Prince Shia LaBeouf to Lay Waste to Elders, Minorities and the Poor at the Box Office

STV · 09/26/08 11:05AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your indispensable guide to what's new, noteworthy and/or totally doomed this week at the movies. Today we welcome Shia LaBeouf and his million-dollar pinkie back to theaters alongside Spike Lee, Richard Gere, Diane Lane, Charlize Theron and Kirk Cameron (!), while facing a robust litter of potential arthouse underdogs and DVD release for the agoraphobes among us. As always, our opinions are our own, but if Josh Groban can steadfastly see it our way, shouldn't you as well?WHAT'S NEW: Shia LaBeouf reunites with his Disturbia director DJ Caruso for the thriller Eagle Eye, featuring our young hero as a man trapped (alongside Michelle Monaghan) in a mysterious mire of surveillance, espionage and murder also featuring Billy Bob Thornton and Rosario Dawson. Hitchcock comes up in more discussions of the film than he doesn't, with the rap being that Eagle Eye represents North by Northwest to Disturbia's too-influential-for-comfort Rear Window, but that's just adults being adults. The kids will toss rose petals and dump around $30.6 million out their wallets, further anchoring LaBeouf as his generation's most bankable star without a driver's license. Congrats, Shia! Meanwhile, that generation's parents can shuffle into the auditorium next door for the Gere/Lane reteaming Nights in Rodanthe, adapted from a Hallmark card novel by Nicholas Sparks with enough inoffesnsively creaky cliche and Mom Jeans-wetting romance to attract around $13.1 million. Also opening in limited release: The Palahniuk adaptation Choke; the Charlize Theron-led propaganda ensemble Battle in Seattle; Tim Robbins' and Rachel McAdams' Iraq-themed The Lucky Ones; Wayne Wang's modest immigrant mish-mash A Thousand Years of Good Prayers; the misanthropic Easter bunny comedy Hank and Mike; the race-baiting terrorism saga Shoot on Sight (tagline: "Is it a crime to be a Muslim?"); the Filipina-tranny doc The Amazing Truth About Queen Raquela; and the lyrical, Indie Spirit Award-winning drama August Evening. THE BIG LOSER: It's not like we actively root against films around Defamer HQ (all right, maybe that one time; it had it coming), and we really would like to see Spike Lee pull off Miracle at St. Anna, his epic WWII semi-mystery focusing long-overdue attention on the Army's 92nd Infantry Division — the only all-black unit to see combat in Europe. He may yet do it with Disney's micro-marketing prowess, but let's be honest: The reviews are brutal, it's 160 minutes long, it's rated R, it rotates between English, German and Italian, and at least a quarter of its intended audience is likelier to defer to one of two sturdy holdovers — Burn After Reading or The Famliy That Preys. If this breaks $5.5 million, we'll be shocked. Sorry, Spike; there's always Inside Man 2.

Police Brutality Strikes Keira, Kate and Dakota at the Box Office

STV · 09/19/08 11:00AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your official tastemaking Bible for everything new and noteworthy at the movies. The second week of the fall season offers another mixed harvest of Oscar bait, multiplex placeholders and indie hopefuls, none more eagerly anticipated than the historically skeevy Dakota Fanning 2.0 drama Hounddog. But we'll get to that momentarily, along with this week's worthwhile DVD releases and an all-call for your own recommendations. As always, our opinions are our own — in times like these, who really wants to share? WHAT'S NEW: The first genuine Oscar-chasing release of the fall, The Duchess will likely split its viewership between pro- and anti-Keira Knightley factions before anyone bothers to acknowledge its broader, bodice-ripping appeal. So yes, Team Knightley: She deftly portrays Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, the late-18th-century heroine with the bitterly controlling husband (Ralph Fiennes), the rabble-rousing side dish (Dominic Cooper) and a surfeit of corsted, pre-feminist longing. The star and the film are beautiful, the direction assured and the awards-season creds affirmed — particularly Fiennes', whose customary wretchedness as the Duke acquires a kind of fascinating tenderness with age. If anyone should be on the Oscar bubble (besides the art and costume crew, which are locks), it's him.Still, in limited release, Duchess isn't competing for any box-office glory; that distinction belongs to Lakeview Terrace, the not-entirely-miserable Neil LaBute thriller featuring Samuel L. Jackson as a sociopathic cop out to get the hot interracial couple next door (Patrick Wilson and Kerry Washington). Against sturdy holdovers (Burn After Reading, The Family That Preys) and middling newbies (the Dane Cook slog My Best Friend's Girl, Ricky Gervais's leading-man debut Ghost Town), Lakeview will top out at $15.6 million. Cook will follow with $13.2 million; with half the screens and even less promotion, Ghost Town should still manage an even $6 million. Also opening: Ed Harris's old-old-school Western Appaloosa; Chris Smith's tiny, acclaimed Indian excursion The Pool; the gay-conversion melodrama Save Me; the wrenching immigrant day-in-the-life tale Take Out; and the Duchess-correcting, misogynist fantasia The Pink Conspiracy. THE BIG LOSER: You know, after we just predicted the Weinsteins would once again find their step in the multiplex, trust in Harvey to not only dump another subpar animated fairy tale on an unsuspecting public, but to essentially disown it. Such is Igor's lot, with its backers AWOL, its reviews tepid, and its voice talent (John Cusack, Molly Shannon, Steve Buscemi) trapped in a Straight-to-Flopz™ patchwork about a hunchback pursuing his dream of becoming a mad scientist. MGM is left to collect the grosses for this one, which won't break $5 million on 2,300 screens. Or, as they call it at Weinstein HQ, business as usual.

Coens, Cops and Tyler Perry Take on 'The Women' in Fall's First Battle Royale

STV · 09/12/08 11:15AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your weekly guide to peaks, valleys and pratfalls among the latest new movies in theaters. And finally, after consecutive weekends when we thought God had up and abandoned us with the feral makers of College and Disaster Movie, we have some real films to write about. So read on for our typically expert preview of what's what at the box office, including Coen surprises, Alan Ball atrocities, potential ladyfights, timely new DVD's and one melodrama to rule them all. As always, our opinions are our own; you simply can't fake this kind of refinement, taste and acuity. WHAT'S NEW: So Burn After Reading is good — more admirable than likable, really, with the Coen brothers returning to their parched well of overmatched dolts in possession of objects way beyond their ken. This time it's Brad Pitt and Frances McDormand attempting to blackmail a CIA analyst (a bracingly potty-mouthed John Malkovich) whose "memoirs" they've found lying on their gym's floor; Tilda Swinton and George Clooney join in as awkward archetypes of paranoia and aloof, striving America. If we sound glib, that's Burn for you — a plot- and style-allergic screwball comedy that succeeds primarily as an almost-clean break (even Pitt's character is ultimately a red herring) from two decades of recycled Coen tropes.Alas, it's 20 years too late for some moviegoers, whose Coen aversion will keep Burn and its high-octane ensemble around $16 million for the weekend. That might be enough to surpass the De Niro/Pacino miscarriage Righteous Kill for second place overall, but we don't think anybody will overtake The Family That Preys — or, excuse us, Tyler Perry's The Family That Preys. The distinction matters, too: Even with 1,000 fewer screens than Kill, the dude is a box-office witch with a cult following and increasing crossover juice (Kathy Bates!) that'll push Family to $19.5 million in three days. Not that we've seen it — Perry doesn't avail his films to the press — but it's still fascinating stuff; we'll have more on him here later in the day. Also opening: The chatty, mostly misleadingly titled Young People Fucking; Takashi Miike's acid-trip spaghetti Eastern Sukiyaki Western Django; the flashback-y Jewish family drama A Secret; the enviro-alarmist doc FLOW: For Love of Water; and Matthew McConaughey's shirtless adventure Surfer, Dude. THE BIG LOSER: Here and elsewhere, we've made little secret of our disdain for Towelhead, Alan Ball's thoroughly revolting, exploitive, amateurish, illiterate and borderline retarded sketch of molesty, multi-ethnic suburban ennui. It's not worth getting into again — that's what Google's for — but look at it this way: Warner Independent Pictures didn't fold because it couldn't compete; it was poisoned. If you pay money to see this movie, you could be next.

Movie Studios Give Up, Cede Weekend To NFL

STV · 09/05/08 11:40AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your weekly guide to everything new, noteworthy and potentially nausea-inducing at the movies. If summer was really just a heady four-month industry bender of superheroes and the occasional Sex romp, then consider this week the hangover: The brutal post-Labor Day doldrums, when phoner-inner Nic Cage has the box office to himself, our underdog is an ethnic punchline, and we want to to do nothing but shut ourselves in with a few of this week's only slightly more intriguing DVD releases. So read on for a remedy; as always, our opinions are our own, but let's just assume we're all in agreement this time around. It's kind of hard to screw up a week like this. WHAT'S NEW: However wistful our recollections of Nicolas Cage's finer moments, it's never enough to shake the grave reality of seeing him as a laconic, hairplugged hitman in Bangkok Dangerous. And while our pity is mitigated slightly by the minor majesty of his Thai survival struggles, we're guessing a deafult number-one opening around $9.3 million (nothing else is opening wide this week) is deflating enough to set us back at least a few years to The Wicker Man — another ill-advised remake he had no business touching. Anyway, it's too late now. And did we mention we're hungover?Also opening: Jamie Bell's teen-voyeur tale Mister Foe; Azazel Jacobs's wildly overrated Sundance darling Momma's Man; Oscar-winning docmaker Jessica Yu's narrative debut Ping Pong Playa; and Claude Chabrol's moody May-December psychodrama A Girl Cut in Two. THE BIG LOSER: Honestly? You, the moviegoer. Even Tropic Thunder could drop 50% from last week and still surpass its production budget, a symbolic bump that will probably please all those woozy DreamWorks execs with hot compresses on their foreheads just fine. But until the Coens, The Women and the rest of the fall players start trotting out of the tunnel next week, your options are as limited as they've been all year. Sorry!

Hollywood Treats Labor Day Moviegoers to Festive Abundance Of Crap

STV · 08/29/08 11:05AM

Welcome to a special Labor Day edition of Defamer Attractions, your regular guide to what's new, noteworthy and potentially nausea-inducing this week at the movies. We're as shocked as anyone to see another bottleneck for wide releases, with five films vying for scarce holiday dollars before studios roll out their fall collections. Alas, there they are — only one dumpee can finish on top, and our overeducated guess follows below. We've also got a hunch over who stands to lose big, our regular underdog pick for your consideration, and the best of the best new DVD releases for you three-day-weekend homebodies. As always, our choices are our own but positively elegant in their accuracy. You're welcome! WHAT'S NEW: For the second consecutive week, what isn't new? But more to the point, what's new that you actually want to see? The Summer of the R-rated Comedy tapers off with College, which will battle Disaster Movie in the lowest-common-denominator category. Hamlet 2 expands to 1,500 screens, hoping to find some traction in the mudslide that was its lackluster limited opening last Friday. Among smaller films, look for Brian Cox to avenge his murdered dog in the haunting Red, while Czech Oscar-winner Jiri Menzel returns after 20 years with I Served the King of England and the '90s art-scene aftermath gets a once-over in the doc Beautiful Losers. Finally — and somewhat amazingly — a franchise is born with Another Gay Sequel: Gays Gone Wild!.THE BIG LOSER: Babylon A.D. may yet outmaneuver Tropic Thunder for the week's top box-office spot; it should tip $15 million for the four-day frame, probably just sneaking by Ben Stiller's comedy by less than $1 million. That's the "good news" — if underperforming by about 20% is still considered good. The failures don't stop there, however; to the extent it's remembered at all, Babylon A.D. will always have the distinction of being the film that ended loose-lipped Matthieu Kassovitz's directing career in America, sucker-punched Vin Diesel back into franchise submission and jammed a red-ink exclamation point on Fox's underachieving (if not disastrous) summer. Still, they'll always have the silver lining of ambition — this kind of implosion requires a rare chemistry you shouldn't take for granted. Just wear sunglasses and stand way, waaayyyy back.

Bunnies, Rockers and Longshots Fight Death at Congested Multiplex

STV · 08/22/08 11:05AM

Welcome back to another edition of Defamer Attractions, your regular guide to the latest in abandon, excess and best-kept secrets at a theater near you. We're looking at an unusually busy — and maybe even unusually good — week for mid-August, with four new releases opening wide and Tropic Thunder looking to hold fast to No. 1. And while all the congestion is bound to squeeze at least one player out, a romantic opening at the art house is one of our favorite underdog selections to date. As always, our opinions are our own, but with this kind of unparalleled taste and accuracy, would you really want it any other way? WHAT'S NEW: Or perhaps, rather, "What isn't new?" Moreover, it's a fascinating week of studio test drives for stars of varying magnitudes, with Jason Statham vs. Anna Faris vs. Rainn Wilson vs. Steve Coogan vs. Ice Cube and all of them forced to open against a Tropic Thunder crew looking for payback after last week's disappointing take. It's not an even playing field, but Universal's updating of Death Race 2000 — now known simply as Death Race, for action fans afraid of big numbers — has the best advantage with Statham's bankable, monosyllabic heroism set for a $17.5 million take.We're pulling for Faris, meanwhile, as sharp and enduring (and continually underrated) a comic talent as anyone churned out of the Apatow stable, yet whose The House Bunny may not have the legs it needs to hop over The Dark Knight and into third place. The hell with it — we're calling for $11 million, which should narrowly surmount Batman by about $750,000. The Weinstein touch will do pretty much what you expect for Ice Cube's PG-rated (and Fred Durst-directed) The Longshots, nudging it only slightly over $6 million. Coogan's mixed-reviewed Hamlet 2 — which Focus bought this year at Sundance for $11 million — won't break the Top 10 in limited release. Also opening: The Tori Spelling-starring Lovecraft adaptation Cthulu; the revealing (if slightly precious) documentary Anita O'Day: The Life of a Jazz Singer; and the wasted Germs/Darby Crash biopic What We Do is Secret, hands down the most dreadfully misconceived LA rock film since The Doors. THE BIG LOSER: It's not like we're not pulling for Rainn Wilson in The Rocker or anything, but seeing Fox set him up as the next Jack Black in his first real leading role — a flabby, flamboyant man-child drummer who reclaims his dream of rock stardom by joining his nephew's band — only to have him crash with maybe $5.5 million tops? It's almost enough to make us wish for his return to those not-too-long ago Bob Shaye glory days. Or at least a new season of that sitcom in which he seems to excel.

Weak 'Thunder' Still Strong Enough to Rain on 'Dark Knight' Parade

STV · 08/15/08 11:15AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your bulletproof one-stop resource for the weekend in new moviegoing. Or sort of bulletproof — Pineapple Express burned us last week with a late slowdown, but we're preparing to bet the farm on The Dark Knight's fall from box-office supremacy by Sunday night. But is what's replacing it even any good? Yes and no, but we'll get to that, as we will with this week's best release off the beaten path and a look-see at new DVD releases for the tired, cheap and/or agoraphobic among us. As always, our opinions are our own, but as long they're right, what's to argue? WHAT'S NEW: We're avowedly Team Tropic Thunder, a genuinely funny (if perhaps too-close-for-comfort) satire that nevertheless looks likelier and likelier to slide softly into history as DreamWorks' last noble misfire. We'll discuss that more below, but our skepticism doesn't mean it can't finish on top for one happy weekend — the question is, How happy? Opening opposite Star Wars: The Clone Wars and still facing a formidable money magnet in The Dark Knight, we could see Thunder surmounting the new Harry Knowles favorite with around $25 million. Clone Wars will finish close to $19 million, with TDK wielding enough juice to creep as far north as maybe even $18 million. Pineapple Express will holdover nicely around $13 million.Also opening: The disposable Kiefer Sutherland thriller Mirrors; the Luke Wilson disease-of-the-week dramedy Henry Poole is Here; the 3-D housefly-in-space adventure Fly Me to the Moon; the seedy, acclaimed LA saga Falling; the Argentinean hermaphrodite coming-of-age story XXY and finally! In the city limits! At the Nuart! Lionsgate's dump-and-run splatter flick The Midnight Meat Train. See it while you can. THE BIG LOSER: Can a film finish in first place at the box office but still be considered a disappointment at Defamer Attractions? Sure — especially Tropic Thunder. It's turned into a bit of a headache for DreamWorks, which has saturated the media to the point of overexposure — literally to a place where the casual viewer they so desperately need for a $90 million R-rated comedy (especially women) is dead to the stimulus. Some folks we've talked to are avoiding it on principle alone, arguing they've already seen the movie via its infamous redband trailer and on about 50 billboards flanking Santa Monica Blvd. Love it though we do, we can't really argue with them.

Will 'Dark Knight' Choke on 'Pineapple'?

STV · 08/08/08 11:00AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your regular guide to what's new, noteworthy and/or totally stillborn this week at the movies. For the second straight week, The Dark Knight has a legitimate challenger for box-office supremacy, while a smattering of other releases — including one of the year's best documentaries — reinforce this summer's unusually strong vintage. Even the latest DVD's are impressive. Who knew? So screw the Olympics and read on for the real must-sees; as always, our opinions are our own, but with 99.999996% accuracy, we wouldn't have it any other way.

August Blahs Hit Hard as Scummy 'Mummy' Threatens Bat-Superiority

STV · 08/01/08 11:05AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your regular guide to new hits, misses and dead ends this weekend at the movies — and considering our sudden passage into the August filmgoing doldrums, we could use all the guidance we can get. Still, Batman's dark shadow stretches into its second week while another, stinkier franchise will do all it can to vanquish The Dark Knight at the box office. Meanwhile, we fear for Kevin Costner, have a film-festival darling in mind for this week's Underdog pick, and have a bleary-eyed glance at the latest DVD releases as well. As usual, our opinions are our own, but they're also essentially failsafe, so read them and weep! Literally!

'Dark Knight' to Make Quick Work of Opponents 'Step Brothers,' 'X-Files' and Others

STV · 07/25/08 11:10AM

Welcome to the latest edition of Defamer Attractions, your regular Friday guide to another oversaturated summer weekend of new movies. While The Dark Knight sets up Batcamp for another week at number one, another brooding franchise goes up against Team Apatow in the also-ran camp. A British classic gets a fine art-house face-lift, meanwhile, and a windfall of new DVD's will keep the agoraphobes among us busy for a while. As always, our opinions are our own, but they're bulletproof, so read on for the only filmgoing advice that matters. WHAT'S NEW: The primary competition for The Dark Knight's second weekend will be... itself. You have to feel for Sony and Fox for dropping Step Brothers and X-Files: I Want to Believe opposite History's Greatest Film, but that's just the kind of extraordinary season it's been. Those films will perform decently enough, though — roughly $30 million for the Judd Apatow-produced Ferrell/Reilly comedy, $21 million for the sci-fi franchise adaptation — which is another bummer for Fox, which has only its overachieving The Happening to show for a long, lean summer at the box office.Also opening this weekend are the concert/protest film CSNY: Deja Vu; the oversexed '60s groupie chronicle Eight Miles High; Nanette Burstein's controversial pseudo-doc American Teen; the small-town gardener doc (seriously) A Man Called Pearl; and Minnie Driver's middling psychological drama Take. THE BIG LOSER: Not so much a "loser" as a handicapping interest of ours, Christian Bale's reported mum-thumping exploits — however blown out of proportion the actually are — could drop The Dark Knight a few percentage points more than it otherwise would have. But even if plunges by 50% (which it won't), it'll still nab $80 million, so again, save your pity for Fox.

Batman, ABBA and... Lou Reed? Summer's Biggest Weekend is Upon Us

STV · 07/18/08 11:00AM

Welcome to another edition of Defamer Attractions, your weekly cheat sheet to everything new and noteworthy at the movies. This is a fairly easy installment for us, as will happen when the most anticipated superhero movie of, like, ever is threatening to run off with the biggest opening weekend, like, ever. As such, knowing that at least half of you are browsing this from a lawn chair in some long, twisting multiplex queue, let's skip the formalities: This weekend features one blockbuster, a melodic bit of counterprogramming, a primate-centric flop-in-the-making and a concert film for the manic depressive in you. As usual, our opinions are our own, but they are burnished to a soft, infallible glow. Off we go!

Summer Can Only Get Better as Let-Down Trifecta Storms the Multiplex

STV · 07/11/08 11:10AM

Welcome back to another week of Defamer Attractions, your regular guide to the fresh hell of what's new at the movies. After taking a Hancock holiday weekend to find ourselves, we're back in full-on summer anguish mode as yet another massive comics adaptation hits theaters, Brendan Fraser goes a-spelunkin' and Eddie Murphy returns with... we don't even know. But! We also have our eyes on a few alternatives both at the theaters and in the comfort of our air-conditioned caves, so all is not lost. As always, our opinions are our own and elegantly spot-on — which, of course, you've come to expect and we're happy to oblige!

Pistol-Packing Angelina Jolie No Match for Puttering Pixar Robot

STV · 06/27/08 11:15AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your handy cheat sheet to the best and worst of this weekend at the movies. Not that a new Pixar film requires much tire-kicking ahead of time, or that we haven't already spilled our guts about its gloriously confectionery pop-trash competition, or that last weekend's biggest disappointment wasn't assured to hemorrhage more money in week two. But! You shouldn't attempt to get by without our underdog pick or a typically scintillating scan of the latest DVD releases. As always, our predictions are not only our own, but also the very soul of precision. You can thank us later!

Maxwell Smart Set to Bury 'Guru' in Clash of Stinky Summer Titans

STV · 06/20/08 11:15AM

Welcome to another edition of Defamer Attractions, your regular guide to what's new, noteworthy and/or nightmarish this week at the movies. Today we hold our noses for the aromatic opening-weekend duel of Get Smart and The Love Guru, crack open the L.A. Film Festival catalog for a bit of a desperately needed counterprogramming, and handpick a few fine new DVD's for the agoraphobes among us. As always, our opinions are our own, but as long as they don't involve Manoj Night Shyamalan's box-office viability, they're also without peer.

'Hulk' Smaaaassssh 'Happening'! (And Other Box-Office Bloodshed For The Weekend Ahead)

STV · 06/13/08 11:15AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your guide to the latest surges and scourges among this weekend's new movies. After a fairly predictable go of things last week, we face a pair of high-profile releases that couldn't be further apart in their critical and commercial futures, a nifty and thoroughly unnerving art-house project (hint: wheelchair sex) and a surplus of worthwhile DVD debuts for the shut-ins among us. As always, our opinions are our own and, of course, exceedingly tasteful and accurate. We are always looking out for you!

Israeli Takes on Panda in Long-Awaited Box-Office Bloodsport

STV · 06/06/08 11:00AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your regular cheat sheet to what's new, noteworthy and/or doomed among the week's movie releases. Today we break down the hand-to-hand combat between a violence-prone bear and an equally vicious Israeli hairdresser, determine which also-ran will look on pitiably from the sidelines, suss an underdog for the multiplex-allergic among you, and review the best and brightest new DVD's. As always, our opinions are our own, but in keeping with the spirit of this week's Big Two, they are also reliable and brutally precise.

'Sex' Kills 'Indy' in an All-Estrogen Blockbuster Weekend

STV · 05/30/08 11:40AM

Welcome back to another round of Defamer Attractions, our weekly guide to picks, prognostications and perversions landing at a cinema near you. Much like last week, one new release has hijacked America's consciousness with hormonal aplomb, while Liv Tyler and her coterie of bagheaded stalkers look on from outside. We have only positive things to say about Julianne Moore's lurid dabblings in incest, and a glance at new DVD's reveals at least a few reassuring titles for the shut-ins among us. As always, our opinions are our own, but they're also just about bulletproof — finally, something we all can agree on!

Indy's Box-Office Bullwhip Kills Uwe Boll, John Cusack and Rest of Competition

STV · 05/23/08 11:00AM

Defamer Attractions returns today with another round of movie scanning for your Memorial Day weekend. We already know you're planning at least two excursions to view Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (once out of drunken impulse, and once to make sure that really was the ending you saw before blacking out), but Indy alone does not a holiday make! At least one of the poor bastards sharing this opening weekend is bound to tank the worst, and yet another is a fine bit of foreign-language counterprogramming worth your consideration. And of course we've got a few new DVD choices for the agoraphobic, hungover and/or the cheapskates among us. As always, our opinions and projections are A) our own and B) impeccably fail-safe. Where should we start?

'Prince Caspian' Rides Into Multiplex to Vanquish Everything In Sight

STV · 05/16/08 11:25AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your guide to what's new, noteworthy and potentially toxic in weekend moviegoing. Today we survey the victims of Prince Caspian's box-office menace (including a particular race-car driver still convalescing from last week's pile-up), pick our first-ever foreign-language Underdog and browse the DVD shelves for potential Sunday-morning-hangover alternatives. As always, our opinions are our own but they are also 100% accurate, so plan accordingly!

'Speed Racer' Sputters Behind 'Iron Man' in Summer's First Tentpole Battle

STV · 05/09/08 11:25AM

Welcome back to Defamer Attractions, your weekly source of tips, hints and handicapping for the latest in moviegoing. Today we catch up with projections for the not-so-mystifyingly buzz-less Speed Racer, gauge Iron Man's potential for a second straight week at No. 1, survey the landscape for our favorite underdog on the scene (hint: She shoots a mean game of pool), and browse the DVD stacks for noteworthy new titles. As always, our opinions are our own, but they're also right — Wachowskis be damned.