The Week in Movies: Man of Steel, This is the End, and The Bling Ring
Welcome to Annotate This, where we gather reviews, trailers, and annotate the posters for movies coming out this week. It will help you decide what to avoid, what to see, and what to pretend to see. Click on the image above to add your comments to the mix.
The Bling Ring (Limited)
A real-life story on girlish materialism and fame-obsession made for Sofia Coppola's wheelhouse. It's splashy, glossy, sensualistic, klepto-philic, and features Kardashian inspired accents. Do you want to read all about how it comments on modern obsessions with fame? Of course you do and it's in Rich Juzwiak's review here. Paris Hilton, interpreted by Leah Beckmann, has thoughts here.
This is the End (June 12)
This movie stars a bevy of young Hollywood as itself: Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, Emma Watson, Danny McBride, Craig Robinson, Jay Baruchel, Mindy Kaling, and Rihanna all gather for a blow-out party at James Franco's house, while he and Rogen brainstorm the follow up to Pineapple Express. Then end-times come and they meditate on meditating about their privilege, fame, and the meanings of morality. This referential vanity project is audacious, compelling, and awesomely flimsy.
Man of Steel
Henry Cavill is Superman—without the undies and filmed in shaky-cam, so we can take him seriously. Christopher Nolan produces and Zack Snyder directs this backstory-driven "mad, mod" rehash which features Diane Lane and Kevin Costner as Kent's lovely adoptive parents and Russell Crowe is the biological father. Amy Adams as Lois Lane gets a nice role and Michael Shannon is the villain! Also, the crew doesn't have to worry if this one bombs, because there's a sequel planned anyway. Rich Juzwiak's review here.
20 Feet From Stardom (Limited)
This powerful, fascinating examination of the world of back-up singers from music documentary veteran Morgan Neville is entertaining and illuminating in equal parts. My review here.
Berberian Sound Studio (Limited)
Starring Toby Jones as an English sound recordist hired to provide the sounds for an experimental Italian horror film, this movie tensely examines "horror's effect on a sensitive soul." It's stylish, tense, but as the characters begin to lose hold on reality, the movie starts to falter.
Call Me Kuchu (Limited)
This heartbreaking, unobtrusive documentary centers on the kindly David Kato, Uganda's first openly gay man, and his life in Uganda, in which a new law threatens to make homosexuality punishable by death. The documentary follows Kato for a year, just before he was brutally murdered by a gang.
In the Fog (Limited)
This bleak film takes place in Belarus during the Nazi occupation. The historical context is blurred while the director favors "dreamy, intricately choreographed long-takes." Harkening to old directors, it is "classical, in a good way." While the cinematography stuns, it also depicts complicated and conflicted morality of the time.
Between Us (Limited)
This movie is about really dramatic couples dinners—everyone seems bitter, destructive, competitive, and vicious. Director Dan Mirvish has adapted this from Joe Hortua's play, which takes place over the course of two evenings. Julia Stiles, Taye Diggs, David Harbour, Melissa Georges are the couples who all participate in "a Musical Chairs of annoyance."
Paul Walker, Paul Walker. He plays a man who was recently paroled, who continues to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. He picks up the wrong rental car and it has a kidnapped lady tied up in the trunk. The chief of police is pantomime, while Walker is the actor "one least wants to be stuck in a car with." As he declares in the trailer, he's trying to make up for every wrong turn he's ever made, including this one.
Far Out Isn't Far Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story (Limited)
Far Out explores Tomi Ungerer, a successful children's book author as well as an artist who pushed boundaries with art and erotica, and was able to offend people of all cultural and political types. Jules Ferrer and Maurice Sendak comment on his influence throughout the 1960s—from his illustrative works and angered 1960s posters. This documentary also provides an insight on the "so-called cultural wars" that exiled him into near obscurity.
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