Opening in Chicago, 10/07


The Ides of March (trailer)
Director: George Clooney (Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, Good Night, and Good Luck., Leatherheads)
Personal Interest Factor: 8
Good Night, and Good Luck is a favorite, but Clooney’s other two directorial efforts were underwhelming. This looks pretty good, but is curiously reliant on actors I don’t really like. Great poster, though.
Metacritic: 67

Margaret (trailer)
Director: Kenneth Lonergan (You Can Count on Me)
Personal Interest Factor: 6
Been thinking that it’s been a long time since You Can Count on Me without a followup from Lonergan? Well, that’s because this movie was shot six years ago or so, and has been shelved since then in a dispute with Fox. Stars much younger versions of Anna Paquin, Matt Damon, Mark Ruffalo, Jean Reno and … Matthew Broderick, so it’s probably not very good.
Metacritic: 58

Special Treatment (trailer)
Director: Jeanne Labrune
Personal Interest Factor: 6
Isabelle Huppert stars as a high-end prostitute who has some sort of a relationship with a psychoanalyst. That sounds pretty terious, and the trailer isn’t great. Of interest mostly because of Huppert and it being one of the few films that First Run Features has distributed in 35mm in the last couple years.
Metacritic: 49

Take Shelter (trailer)
Director: Jeff Nichols (Shotgun Stories)
Personal Interest Factor: 9
Been waiting for this one all summer. Nichols’s Shotgun Stories was excellent, and the trailer for this is also very good. Reviews are very good, also. Starring the always-interesting Michael Shannon, and of course, Jessica Chastain, who’s made a pretty strong impression this year with good work in a variety of roles. Somewhat lame poster, though.
Metacritic: 84

Also this week:
Puncture (trailer) – Chris Evans, slick lawyer, medical drama, etc.
Real Steel (trailer) – oh Hugh, we weep for thee
Tucker & Dale vs. Evil (trailer) – another “horror comedy”, this time with rednecks
The Way (trailer) – Emilio Estevez strikes again!


15 responses »

  1. Wasn’t Lonergan re-editing and re-shooting this entire time? I wasn’t aware it had actually been shelved, per se…

  2. Wasn’t Lonergan re-editing and re-shooting this entire time? I wasn’t aware it had actually been shelved, per se…

    That’s possible, I don’t know the whole story. By “shelved” I really only meant “not released.”

  3. Real Steel looks sooooooo bad.

    It sounds mean to say so, but you know what looks the worst about it? That kid. “I can’t do this!” “YES. YOU CAN.”

  4. Lars Von Trier’s Melancholia arrives OnDemand today as well. The theatrical release is over a month from now. Not sure what they’re waiting for.

    I watched it early this morning before work. It’s atmospheric and there are some breathtaking shots, but it’s a slog.

    Dunst and Ginsberg are good (I’d imagine Dunst may get a nomination) but I pretty much couldn’t wait for [semi spoiler for those who haven’t seen the trailer] the planet to crush their characters.

    For Slim: Dunst’s much publicized nude scene does not disappoint. Even if there’s not an Oscar in her near future, a Mr. Skin award is.

  5. That’s not unwise. I only ask because they’re apparently LVT’s two attempts to deal with the same subject, i.e. his depression. Although Melancholia I assume is far less brutal.

  6. Saw Ides of March last night. It’s good, but just felt very slight to me. Like half a movie. When you get to the last handful of shots you realize the movie is about to end and it’s like, really? That’s it?

    The thing is the story is all about the principles of one guy, so you can have a three act structure in terms of his arc, but just not a lot happens otherwise.

    Gosling is good, but not great. I’ve not seen Drive, but my friend said he’s MUCH better in that. Clooney just hangs around playing a less charismatic, stiffer version of himself. He gets one scene where he tries to be a good actor, but he still just seems like Clooney acting – not a character, not a person.

    Clooney’s direction is very standard, very self-important. What jumped out at me was how poorly he worked with some of the musical cues. They were too big for what was happening and it just seemed weird.

    What the movie says about politics couldn’t be clearer if they wrote it on a scroll at the bottom of the screen, but as a movie it just doesn’t seem like a worthwhile exercise. And if it racks up a bunch of nominations – it just means the Oscars are more broken than I thought. C+

    I also saw WARRIOR last night. Now, that’s a movie. Very engaging, entertaining, and compelling. At times they throw a few too many things in there and it doesn’t always work, but it’s a good movie. Edgerton and Hardy are ones to watch. I’ve been saying that about Edgerton for a while, but now Hardy has convinced me as well. And I can’t wait to see what Gavin O’Connor comes up with next. B

  7. Some weirdness regarding the home video release of Margaret:

    The theatrical cut will hit Blu Ray, DVD, On-Demand, etc. However, Lonergan’s Director’s Cut will be available as an Exclusive through Amazon.

    What’s strange is that the Director’s Cut will be included as a supplement in the Blu Ray package…as a standard DVD. Very confusing and should ensure that his version will continue to go unseen by most.

  8. Just saw this this morning. Was surprised enough to see it was on Blu-Ray and now the particulars? I really want to see this. I have to check XFinity On Demand.

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