Welcome to Annotate This, where we gather reviews, trailers, and annotate the posters for movies coming out this week. It will help you decide what to avoid, what to see, and what to pretend to see. Click on the image above to add your comments to the mix. Guess what? The heat wave has ostensibly made movie reviews super grumpy and also creative with their reviews!
Directed with "amusing self-awareness" by James Wan (Saw, Insidious), by brothers Chad and Carey Hayes, this classic horror film is already being lauded as Wan's best film. Based on "true events," this centers on a possibly haunted Rhode Island
nightmare-maze farmhouse. It's one of the "smartest, most viscerally effective thrillers" with "committed performances" from Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor.
DreamWorks's new movie for kids features a snail that wants to race cars and does so by juicing up on nitrous oxide, but chill out about that, guys, it's just a movie! It's tired plot, but not without fun due to "loopy, clever jokes" and a voice cast that includes, Paul Giamatti, Bill Hader, Richard Jenkins, Maya Rudolph, Snoop Dogg, and Samuel L. Jackson. Ryan Reynolds plays the titular snail with his signature "peppy blandness."
Only God Forgives
Ryan Gosling is back in the gritty-beautiful vision of Nicolas Winding Refn, as the son of a drug-lord family. Kristen Scott Thomas sends RG, her son, to Bangkok to venge his brother's death. This was that movie that everyone at Cannes hated. Here are some choice lines:
- "Wallpaper emotes more than Ryan Gosling does"
- "Thin satiric lark inexplicably slowed down to the point of lethargy
- "A piece of solemnly preposterous revenge pulp"
- "I thought it was just about the worst fucking thing I’ve ever seen."
Okay, so Jeff Bridges and Ryan Reynolds (the snail from earlier), play two cops that are dead and they now work for the Rest In Peace Department to catch dead zombie-like people who are threatening our world. One reviewer says it was "too awful to review." Others say it's not that bad, but it's still not great.
A group of elite, attractive operatives have been given another mission in a series of beautiful vacation destinations—Paris, London, Moscow—to disable a "megaton device." The talented travelers? Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Helen Mirren, Anthony Hopkins, Mary-Louise Parker, and Catherine Zeta-Jones, of course! It only mimics a spy caper and fails to get back the "sly, laid-back pleasures" of its predecessor.
Computer Chess (July 17)
Girl Most Likely
This Kristen Wiig vehicle is sadly disappointing. Wiig plays Imogene, a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown, who returns to her mother and her new boyfriend, Annette Benning and Matt Dillon, in Atlantic City. All the actors are trying their best, and there are moments that amuse, but mostly it's hollow and forced.
Dealin' with Idiots
In Jeff Garlin's new film, he plays a comedian that interviews kid's baseball coaches and parents of players for new material for his next movie project. It's light, a little self-indulgent, but features a nice team of comedians.
The Act of Killing
This experimental, ground-breaking documentary from Joshua Oppenheimer involves asking war criminals to recreate the scenes in which they murdered thousands. It's "bizarre to the point of trippiness," but also succeeds in revealing real evil. Adrian Chen's piece on the movie here.
This sad, searing film about the cruelty of whale's captivity has already sparked a backlash from Sea World before the film even premiered. Rich Juzwiak's piece on the film is here.
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