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insidious

Insidious stars Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne and Ty Simpkins. It is the kind of scareflick we prefer -- no slice 'n' dice in this story of dead souls on the astral plane trying to cross back to our reality. The suspense builds and builds and builds and be very glad we don't give away the ending. . .  which we hated (but telling you why gives it away and we will never do that). [$6]

Something Borrowed

Something Borrowed stars Ginnifer Goodwin and Colin Egglesfield as a pair of legal types who have loved each other for years... and not recognized it until he is about to marry her best friend from childhood, Kate Hudson. For those that have no interest in Thor, here's your femme targeted dateflick. We got stuck in the middle of an audience segment that wouldn't shut up for the full run of the film. Some smartass teen told me to do something biologically impossible when I asked her to keep it down.

There Be Dragons

There Be Dragons from writer/ director Roland Joffee tells the story of two childhood friends, one of whom will eventually become a Catholic saint. The film leans so heavily on RC symbolism that yours Cranky -- sorry, folks, I'm a nice Jewish boy from Brooklyn -- couldn't follow the story, other than the basics. That's not enough to get any kind of recommendation

Bridesmaids

Bridesmaids stars Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph and, frankly, is wet your pants (sic) funny. Non- stop gags as a group of bridesmaids decide to party like, well, the guys from The Hangover. It's rude and raunchy humor and highly recommended (as long as you have no right wing hang ups).
Ceremony

Ceremony stars Michael Angarano as a guy intent on disrupting the impending nuptials of former flame Uma Thurman. He gets a long forgotten pal (Reece Thompson) to foot the bill for the rental car and trip - ostensibly to rekindle the friendship. Thurman's role is really minor and the overall film just isn't all that interesting.

narnia

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader is the third in the franchise based on kiddie novels by CS Lewis. Do not start with this one if you haven't read the books or seen the earlier films (which probably means you don't have kids, like Cranky).

garden of eden

Hemingway's The Garden of Eden is based on an unpublished novel  by the legendary writer, discovered  after his death. It details the extended honeymoon of writer David Bourne (Jack Huston) and his beautiful wife, Catherine (Mena Suvari) Wife's gift to her husband is the beauteous Marita (Caterina Murino). Yeah, like that ... until it isn't.

happy thankyou more please

HappyThankYouMorePlease "got the big buzz at a film festival." Three stories run in parallel and most are not grounded in anything resembling reality. Those who detest the usual cineplex releases will love being bored silly by this release

Hop

Hop stars James Marsden as a guy who once saw the real Easter Bunny and now, as a grown up, is paired with the son of same (voiced by Russell Brand), who doesn't want the job... bt there is a nutty little baby chicken who wants the job and... that means war! If you have kids to bring, do so. The little ones next to us were bouncing up and down, clapping. Cranky enjoyed the humor but, hey, we're Jewish <g> Wallpaper downloads here

How Do You Know

How Do You Know stars Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Paul Rudd and Jack Nicholson. No review. Why? Disabilities and wretched weather do not mix. But the film is courtesy writer/director James L Brooks, perhaps the most brilliant creative mind in the highbrow comic field. Brooks created the Mary Tyler Moore show in 1979 and The Simpsons in 1990. His film successes include Terms of Endearment and As Good As It Gets. We've got high hopes.

insidious

Insidious stars Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne and Ty Simpkins. It is the kind of scareflick we prefer -- no slice 'n' dice in this story of dead souls on the astral plane trying to cross back to our reality. The suspense builds and builds and builds and be very glad we don't give away the ending. . . which we hated (but telling you why gives it away and we will never do that). [$6]

Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre is a new adaptation of what could have been the very first chick flick, if there had been such things in the middle of the nineteenth century. Cranky's a middle aged, straight guy. We were bored silly. Ladies with control over their men (or guys who want to earn points) go here.

Lord of the Dance

Lord of the Dance brings Michael Flatley's worldwide dance phenomenon to the big screen. For those that have seen the show live, memories will be kindled. For the rest of us, PBS has hashed the format into a pulp and leaves this film looking pretty much like everything else we've seen on TV. (except for the talking head that interrupts asking you to support public television)

Morning Glory

A dateflick for us grown ups, Morning Glory stars Harrison Ford as a network evening news anchor demoted to "Daybreak," a morning show that looks a lot like a second rate Today Show. Rachel McAdams is the new exec. producer and views this as her big shot. The hassle of trying to get Ford to go his job provides most of the comic oomph (as does Diane Keaton as the co-anchor. The film is as fun as it is uneven. It'll be a better rental but, as the way-too-serious and somewhat awards-worthy films roll out in the just started Oscar wannabe season, if you're looking for something fluffy and disposable for an evening, this is it.

People vs. George Lucas

The People vs. George Lucas, a documentary moving from city to city is the best of this genre since Trekkies. Lucas and his creation is praised to the Heavens... until the coming of Jar Jar Binks. If fanboys can't find it in a theater, wait and buy it PPV or on DVD. It's fun.
Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides

We walked into our screening of Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides with a feeling of dread. We'll save you the time by noting that the last two episodes bored us silly and got a whopping $0 rating. Imagine our surprise when we walked out of this one with a big smile on our face. Featuring Blackbeard and Mermaids and Zombies. (Oh my). Spanish buccaneers as well. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is a sloppy ride of a movie, but we enjoyed the ride this time out. As well as the thumbs up we've got tons of wallpaper downloads starting here plus a special set sized for the oversized laptops that seem to be popping up everywhere we go. (click here)

Paul

Paul stars Seth Rogen. No, this E.T. doesn't fart -- that's left to all the humans whose path the alien star crosses. The film is a consistent chuckle, meaning take a date and see it with a good sized crowd. It won't be worth the time or money any other way . . . unless you indulge in certain things herbal. Then you'll have an even better time -- no, you don't need it and yes, we gave up weed a long time ago. It is what it is.

Red Riding Hood

Red Riding Hood stars Amanda Seyfried with the twist being that the big bad wolf is now a werewolf . . . then Gary Oldman continues with the hunter thing. Julie Christie is Grandma. Cranky liked it. All the other critics didn't.Wallpapers here

Rubber

It is stolen from its mother earth. It is mauled in fire pits, heated until it melts. Frozen in the depths of space. It is bundled into balls and whacked with sticks.It takes a beating or carries a ton of automobile hour after hour, day after day. Until the day that one particular Rubber automobile tire stood up for all the rest of its ilk and fights back with psychokinetic, head-bursting powers. Who knew? Just as strange as it is entertaining, Rubber will become a great midnight movie (if such things still exist) [$6]

Sanctum

Half a dozen (give or take) spelunkers -- cave explorers -- get trapped far below the earth's surface and have to find a way out in Sanctum, a so-so film which offers up pictures as spectacular as the script is underdeveloped. Add the thickness of Down Under accents and all the film's background is pretty much lost quickly. Were it not for the spectacular images we'd say pass. But those images, coupled with what story survives, makes Sanctum a recommended film if you see it on an IMAX screen. We'd build wallpapers of some of that imagery, but none of it is in the press material so now you've got to go <g>

Source Code

Source Code stars Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan and Vera Farmiga in a great SF thriller that you could nitpick to death if you really wanted to. Not Cranky. This is a terrific drama about mind swapping and preventing a terrorist attack on Chicago and, of course, it's a love story, too. If we had both hands to write the full review, this is about as close to a $10 as you can get. [$9.50]

spy kids

We kept getting info about Spy Kids All the Time in the World 4D. . . and kept asking about screenings for the film. No one felt, like, any pressure about, you know, screening the thing for those of us in the grunt press -- there's probably a good reason why a dog is on the poster. They did provide enough stuff for wallpapers here

suckerpunch

What can we say about Sucker-Punch? Hot women. Lots of explosions. Wallpaper downloads. The violent fantasies of women in mental institutions forced into prostitution . . . and that's just the back story. We laid off the doobies years ago. This is a flat out awful film, and will be the top draw of the week.

Tangled

Tangled is available in both 2D and 3D and, whichever you choose, Disney's remake of the old Rapunzel tale is well worth the time and money. Truth: In it, cat-burglar  Flynn  Rider (Zachary Levy) climbs up and breaks into the tower occupied by the lovely captive Rapunzel (Mandy Moore). Rapunzel promptly takes Rider hostage. In return for freeing her from captivity, the pair embark on a whole mess of exciting adventures! Add a pair of anthropomorphic animals for that patent-pending Disney  touch and you'll have one darn good time in the theater. Take the li'l ones. Then Download Wallpapers here

tempest

The Tempest stars Helen Mirren in Shakespeare's drama of an exiled royal family, a magical storm, and political machinations that make everything better. Twisted to have a female royal pulling the strings may make traditionalists cringe; concentrate on the centuries out of date English and take the ride (better yet, wait to rent so you can go back and forth).

Tron Legacy

Tron Legacy, again stars Jeff Bridges and properly recaps the original story (in which a video game world turned out to be real), brings "real" danger to the our world and adds effects which seriously kick . The new story? Simply that the TronWorld has realized that there is another reality -- ours -- to conquer. Only the Son of the Creator (Garrett Hedlund) can stop the coming invasion. In these weeks filled with Oscar wannabees, this is where you go for the simple popcorn fix (assuming you can afford the costs of cinema popcorn... sheesh!) download wallpapers here

True Grit

True Grit, via Joel & Ethan Coen darn well should win the Best Cinematography Oscar because it's beautifully filmed. The story of a 14 year old girl (Hailee Steinfeld) who hires an alcoholic marshal (Jeff Bridges) to hunt the killer of her dad is, unfortunately, just plain dull. Matt Damon plays a Texas Ranger coincidentally hunting the same murderer.

Unstoppable

Unstoppable stars Denzel Washington and Chris Pines as train dudes who take down a runaway loaded with hazardous materials. Rosaria Dawson is the dispatcher trying to avert disaster. Not that disasters don't happen -- this is a Tony Scott movie -- and explosions and train wrecks supply more than enough fun. As awful as the script is, the film is a terrific sit. It is great fun and there was applause as credits rolled.

It's a movie. Capital "M". Go. Have Fun.

30 Minutes or Less

30 Minutes or Less stars Jesse Eisenberg. An obscenity filled, utterwaste of time. Perfect for those teens who haven't discovered the wonders of sex and who insist on using four letter words at least twice a sentence 'cuz they're old enough to be beyond parental control . . . every male out there knows exactly what we mean.

What's Your Number?

What's Your Number? stars Anna Faris as an "aging" single femme, convinced by a magazine article that one of the twenty men she has dated in her lifetime is The One. Chris Evans is the annoying neighbor across the hall (gee... do ya think???) A Romantic Comedy short on romance and utterly lacking anything funny. Those readers wondering how bad a film has to be to get a "ZERO" rating from us are invited to waste their cash to find out.

White Irish Drinkers

White Irish Drinkers is the story of brothers in Brooklyn, one (Geoff Wigdor) already embarked in a life of thievery and crime and looking to bring his kid bro' (Nick Thurston) into the fledgling family biz. The kid, though, hides his real talents, which would be artistic (as in drawing and painting) because, well, middle class tough Irish tend to view the arts as un-manly. A heavy script could have used some breathing room but a better than average sit for the art house crowd. Stephen Lang, Karen Allen and Peter Riegert are the brand names in supporting roles

Your Highness

Your Highness
stars Danny McBride, James Franco and Natalie Portman. Two knights - one an idiot and the other a stoner - quest to rescue the idiot's bride to be (Zooey Deschanel) from an evil warlock. Both are bested by Portman's character, the sole survivor of a village the warlock destroyed. Occasionally funny but, even as a stoner comedy, "occasionally" isn't enough.

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The Cranky Critic® is a Registered Trademark of, and his website is Copyright © 1995-2016 Chuck Schwartz. All Rights Reserved. Articles and interviews by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All Rights Reserved. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of and ©, ®, T their respective studios. Used by permission. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy AwardT(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. All Rights Reserved.