Austenland is a sitcom masquerading as a feature, and while for some that will be just fine, I’m not one of those who typically finds such pieces of pop entertainment all that worthwhile. I simply don’t see the appeal, this love letter to Jane Austen an envelope better left unopened.
Drinking Buddies is as delightful as it is thought-provoking, as humorous as it is emotionally pure, and as such the film becomes one of August’s must-see enterprises audiences looking for something a bit outside of the box owe it to themselves to seek out and discover.
But it is To’s talent for destruction that’s best on display in Drug War. Heroes fall, villains are mowed down in a hail of bullets and bystanders are fodder for gory catastrophe, all of it happening in the blink of an eye.
With a script co-written once again by Pegg and Wright, [The World’s End] is a subversive trip down memory lane coupled with not-so-veiled commentary on consumerist culture and suburban homogenization. It is smarter than you initially think it is and more bracing in its darkly tragic satire than many might be willing to give it credit for, the resulting comedic jaunt an intelligently observational diatribe worthy of multiple looks.
You’re Next is not your typical home invasion horror-thriller. Filled with inventive twists and turns, showcasing a heroic transformation that would cause both Jamie Lee Curtis and Sigourney Weaver to rise to their feet in unabated cheers, the movie is a witty, gory and unexpectedly exciting hoot filled with scares and laughs aplenty.
This first foray into the Mortal Instruments world is a laughably forgettable misfire better left alone, and for the life of me I can’t imagine who will find buying a ticket to visit this City of Bones as money well spent.
Ain’t Them Bodies Saints doesn’t rewrite the rule book or transform the genre in any way that’s new or different and that’s okay. When a movie is as close to perfectly constructed as this, when the acting is this universally excellent, not being the most original noir in the backwoods Texas hill country is just fine with me.
The fine line that Vaughn and company attempted to walk is blurred considerably, incoming writer/director Jeff Wadlow (Cry_Wolf) more interested in embracing the more exploitive aspects of the narrative instead of having a discussion about the ethically complex societal constructs the existence of these real-life heroes generates. He revels in the blood splatter, lets loose with the ultra-violence, letting things culminate in a showdown between teen boys with daddy issues instead of anything even remotely substantive.
Precious might have been a homerun for Daniels, but I’m starting to think it might be his only one, and while this film certainly improves upon the laughably mediocre The Paperboy (which, it must be admitted, was also exceedingly well acted) it’s flaws are much too glaring and obvious to be laid aside entirely. Still, thanks to the cast, indebted in some respects to Strong’s intelligently layered script, Lee Daniels’ The Butler is worthy of a look, if only to see Winfrey’s triumphant return in all its spellbinding glory.