WEEKEND PIC - March 6 - 9, 2008
NEW This Week:
a. 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. (Reviewed below)
b. WATCHMEN (pic, right, with Malin Akerman, Billy Crudup, Matthew Goode, Carla Gugino, Jackie Earle Haley, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Patrick Wilson) Rating * * * (3 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.
c. 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 watching the movie rather frustrating. (Reviewed below)
d. 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 (2D) glimpses to the Brothers' lifestyle and fandom. (Reviewed below)
STILL GOING STRONG:
1. SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE (drama with Dev Patel, Freida Pinto, Madhur Mittal, Anil Kapoor and Irrfan Khan) Rated * * * * (4 stars): With eight Oscars including one for Best Picture and Best Director, are you going to miss this one (my first 4-star movie of the year)? (Reviewed here)
2. SEX DRIVE (comedy with Josh Zuckerman, Amanda Crew, Clark Duke, James Marsden, Seth Green, Alice Greczyn and Katrina Bowden) Rated * * * (3 stars): Somewhat like American Pie-meets-Road Trip involving a trio of best friends. Passable teen comedy with enough humour, fun and heart. (Reviewed below)
3. 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. (Reviewed below)
4. 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.
5. PUNISHER: WAR ZONE (action thriller with Ray Stevenson, Dominic West, Julie Benz, Colin Salmon, Doug Hutchison, Dash Mihok, Wayne Knight and T.J. Storm) Rating: * * (2 stars): This third reincarnation of Marvel Comics' The Punisher (Stevenson) for the big screen may be an improvement on the earlier efforts but it is way below the standard of Iron Man and The Dark Knight. Why punish yourself?
6. 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): Based on the videogame, this is a brainless, plotless and utterly hopeless sequel to the 1994 turkey that was Street Fighter. (Reviewed below)