Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Spring 2012 Movies!

I find it such a relief when a.) the weather warms up and b.) the movie releases start to be less stupid. The drought between awards season and springtime in the film world is such a sad, sad time.

Luckily, we had Hunger Games to tide us over.  Let's look at what's ahead until Summer Solstice...

Damsels in Distress - 4/16

Yes, I know that *technically*, this already released, but it hasn't released here, and I live in hope that either 1.) it will or 2.) I'll be able to see it during a forthcoming trip. I love the idea of a tribe of girls who, dressed as Betty Draper, go out to civilize the natives (i.e. fratboys) with tap dancing. Add Parks & Rec's Aubrey Plaza and Adam Brody, formerly of Gilmore Girls and The O.C, and I have every hope for a slightly twisted charmfest.

A girl's got to dream, right?

The Five-Year Engagement - 4/27

I seriously can't imagine being stuck in wedding-planning mode for five years, but I'm willing to watch Emily Blunt try. Blunt's been due for a breakout hit for a while - she's had Meryl Streep gunning for her since The Devil Wears Prada. It's anyone's guess if Five-Year Engagement will be her Bridesmaids moment (you know that comparisons will be inevitable), but the supporting cast won't hurt - Alison Brie (of Community and Mad Men) and Chris Pratt (Parks & Recreation) are the best friends (of sorts), and Mimi Kennedy (Midnight in Paris) and David Paymer (The American President, The Good Wife) play Jason Segel's parents, and Segel himself is getting all sorts of great press for finally bringing more than a tenuous smile to Michelle Williams' face.

The Avengers - 5/ 4

I worry, to be honest.

Yes, this is on the list. But I have deep, deep concerns that this will be a scattered, quip-filled mess. I say that as a Joss Whedon fan, and I'll be the first to admit that he's made a name for himself working with ensemble casts. The thing with his ensemble casts, though, is that they're always centered around one very strong main character. Even in an ensemble piece like Ocean's 11, Danny Ocean is the guy you know best. You know what motivates him, what he wants, and what he's willing to do to get it.

Will the motivations be this clear with so many characters who are main characters in their own realms? Difficult to say. But I am a fan, independently, of Jeremy Renner (who was great on his guest spot on House before The Hurt Locker made him a thing), Chris Evans (who managed to portray about half of the guys I ever worked with at summer camp in The Losers), Mark Ruffalo (who had me at "We're not friends anymore, Jenna,"), and Robert Downey, Jr. (obviously). But together?

We'll see. I'm willing to find out.

The Moonrise Kingdom - 5/25

Oh, Wes Anderson. When you're good, you're really really good. When you're uneven, you're still entertaining and surprising, so it's okay. I loved The Incredible Mr. Fox, and I'm quite excited about this project, which looks like an affectionate amalgamation of classic film styles and tropes. Also loving - the casting of Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton, Bruce Willis and Edward Norton. Note: the script is co-penned by Roman Coppola, son of Francis Ford, sister of Sofia.

Also: the use of Henry Purcell's Abdelazar theme, which tends to wind up in Jane Austen films is a nice touch.

Snow White and the Huntsman - 6/1

I don't know about you, but I'm tired of all of the press the Tale of Two Snows has managed to generate. Obviously, Tarsem's project tanked at the box office. The trailer for this one, helmed by newbie Rupert Sanders and written by Evan Daugherty (another newbie with a Robert DeNiro/John Travolta film in post-production), John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side), and Hossein Amini (Drive), has a much stronger looking trailer *until* Kristen Stewart starts talking.

Now, I'm not a KStew hater. I thought she was great in Adventureland, and it's about as fair to judge her acting ability in the Twilight franchise as it is Natalie Portman's in the Star Wars prequels.

However, not everyone can pull off a vaguely English accent, and the bits that we hear from dear Kristen sound forced (and they are bits - in two of the three trailers I've seen, there is a conspicuous lack of the title character actually talking).

But it looks terrific visually, and appropriately dark for a Grimm tale, and a gently wonky accent didn't sink Ever After, so we'll see how goes.

Safety Not Guaranteed - 6/8

Another limited release, meaning I may not see it until it hits DVD, but I find the idea to be charming and quirky, while realizing that "quirky" has become one of those overused words, like "edgy." I recognize that Aubrey Plaza seems to be playing another version of April here, but I'm not convinced that it's necessarily the wrong thing for the story. At some point, though, she might want to diversify if she don't want to be stuck delivering deadpanned one-liners (delicious though they may be) for the rest of her career.


I know Prometheus is supposed to be a "deal," but honestly it looks scary, and I prefer my Ridley Scott movies to be costumey and historical with gunk in the air and a rousing speech or two about doing the right thing.

Tesla, however, had her own take.

I do not get the feeling that she is much impressed, in the end.

So - summer officially starts on the 20th of June - what movies are you looking forward to? 

1 comment:

  1. I'm interested to see how The Avengers goes, too. I'm a big Iron Man fan (great lines) and Thor fan (good lines or not). But all together? Not sure.


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