Every Monday, I watch the trailers, read the plot synopses, and check out who’s involved in the films that are slated for theatrical release for the following Friday. If I find myself wanting to go see or rent the film then that movie’s creators have GOT ME. Likewise, if the film in question has little to no appeal or redeeming value, that movie’s creators have LOST ME. If ever I am completely on the fence about a film, I will generally give that film the benefit of the doubt and proclaim it as a “GOT ME” since some interest exists.
Here are my thoughts on the movies releasing the week of April 29th, 2011:
starring Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Directed by Justin Lin. Rated PG-13.
This Friday! A pay-per-view event! The match we could only wonder about… ’till now! THE ROCK vs. DIESEL (Vin, not “Big Daddy Cool”)! It’s gonna be a slobber-knocker!
I must admit I’ve only seen the original film, The Fast and the Furious (fittingly, at a drive-in). I wasn’t as impressed with it as my peers seemed to be. Through all the flashy speed-demon cars, smoldering new hunks, and the girl-girl make out sessions at late night parties, I saw an ugly mess of contrived plot. Granted, these movies purely exist for the action sequences, but why would I pay up front for that when I could find that satisfaction via YouTube?
Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil
starring the vocal talent of Hayden Panettiere, Glenn Close, and Patrick Warburton. Directed by Mike Disa. Rated PG.
Skipped the original and skipping this one too. The animation looks like a video game interlude between levels (a la Ratchet and Clank). The humor is also apparently content with being a touch racist – I certainly wasn’t laughing at that green giant copping a ‘tude with swivel-hips in the trailer. The funniest aspect seems to be Warburton as the Goofy-esque Wolf. However, if the crotch-hit joke is any indication, his subtle bass delivery lacks the personality of Kelsey Grammer (which is saying something). This lame attempt at fairy tale skewering looks like a good excuse to stay home and pop in Shrek for the 195th time.
starring Aimee Teegarden, Thomas McDonnell, and DeVaughn Nixon. Directed by Joe Nussbaum. Rated PG.
UPDATE: Rated NC-17 for strong sexual content, lewd behavior, graphic language, and adult content – all in the final scenes.
Just kidding. This looks terrible, and I shouldn’t have to explain why.
Dylan Dog: Dead of Night
starring Brandon Routh, Anita Briem, and Sam Huntington. Directed by Kevin Munroe. Rated PG-13.
Looks pretty crappy except for Huntington’s undead newbie. There are homages to Griffin Dunne in An American Werewolf in London with the character’s desire to cope with his new zombie identity. Huntington is an underrated character actor I’ve watched since he was a child in (sadly awful) films like Jungle 2 Jungle and Detroit Rock City. However, even with Huntington, this comic book adaptation seems like a failed attempt to capture the combined spirits of Blade, Men in Black, and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. The final result comes off like an appropriately canceled spin-off of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer“.
starring Koji Yakusho, Takayuki Yamada, and Yusuke Iseya. Directed by Takashi Miike. Rated R.
Okay, this looks awesome!… Like a ripoff of Seven Samurai? Yes, absolutely, but in Takashi Miike I trust.
Miike is also the director of what is currently my favorite horror film, 1999’s Audition. He’s made a name for himself as a cult favorite in Japan and, along with Michael Haneke and Hayao Miyazaki, makes my shortlist of foreign filmmakers that more people should be talking about. 13 Assassins is his latest, and the production value appears to rock.
Return next Monday, May 2nd, for another edition of GOT ME or LOST ME.