Opening in Las Vegas, March 11, 2016

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Only two movies opening here this week. The better of them would seem to be 10 Cloverfield Lane (76), getting a rave review from our contributor James. It’s about a woman who wakes up to find herself in a fallout shelter, imprisoned by John Goodman, which is probably no one’s idea of a good time. What connection it has to Cloverfield I’m sure we’ll find out if we see it. Brian Truitt: “A well-crafted affair by debuting director Dan Trachtenberg that mixes elements of an intimate stage play with the white-knuckled tension of a cracking good Twilight Zone episode.”

The other is The Brothers Grimsby (45), another attempt at a character-driven farce by Sacha Baron Cohen. Since Borat, he’s had a string of duds, and this doesn’t seem to be the one to break him out of it. It’s an opposite-personality brothers film. Peter Bradshaw: “Grimsby has the occasional laugh and a succession of finely wrought grossout spectaculars which are reasonably entertaining…. But with its cod-Bond and mock-action material it carries a weird overall feel, like kids’ TV but produced on a lavish scale with added filth.”

About Jackrabbit Slim

Location: Vegas, Baby! I’m much older than the other whippersnappers here, a baby boomer. I tend to be more snobbish about film, disdaining a lot of the multiplex fare for “cinema.” My favorite films: Woody Allen’s oeuvre (up until about 1990), The Godfather, The Graduate, A Hard Day’s Night, Pulp Fiction. Politics: Well, George McGovern was my political hero. I’m also a prickly atheist. Occupation: Poised to be an English teacher in Las Vegas. For many years I was an editor at Penthouse Magazine. My role on this blog seems to be writing lots of reviews and being the resident Oscar maven.

3 responses »

  1. Odd to make an apparent sequel to a largely forgotten film that’s so old that when we reviewed it here Jaydro was still posting on the site! Still, I didn’t mind Cloverfield and I’m intrigued to the reference in the review above that it has a Twilight-Zone feeling (something the original definitely didn’t have).

  2. I went to see ‘Brothers Grimsby’ last night and it was probably half-a-step down from Cohen’s previous work The Dictator.

    Even by today’s standards it had some seriously gross-out humour scenes that made me not wanting to look at the screen – I guess if nothing else Cohen is unafraid to push the boundaries on that type of humour.

    It is crudely funny at times and even occasionally witty but it’s pretty slapdash most of the way and even by the standards of a throwaway comedy, the plot is incredibly idiotic (especially the finale). I don’t really think the director of ‘Now You See Me’ was the best choice for this type of film. He makes the action scenes super-slick but in terms of comedy and pacing he’s not really up to it.

    Having seen most of his films now, Cohen is clearly a talent but I think he’ll always struggle to make his stock characters really work in a feature-length comedy.

    And speaking of length, the film is an incredibly short 82 minutes (post-production cutting I suspect). I’d doubt in my 30 years of seeing films at the cinema I’ve ever seen a film of shorter length.

  3. The best part of Borat wasn’t even in the movie proper, but a ‘deleted scene’ that showed Borat walking the cheese aisle, pointing to each and every thing of cheese and going “What’s this?” and the supermarket manager saying “It’s cheese”. One of the more brilliant comedic commentaries (and it lasts for minutes) on the modern Western world and it wasn’t even in the movie. The rest of the movie was garbage. I haven’t watched another one of his. Though he was great in The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.

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