WEEKEND PIC Dec 5 - 7, 2008
NEW This Week:
a) BODY OF LIES (espionage thriller with Leonardo DiCaprio, Russell Crowe pictured above, Mark Strong, and Golshifteh Farahani) Rating * * * 1/2 (out of 4): Ridley Scott's thriller on how a CIA team operates between its Langley HQ guy and an agent in the Middle East is both smart and intense. The plot is rather convoluted but the pay-off is really satisfying.
b) TRANSPORTER 3 (action thriller with Jason Statham, Natalya Rudakova, Francois Berleand, Robert Knepper and Jeroen Krabbe) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): If you want ridiculous stunts, chases and crashes, you got them all. Just don't expect director Olivier Megaton to top up on logic and intelligence. (Reviewed below)
c) WILD CHILD (school girl drama with Emma Roberts, Natasha Richardson, Kimberley Nixon, Juno Temple, Sophie Wu, Alex Pettyfer, Georgia King, and Aidan Quinn) Rating * * (2 stars): This tale about a rich Malibu brat being sent to a UK boarding school to learn some important life lesson, is as corny and cliched as 'Mean Girls'.
STILL GOING STRONG:
1. BOLT (animated comedy with John Travolta, Miley Cyrus, Susie Essman and Mark Walton) Rated * * * (3 stars): This entertaining canine road-trip movie should put Walt Disney Pictures back in the running for Top Dog in the animation stakes, instead of Underdog. (Reviewed below)
2. TWILIGHT (love story with Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Billy Burke, Ashley Greene, Nikki Reed and Jackson Rathbone) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): This long-awaited chick-flick is expected to replace the Harry Potter franchise, with its popular book appeal. But the attraction seems limited to young girls. (Reviewed below).
3. QUANTUM OF SOLACE (Bond film with Daniel Craig and Olga Kurylenko, pictured above, Judi Dench, Giancarlo Giannini, Gemma Arterton, Mathieu Amalric and Olga Kurylenko) Rated * * * (3 stars): Director Marc Forster takes the Bond franchise closer to the Bourne films in this sequel to 'Casino Royale'. Many of the 007 traditions are discarded for a shorter and more functional action film. (Reviewed below).
4. MADAGASCAR: ESCAPE 2 AFRICA (animated comedy voiced by Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett Smith and Sacha Baron Cohen) Rated * * * (3 stars): It's not new but an improved sequel on the exploits of a bunch of zoo animals 'let loose' into the wild. Hearty laughs and shakin' music. (Reviewed below)
5. IGOR (animated comedy with voices of John Cusack, Steve Buscemi, Jennifer Coolidge, John Cleese and Jay Leno) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): It looks like someone is trying to copy Tim Burton's creations with this tale about an 'Igor' (scientist sidekick) who becomes the mad Frankenstein himself. (Reviewed below)
6. LAKEVIEW TERRACE (drama with Samuel L. Jackson, Patrick Wilson and Kerry Washington) Rating * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): Starts off as an engaging drama about a nasty neighbour in a US suburb but goes downhill with a loud and dumb ending.