Remember the boffo box office from last weekend? Well…at least we’ll always have that.
Let’s bitch it out…
There are no big players for this second last week of March as the studios throw a bunch of mid-tier offerings to the wolves. They are likely hoping that anything survives against the behemoth that is Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, which will undoubtedly devour the competition for a second straight week.
March 24, 2017
Power Rangers (Wide)
- Cast: Elizabeth Banks (Walk of Shame), Bryan Cranston (Total Recall)
- Official Synopsis: Five ordinary teens must become something extraordinary when they learn that their small town of Angel Grove — and the world — is on the verge of being obliterated by an alien threat. Chosen by destiny, our heroes quickly discover they are the only ones who can save the planet. But to do so, they will have to overcome their real-life issues and before it’s too late, band together as the Power Rangers.
- Good for fans of: Dark and gritty updates, Transformers, teens with powers and problems
- Is it worth your time? Tough call. The reviews are decidedly mixed. Critics are divided about the directorial/narrative decision to focus on the teens’ challenges and conflicts for 1.5 hrs before a final 30 minute orgy of CGI. Some feel that the serious, gritty attempt helps to overcome the inherent campiness of the original premise, while others lament the lack of fun in favour of yet another Nolan/Batman Begins imitator.
- Cast: Dax Shepard (The Comebacks), Michael Peña (End of Watch), Kristen Bell (When in Rome)
- Official Synopsis: Jon Baker (Shepard) and Frank “Ponch” Poncherello (Peña) have just joined the California Highway Patrol (CHP) in Los Angeles but for very different reasons. Baker is a beaten up pro motorbiker trying to put his life and marriage back together. Poncherello is a cocky undercover Federal agent investigating a multi-million dollar heist that may be an inside job—inside the CHP.
- Good for fans of: 70s retreads, homoerotic panic humour, bad Kristen Bell movies
- Is it worth your time? Definitely not. This is less 21 Jump Street (ie: a clever meta take on an outdated premise) than Starsky & Hutch (ie: dick jokes and weak attempts to half-heartedly modernize an outdated premise without success).
- Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal (Enemy), Ryan Reynolds (Green Lantern), Rebecca Ferguson (The Girl on the Train)
- Official Synopsis: Life is a terrifying sci-fi thriller about a team of scientists aboard the International Space Station whose mission of discovery turns to one of primal fear when they find a rapidly evolving life form that caused extinction on Mars, and now threatens the crew and all life on Earth.
- Good for fans of: Generic hot A-List men, body horror
- Is it worth your time? Again – this is a mixed bag. A few reviews credit the film for legitimately making an effort to flesh out the characters before murdering them off one by one. Others suggest this is an inferior combination of The Thing and Alien. Your mileage may depend on how much you like those two films or space horror in general.
- Cast: Woody Harrelson (, Laura Dern (Inland Empire)
- Official Synopsis: Harrelson stars as Wilson, a lonely, neurotic and hilariously honest middle-aged misanthrope who reunites with his estranged wife (Dern) and gets a shot at happiness when he learns he has a teenage daughter (Isabella Amara) he has never met. In his uniquely outrageous and slightly twisted way, he sets out to connect with her.
- Good for fans of: Mid-life crises, About Schmidt
- Is it worth your time? Word on the street (i.e.: Rotten Tomatoes) is that Harrelson is good, but the rest of the movie doesn’t know quite how to keep him relatable. This seems like a classic case of a good performance in a slightly underwhelming movie.
- Cast: Alice Lowe (Kill List), Gemma Whelan (Game of Thrones)
- Official Synopsis: Widow Ruth (Lowe) is seven months pregnant when, believing herself to be guided by her unborn baby, she embarks on a homicidal rampage, dispatching anyone who stands in her way.
- Good for fans of: Independent horror, A L’interieur
- Is it worth your time? The reviews from the festival circuit have been quite positive, so despite the strange subject matter, this is worth checking out if it’s playing near you.
That’s it for this week. Next week we’re back to the curious case of whitewashing as ScarJo takes the lead as Major in the big screen (big $$$ gamble) adaptation of the classic anime text Ghost in the Shell. Plus an animated Trump baby and Jessica Chastain saves animals from Nazis.