Hello again, my fellow geeks. I hope you have all recovered from eating too much turkey on the festive Holiday. I know I am just now getting back to feeling normal and part of normality for me is bringing you the newest releases to hit the greater Charlotte area this week.
This is another one of those light release weekends. Next weekend brings us the second chapter in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy and that will dominate the theater screens, and this weekend the new film from The Coen Brothers, Inside Llewyn Davis opens in limited release and will expand wider over the next few weeks.
One of the few films opening this week in wide release is:
This one looks promising. It stars Christian Bale and Casey Affleck, who play brothers in the new film from director Scott Cooper. When his brother (Casey Affleck) disappears into the backwoods controlled by a local crime syndicate run by Woody Harrelson, Russell Baze (Christian Bale) takes the law into his own hands and goes looking for his little brother.
This sounds like a thousand different low-budget thrillers from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s but under the direction of Scott Cooper, the young director whose first film was the stunning Crazy Heart which won Jeff Bridges a best actor Oscar, this could be something a little different.
The all-star cast, featuring Bale, Affleck, Harrelson as well as Willem Defoe, Zoe Saldana and Sam Shepard gives me hope that this will be something special.
OPENS FRIDAY AT THEATERS EVERYWHERE.
As I stated in last weeks abbreviated column, I am going to touch a little on the films that opened last week. A couple of them are really good and deserve your attention if you haven’t already seen them.
This isn’t a Pixar film, but it is a Disney animated film in the classic tradition. From the makers of last years Wreck-it-Ralph and 2010’s underrated Tangled, this sweet and breezy film is the best Disney musical since Beauty and the Beast.
In fact, it may be the first Disney musical since Beauty and the Beast, now that I think about it. The songs are catchy and the story is funny and fast-paced. All the trailers have focused on Olaf the snowman, voiced to perfection by Josh Gad, and as wonderful and funny as he is, the actual story, based on The Snow Queen, is great in and of itself.
If you haven’t been forced by your kids to see this already or if you don’t have kids, do yourself a favor and go see this in the theater. You will not be disappointed.
As a bonus, there is a brand new Mickey Mouse cartoon that really needs to be seen in 3D to be completely appreciated. It is pure magic, in the very best sense of the word.
NOW PLAYING IN 2D AND DISNEY 3D AT THEATERS EVERYWHERE.
I’m not going to sit here and try to convince you this is some great film, it isn’t. It is a fairly standard Jason Statham film and you know already if that is your cup of java or not, but if you have any interest in him at all, then I will recommend you seeing this film just to see James Franco at his strangest. He plays the villain in this, but he commits so fully to the story that he almost makes you feel sorry for the character and that takes talent.
Based on his performance alone, I will tell you to check this one out at a matinée on a weekday if you decide to skip work early.
NOW PLAYING AT THEATERS EVERYWHERE.
Well, that just about does it for this week, but next week we will bear witness to the unlikely reunion of Sherlock and Watson in the Lonely Mountains in Middle Earth.
Until then, Keep the Projector Threaded.