WEEKEND PIC - March 13 - 15, 2009
NEW THIS WEEK:
a. CITY OF EMBER (sci-fi fantasy with Bill Murray, Tim Robbins, Saoirse Ronan, Martin Landau, Mackenzie Crook, Toby Jones and Mary Kay Place) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): The sets of this underground city looks so fabulous and cool that they become the star of the show. Storywise, nothing much happens until the end of the movie. (Review below).
b. THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX (animated comedy with voices of Matthew Broderick, Robbie Coltrane, Frances Conroy, Tony Hale, Ciaran Hinds and Dustin Hoffman) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): This mouse tale from Pixar is not as funny or energetic as Ratatouille but it is adequate enough to serve as family entertainment for the school holidays.
c. DRAGONBALL EVOLUTION (sci-fi fantasy with Justin Chatwin, Chow Yun Fat, Emmy Rossum, James Marsters and Jamie Chung) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): Adapted from a Japanese children's comic book series, this one is mainly for the kids, especially those who are fans of the TV show and manga books. Chow is the main attraction here. (Review below)
STILL GOING STRONG:
1. MARLEY & ME (with Owen Wilson, Jennifer Aniston, Eric Dane, Kathleen Turner and Alan Arkin) Rated * * * (3 out of 4 stars): This doggie biopic of sorts has the twin aim of making us laugh and cry. Director David Frankel achieves this by over-manipulation, repetition and other tactics. (Review below).
2. WATCHMEN (with Malin Akerman, Billy Crudup, Matthew Goode, Carla Gugino, Jackie Earle Haley, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Patrick Wilson) Rating * * * (3 out of 4 stars): Adapted from a 12-part graphic novel, this long-awaited opus, about a reunion of sorts for costumed crime-fighters, is a treat for comic book fans. (Pictured above)
3. THE READER (with Kate Winslet, Ralph Fiennes, David Cross and Lena Olin) Rated * * * (3 stars): Basically a character study of a German woman accused of atrocities in the Holocaust, it has Winslet in her Oscar-winning role. However, censorship cuts make watchig the movie rather frustrating. (Review below).
4. JONAS BROTHERS: The 3D Concert Experience (musical with Kevin, Joe and Nick Jonas, "Big Rob" Feggans, Demi Lovato and Taylor Swift) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): Gimmicky and high-energy concert show in 3D - with brief glimpses to the Brothers' lifestyle and fandom. (Review below).
5. SEVEN POUNDS (mystery drama with Will Smith, Rosario Dawson, Woody Harrelson, Barry Pepper and Michael Ealy) Rated * * 1/2 (2.5 stars): After Pursuit of Happyness, director Gabriele Muccino collaborates with Smith to make an enigmatic weepie. With so many plotholes, it's not quite there. (Review below).
6. LOVE MATTERS (Singaporean comedy with Henry Thia, Mark Lee, Lai Ming and Yann Yann Yeo) Rating: * * (2 stars): This Jack Neo comedy about marriage, sex, porn and whatever is far from being Neo's best. Rather, it is a scattershot amalgam of his previous films.
7. STREET FIGHTER: THE LEGEND OF CHUN-LI (action adventure with Kristin Kreuk, Moon Bloodgood, Michael Clarke Duncan, Chris Klein, Neal McDonough and Robin Shou) Rated * (1 star): Brainless, plotless and utterly hopeless sequel to the 1994 turkey that was Street Fighter. (Review below).