Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Capsule Review Cavalcade: Movies Volume III

This brief set of capsule reviews takes you slowly back in time, from a movie out this month, to two movies released 3 years ago.

VALENTINE'S DAY (2010) – Rated PG-13, 125 minutes
A bevy of stars are involved in this travelogue of love in Los Angeles. We go back and forth and back and forth between Ashton Kutcher, Shirley MacLaine, Julia Roberts, Taylor Swift, Topher Grace & Anne Hathaway - plus several others - to see how the holiday of hearts treats them. It does its job as a tolerable movie to see with a date, but leaves no huge lasting impression. Should do well once it hits TV, as there's little to digest, and a lot of chances for the ladies to "aww" and tear up. ***¼

WATCHMEN (2009) – Rated R, 162 minutes
Adapted from a comic book, "Watchmen" is set in an alternate reality where Nixon is president into the 80s and the Cold War is hotter than ever. Your heroes are a group of vigilantes in costume who include the blue and naked Dr. Manhattan. The anti-superheroes and timeline were interesting to me, although their Dick Nixon has hilarious prosthetics out of SNL's closet. Despite being maybe a bit too long, I welcomed this gritty spectacle and would easily watch a sequel. ****

THE BOYS & GIRLS GUIDE TO GETTING DOWN (2007) – Rated R, 92 minutes
This comedy takes the form of a 90 minute educational piece about the basics of "getting down." Learn about how to score drugs, how to get in to the hottest clubs, drink and drive - it's all there. I liked the movie's style, combining dry narration with scenes on the town and experiments in the lab. Reminded me of the movie adaptation of "Hitchhiker's Guide" in a way. Funny moments and keen observations on party life came forth, but at a not-so-even pace. ***

OUTSOURCED (2007) – Rated PG-13, 103 minutes
Josh Hamilton stars as Todd, a man working at a company selling uberpatriotic chotchkes on the web whose job is outsourced to India. He gets roped into traveling across the world to train the people taking his place, slowly but surely falling in love with the land, and one of the employees at his call center. This had a TV movie vibe, with so-so acting, predictable outcomes and okay production values. It produced enough laughs and smiles for what it was. ***

No comments: