vaughn – who shall, one day, prove that Layer Cake wasn’t an accident – strikes out with Kick-Ass, a mock (in both senses) superhero film; I am apparently alone in thinking that it looks stunningly, even unwatchably dreadful from the trailer, because it has as much hype as any non-tentpole film all year.
DisneyNature releases its second feature, Oceans; as far as I can tell, this one wasn’t even culled from a massive popular TV series, so it might actually be worth seeing.
A comic book series you’ve never heard of, The Losers, gets its own movie, while a singer/actress you’ve forgotten about, the multi-untalanted Jennifer Lopez, gets her own movie, The Back-Up Plan.
In the slurry of indies all get limited releases (a euphemism of course for “one week in Manhattan”), I’ll at least vouch for the Korean style-mushing epic The Good, the Bad, and the Weird.
Horror remake fever comes to its biggest test since Rob Zombie had the brass balls to take on Halloween: a by-our-lady remake of A Nightmare on Elm Street, one of the tiny number of slashers that is a genuinely great motion picture in addition to being great horror. As near as I can tell, it is the director’s feature debut, while Freddy Krueger is being played by Jackie Earle Haley, a talented man with no sense at all for a good script. I’m looking forward to getting a good head of outrage on, I don’t know about you.
The other wide release is also horror, as it happens: Furry Vengeance, in which Brendan Fraser + animals = hijinks.
Is it weird that the film I’m most excited about all month is a limited release that I probably won’t see until June or so? Well it is, Nicole Holofcener’s Please Give. Also of interest: Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor in a twisted gay love comedy, I Love You, Phillip Morris.