Silver Screen: The Score Card, June 20, 2013 Edition

Silver Screen: The Score Card, June 20, 2013 Edition
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Silver Screen: Confidence Man: The Hugh DeNeal Story Is Stranger than Fiction
Silver Screen: Hereafter *
Silver Screen: Machete **
Silver Screen: Saw VII 3D Zero Stars
Silver Screen: Takers *1/2
Silver Screen: 127 Hours ****
Silver Screen: 21 Jump Street ***
Silver Screen: A Good Day to Die Hard *
Silver Screen: A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas ***
Silver Screen: Admission ***1/2
Silver Screen: After Earth *
Silver Screen: American Reunion **1/2
Silver Screen: Argo **1/2
Silver Screen: Bad Teacher ***
Silver Screen: Battle: Los Angeles **
Silver Screen: Battleship *
Silver Screen: Beautiful Creatures *1/2
Silver Screen: Bernie ****
Big Muddy Film Festival 2013: Thirty Five Years Of Celebrating Cinema
Big Muddy Film Festival 33
Silver Screen: Black Swan ****
Silver Screen: Blue Valentine ****
Silver Screen: Brave ***
Silver Screen: Breaking Dawn Part I *1/2
Silver Screen: Bridesmaids ****
Silver Screen: Broken City ***
Silver Screen: Bully **
Silver Screen: Captain America **
Silver Screen: Cars II *1/2
Silver Screen: Case Thirty-nine *
Silver Screen: Cedar Rapids ****
Silver Screen: Charlie Saint Cloud **
Silver Screen: Chernobyl Diaries *
Silver Screen: Chronicle ****
Silver Screen: Cloud Atlas ***
Silver Screen: Contagion ****1/2
Silver Screen: Contraband *
Silver Screen: Cowboys & Aliens ***
Silver Screen: Crazy, Stupid, Love **
Silver Screen: Dark Shadows *1/2
Silver Screen: Dark Skies **1/2
Silver Screen: David Wong’s John Dies at the End: A Local Author Sees His Novel Hit the Big Screen
Silver Screen: Dead Man Down 1/2*
Silver Screen: Despicable Me **1/2
Silver Screen: Devil ***
Silver Screen: Dinner for Schmucks *1/2
Silver Screen: Director Rusty Nails Presents... Dead On: The Life and Cinema of George A. Romero
Silver Screen: Django Unchained ****1/2
Silver Screen: Don't Be Afraid of the Dark **
Silver Screen: Dream House *1/2
Silver Screen: Dredd 3D *1/2
Silver Screen: Drive ****1/2
Silver Screen: Drive Angry 3D **1/2
Silver Screen: Due Date ***1/2
Silver Screen: Easy A ***1/2
Silver Screen: Eat Pray Love ***
Silver Screen: End of Watch ****
Silver Screen: Evil Dead ***
Silver Screen: Fast and Furious VI **
Silver Screen: Fast Five **1/2
Silver Screen: Faster **1/2
Silver Screen: Fifty/Fifty ****
Silver Screen: Final Destination V **
Silver Screen: Flight ****
Silver Screen: Forty-two ***1/2
Silver Screen: Frances Ha ****1/2
Silver Screen: Friends with Benefits **
Silver Screen: Fright Night ***
Silver Screen: G.I. Joe: Retaliation *
Silver Screen: Gangster Squad *1/2
Silver Screen: Get Him to the Greek ***
Silver Screen: Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance 1/2*
Silver Screen: Going the Distance ***
Silver Screen: Gone **1/2
Silver Screen: Green Lantern *1/2
Silver Screen: Grown Ups *
Silver Screen: Hall Pass *1/2
Silver Screen: Hanna ****
Silver Screen: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II ****
Silver Screen: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I ***
Silver Screen: Haywire ***1/2
Silver Screen: Hit and Run ***
Silver Screen: Hope Springs ***1/2
Silver Screen: Horrible Bosses **1/2
Silver Screen: House at the End of the Street *
Silver Screen: How Do You Know ***
Silver Screen: I Am Number Four *
Silver Screen: Identity Thief ***
Silver Screen: In Time **1/2
Silver Screen: Inception ****1/2
Silver Screen: Insidious ***1/2
Silver Screen: Iron Man III **1/2
Silver Screen: J. Edgar **
Silver Screen: Jack and Jill 1/2*
Silver Screen: Jack Reacher ***
Silver Screen: Jackass 3D **1/2
Silver Screen: Jeff, Who Lives at Home ***1/2
Silver Screen: Jonah Hex *
Silver Screen: Josh Hyde’s Postcards and Love Letters
Silver Screen: Just Go with It *
Silver Screen: Killer Elite **
Silver Screen: Killer Elite **
Silver Screen: Killing Them Softly **1/2
Silver Screen: Knight and Day *1/2
Silver Screen: Kung Fu Panda II ***
Silver Screen: Larry Crowne *1/2
Silver Screen: Lawless ****
Silver Screen: Let Me In ***
Silver Screen: Life as We Know It *1/2
Silver Screen: Life of Pi **1/2
Silver Screen: Limitless ***
Silver Screen: Lincoln ****
Silver Screen: Lockout **
Silver Screen: Looper ****
Silver Screen: Mama **1/2
Silver Screen: Man of Steel *
Silver Screen: Megamind ***1/2
Silver Screen: Men in Black III *1/2
Silver Screen: Midnight in Paris ****
Silver Screen: Mission: Impossible: Ghost Protocol ****
Silver Screen: Moneyball ***1/2
Silver Screen: Moonrise Kingdom ****1/2
Silver Screen: Movie Forty-three zero stars
Silver Screen: My Soul to Take 3D 1/2*
Silver Screen: New Year’s Eve *
Silver Screen: No Strings Attached ***
Silver Screen: Now You See Me 1/2*
Silver Screen: Oblivion ***1/2
Silver Screen: Olympus Has Fallen zero stars
Silver Screen: One Day **
Silver Screen: Our Idiot Brother ***
Silver Screen: Oz the Great and Powerful **
Silver Screen: Pain and Gain ***
Silver Screen: Paranormal Activity II ***1/2
Silver Screen: Paranormal Activity III ***1/2
Silver Screen: Paranormal Activity IV *
Silver Screen: ParaNorman ***1/2
Silver Screen: Parker ***1/2
Silver Screen: Paul ***1/2
Silver Screen: Piranha 3D ***1/2
Silver Screen: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides *1/2
Silver Screen: Playing for Keeps 1/2*
Silver Screen: Predators ***
Silver Screen: Premium Rush ***
Silver Screen: Priest 1/2*
Silver Screen: Project X 1/2*
Silver Screen: Prometheus ***1/2
Silver Screen: Real Steel *
Silver Screen: Red ***
Silver Screen: Red Dawn *
Silver Screen: Red Tails **
Silver Screen: Resident Evil: Retribution *
Silver Screen: Rise of the Planet of the Apes ****
Silver Screen: Safe ***
Silver Screen: Safe Haven *1/2
Silver Screen: Safe House ***
Silver Screen: Salt ***
Silver Screen: Savages ***1/2
Silver Screen: Scott Pilgrim versus the World ***1/2
Silver Screen: Scream IV *
Silver Screen: Seeking a Friend for the End of the World **1/2
Silver Screen: Seven Psychopaths ***1/2
Silver Screen: Sex and the City II 1/2*
Silver Screen: Shaft and Coffy: Novotny Lawrence Discusses the Blaxploitation Movement
Silver Screen: Shark Night 3D 1/2* -- Apollo 18 **
Silver Screen: Side Effects ****1/2
Silver Screen: Silent House **1/2
Silver Screen: Silver Linings Playbook ***1/2
Silver Screen: Sinister ***1/2
Silver Screen: Skyfall ****
Silver Screen: Skyline *
Silver Screen: Snitch ***
Silver Screen: Snow White and the Huntsman **1/2
Silver Screen: Soldiers Speak Out: Carbondale Oscar Winner Barb Trent’s Latest Film
Silver Screen: Something Borrowed *
Silver Screen: Source Code ****1/2
Silver Screen: Splice ****
Silver Screen: Star Trek into Darkness ****
Silver Screen: Straw Dogs *1/2
Silver Screen: Straw Dogs *1/2
Silver Screen: Super Eight ****
Silver Screen: Taken II **
Silver Screen: Ted ***1/2
Silver Screen: That's My Boy *
Silver Screen: The A-Team **1/2
Silver Screen: The Academy Honors... The Boys and Girls Club of Carbondale
Silver Screen: The Adjustment Bureau *1/2
Silver Screen: The Amazing Spider-Man **1/2
Silver Screen: The American ****
Silver Screen: The Artist ****
Silver Screen: The Audubon Trilogy: Fugitive Narratives and the Drama of the Natural World
Silver Screen: The Avengers ****
Silver Screen: The Big Muddy Film Festival
Silver Screen: The Big Wedding *
Silver Screen: The Big Year *1/2
Silver Screen: The Bourne Legacy ***
Silver Screen: The Boys and Girls Club Night at the Oscars
Silver Screen: The Call **1/2
Silver Screen: The Campaign ***
Silver Screen: The Company You Keep *1/2
Silver Screen: The Dark Knight Rises ***
Silver Screen: The Debt ***1/2
Silver Screen: The Descendants ****1/2
Silver Screen: The Dictator ***1/2
Silver Screen: The Dilemma *1/2
Silver Screen: The Expendables **1/2
Silver Screen: The Expendables II *1/2
Silver Screen: The Fighter ****
Silver Screen: The Five-Year Engagement ***1/2
Silver Screen: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo *
Silver Screen: The Great Gatsby ****
Silver Screen: The Green Hornet **1/2
Silver Screen: The Guilt Trip ***
Silver Screen: The Hangover Part II **1/2
Silver Screen: The Hangover Part III *1/2
Silver Screen: The Host 1/2*
Silver Screen: The Hunger Games ***
Silver Screen: The Ides of March ****
Silver Screen: The Internship **1/2
Silver Screen: The Karate Kid ***
Silver Screen: The Karate Kid ***
Silver Screen: The King's Speech ****
Silver Screen: The Last Airbender *
Silver Screen: The Last Exorcism ***
Silver Screen: The Last Stand ***
Silver Screen: The Lincoln Lawyer ***
Silver Screen: The Lucky One *1/2
Silver Screen: The Man with the Iron Fists **1/2
Silver Screen: The Master ****1/2
Silver Screen: The Mechanic **1/2
Silver Screen: The Next Three Days ***
Silver Screen: The Other Guys ***
Silver Screen: The Perks of Being a Wallflower ****
Silver Screen: The Place Beyond the Pines ****1/2
Silver Screen: The Possession *
Silver Screen: The Purge *
Silver Screen: The Raven *
Silver Screen: The Rite *
Silver Screen: The Roommate *1/2
Silver Screen: The Rum Diary ***
Silver Screen: The Score Card , February 24, 2011 Edition
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Silver Screen: The Sitter ***1/2
Silver Screen: The Social Network ****1/2
Silver Screen: The Sorcerer's Apprentice **
Silver Screen: The Thing **1/2
Silver Screen: The Three Stooges ***
Silver Screen: The Tourist **
Silver Screen: The Town ***1/2
Silver Screen: The Tree of Life *****
Silver Screen: The Twilight Saga: Eclipse *1/2
Silver Screen: The Vow **
Silver Screen: The Watch **
Silver Screen: The Woman in Black **
Silver Screen: The Words 1/2*
Silver Screen: Thirty Minutes or Less ***1/2
Silver Screen: This Is Forty ****
Silver Screen: Thor ***
Silver Screen: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy ***1/2
Silver Screen: To Rome with Love ***1/2
Silver Screen: Total Recall **1/2
Silver Screen: Tower Heist ***
Silver Screen: Toy Story III ****
Silver Screen: Transformers: Dark of the Moon *1/2
Silver Screen: True Grit ****1/2
Silver Screen: Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part II *
Silver Screen: Unknown ***
Silver Screen: Unstoppable **
Silver Screen: Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps ****
Silver Screen: Wanderlust ***1/2
Silver Screen: War Horse **
Silver Screen: Water for Elephants ***
Silver Screen: We Bought a Zoo ****
Silver Screen: Wrath of the Titans 1/2*
Silver Screen: Wreck-it Ralph ***1/2
Silver Screen: X-Men: First Class ***
Silver Screen: Your Highness ***1/2
Silver Screen: Zero Dark Thirty ****1/2
Silver Screen: Zookeeper *


Who:
What:
Where:
When:
Pictured: This Is the End.
Bryan Miller

> opening this week in Carbondale (Friday unless otherwise noted).

< leaving Carbondale this Friday.


For more film reviews and capsules, see the Nightlife section of <http://www.CarbondaleRocks.com>.


by Bryan Miller unless otherwise credited.


After Earth (PG-13, *): Costar Will Smith is credited with the idea that spawned this movie, which perhaps explains the heavy Scientology subtext, not to mention how the movie seems only to exist as a vehicle for the uninspiring Jaden Smith. The two costar as a father and son in a distant future who crash land on an uninhabited Earth, where the son must undertake a journey fraught with deadly flora and fauna-- not to mention an alien hitchhiker-- to find the machine that will signal for their rescue. This basically simple plot is overlaid with a bunch of kooky flourishes that create an unnecessary, elaborate mythology devoid of any real meaning. Attempts to artificially enhance the drama draw on videogame clichZs that poorly serve the narrative. Even worse: The dreaded M. Night Shyamalan directs.

Fast and Furious VI (PG-13, **): Improbably, the Fast and Furious series has become one of the most financially successful franchises in film history. Even more improbably, the fourth and fifth entries in the series actually saw a relative increase in quality, increasingly over-the-top stunts and setpieces that generated enough dumb thrills to call them successes. This chapter, however, which directly leads into a forthcoming seventh movie, is a dud, with an overstuffed cast and a climax that’s silly even by the franchise’s own internal standards, defying not just physics but logic. Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster, and even Michelle Rodriguez, who was killed off two movies ago, return along with additions Dwayne Johnson and Gina Carano to battle a generic team of bad guys for an even more generic deadly device that might as well be called a MacGuffin Bomb. The tone is too serious for a movie this silly, and aside from a cool chase sequence involving a runaway tank, the trademark action sequences feel pat.

< Frances Ha (R, ****1/2): Noah Baumbach gets back to the comedy roots he laid down in the cult-classic Kicking and Screaming with this excellent character study that, like its heroine, is free-spirited but teetering on the verge of melancholy. Frances (Greta Gerwig) is a struggling modern dancer whose career and lifestyle begin to seem increasingly unsustainable when her codependent best friend (Mickey Sumner) moves out and gets a boyfriend. She goes on an aimless journey, and so too does the film, or at least it seems to, but the ace script cowritten by dynamite performer Gerwig is wily, and form follows function-- the questions of whether Frances and the film will both find their way become intertwined. It’s funny, big-hearted stuff that’s smartly articulated but delivered with supreme naturalism. Baumbach and Gerwig are a dream team.

The Great Gatsby (PG-13, ****): Baz Luhrmann adds a lot of embellishments to this livewire adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s American masterpiece-- an anachronistic hip-hop soundtrack, reconstrued racial politics, and 3D, not to mention a stupid frame story bookending the novel’s action. By and large, Luhrmann’s flourishes add value and some real novelty to what could otherwise be a stiff, conservative adaptation, and what it sacrifices in its goofiest moments it makes up for in fantastic ones. Leonardo DiCaprio stars as the mysterious playboy Gatsby, who throws lavish parties hoping to attract the attention of lost love Daisy (Carey Mulligan). With the help of his new pal, Daisy’s cousin Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire), Gatsby finally gets his wish, with disastrous consequences. This is a lively if unconventional interpretation of the book, not a replacement for it but a nice companion piece, and Luhrmann mostly makes the right decisions in the critical moments, making this an absolutely worthwhile oddity. In 2D only.

< The Hangover Part III (R, *1/2): The sequel to the smash-hit Hangover had the boys (Zach Galifianakis, Bradley Cooper, and Ed Helms) getting drugged up and losing a member of the group before yet another wedding. It was stupidly improbable, but turns out no less dumb than doing a sequel without an actual hangover. Here the fellas, on a mission to take the increasingly out-of-control Alan to a sanitarium, are waylaid by a gangster (John Goodman) who wants to use them to find Leslie Chow (Ken Jeong), who absconded with $20 million in gold. The result is a generic road comedy that lacks the clever structure and audacious gags of the first two. Series director and now cowriter Todd Phillips attempts to nostalgize their previous adventures and cap the trilogy off with heart-warming callbacks, which is a betrayal of the crass, borderline-nihilistic humor that made the original such a success.

The Internship (PG-13, **1/2): Wedding Crashers costars Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson reunite in this tepid spiritual sequel in which the boys play fun-loving doofuses caught on the wrong end of the economic downturn. They apply for a competitive internship at Google, which pits them against the best and brightest new college grads, but during the course of assembling their scrappy team of nerds Vaughn and Wilson teach the book-smart kids a little something about life. It’s so by-the-numbers it seems directly generated by a sentient version of the Final Draft screenplay-writing software, although perhaps it was written directly by Google-- the movie feels like a feature-length infomercial for the booming tech company. No data mining references to find here. Let’s just hope the Bing movie is better.

Iron Man III (PG-13, **1/2): Writer/director Shane Black (Lethal Weapon, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) takes over the Iron Man franchise, which seems particularly lackluster post-Avengers. A bevy of subplots and superfluous supporting players isn’t enough to distract from a stupefyingly simple plot and one-note characters motivated by nothing more than plot necessity. An evil terrorist leader called the Mandarin (Ben Kingsley), who is from a country that is not China, is somehow in cahoots with an evil scientist (Guy Pearce) driven to villainy after being snubbed once a party. Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) must contend with this, plus distractions galore from his girlfriend (Gwyneth Paltrow) and generic best friend (Don Cheadle) in between quips and lackluster action sequences-- although admittedly the final setpiece, featuring an armada of Iron Man suits, is pretty damn cool. Downey’s charisma has been reduced to a cheap special effect in this bland blockbuster. In 2D only.Man of Steel*): Christopher Nolan produces and Zack Snyder directs this god-awful update of the Superman story, stripping it of brightness and levity and making having superpowers seem like a total drag. Clark Kent (Henry Cavill) is actually Kal-El, the last son of Krypton, raised by his adopted parents (Diane Lane and Kevin Costner) after his planet was destroyed. The few remaining Kryptonians, led by General Zod (Michael Shannon), come to Earth looking to turn it into New Krypton, and only Kal can stop them. It’s a straightforward story mangled into nonsensicality by a lot of unnecessary diversions and embellishments. The awkwardly structured script keeps the story from ever settling into a rhythm, so the final product turns out to be a relentlessly nonsensical, decontextualized group of action sequences. The performers, including Amy Adams as Lois Lane, do their best, but there’s nothing they can do to redeem this occasionally pretty but consistently moronic, self-serious material. In 2D and 3D. (PG-13,

Now You See Me (PG-13, 1/2*): One of the most flagrantly stupid movies in years. Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher, and Dave Franco costar as magicians who are brought together by a fifth mystery man who helps them plot elaborate tricks in which they rob banks and give the money to their audiences. Mark Ruffalo is the FBI agent tasked with tracking them down, with some aid from professional magician-debunker Morgan Freeman. The plot is a convoluted, hilariously implausible mess leading up to a big reveal that plays more like a punchline. God-awful director Louis Leterrier can’t recreate the literally impossible magic tricks with practical effects, but must use digital wizardry, which isn’t magical in the slightest. An insult not just to the audience’s intelligence, but to intelligence itself.

The Purge (R, *): Writer/director James DeMonaco squanders a potentially interesting premise in this mixed-up home-invasion thriller masquerading as B-movie social critique. In the America of 2022, crime and unemployment have been solved with the annual purge, when all crime is legal for a period of twelve hours. The specifics of how this works are never discussed, but the big concept is ultimately just used as an excuse to set up a basic and not-too-thrilling thriller about a man (Ethan Hawke) trying to protect his family from invading hordes. The film feigns interest in moral complexity a few times without ever having the intelligence or attention span required to follow up on its promises, instead delivering an unimpressive carnival of carnage that gets the audience hooting for all the wrong reasons.

Star Trek into Darkness (PG-13, ****): J.J. Abrams’s sequel to his pretty nifty Star Trek reboot is sleeker and shinier than the last installment, but not smarter. Almost all traces of the franchise’s fondness for moral dilemma and cosmically rendered social-justice issues have been swept aside in favor of breakneck action sequences that are undeniably pretty thrilling. Kirk (Chris Pine), Spock (Zachary Quinto), and the rest of the crew (Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, John Cho, and Anton Yelchin) venture toward hostile Klingon territory to seek vengeance on an assassin (Benedict Cumberbatch) who attacked Starfleet, only to discover their target is one of their oldest and deadliest foes, and that they may have been manipulated by forces back home. There’s some too-clever inversion of the original series’ second movie, but a dynamite cast and some awe-inspiring images of space, along with a great turn by Cumberbatch, keep it exciting even if it is all pretty frivolous. In 2D only.


Also in or Coming to Local Theaters

Before Midnight (R): Third installment in a series of experimental, hyper-verbose romantic dramas from director Richard Linklater. The original traced one night spent by wayward travelers Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, who reunited in the sequel–filmed in real time-- in which the two met again for the first time in eight years. The latest rexamines their lives nine years after rekindling the relationship.

Epic (PG): In this computer-animated cartoon adventure, a teenager gets miniaturized and embroiled in a conflict between warring sects of tiny forest creatures. Featuring the now-mandatory rundown of celebrity voice talent, in this case Colin Farrell, Josh Hutcherson, and Aziz Ansari. In 2D and 3D.

Monsters University (G): Pixar goes back to the well for another sequel, this one a prelude to an earlier hit that shows how monsters Mike (Billy Crystal) and Sully (John Goodman) met at college. Featuring the usual lineup of celebrity guest voices, including Charlie Day, Steve Buscemi, Helen Mirren, Dave Foley, and Aubrey Plaza. In 2D and 3D.

< Mud (PG-13): Matthew McConaughey stars as a fugitive who convinces two young boys to hide him. Also starring Reese Witherspoon.

This Is the End (R): Seth Rogen and his Superbad cowriter Evan Goldberg script and direct this comedy about a bunch of celebrities playing caricatures of themselves who devolve into pettiness after the apocalypse begins during one of their parties. Featuring Jonah Hill, James Franco, Paul Rudd, Craig Robinson, and the usual Apatow/Rogen crew.

World War Z (PG-13): Brad Pitt stars as a United Nations employee searching for the connections that will help him stop the global zombie apocalypse in this loose, PG-13-rated adaptation of Max Brooks’s popular novel. In 2D and 3D.