Sunday, July 16, 2006

Movie Releases, 7/21

One of the most interesting movie weekends I have ever witnessed comes this Friday, with a slew of potentially entertaining flicks backed by well-known talent.

The comedy onslaught continues this weekend with My Super Ex-Girlfriend, another New York special effects comedy from Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman. Hollywood realized that just Owen Wilson last week wouldn't be enough, so his brother Luke fills in the void in this picture. He plays an average joe who dates an obsessive Fatal Attraction-esque Uma Thurman, who just so happens to be a superhero. Unfortunately, the trailers for this don't look too funny at all, but Rainn Wilson from "The Office" is here, as is Anna Faris--a real comedy is dying to be made with those two.

Back in one of the greatest years in the history of cinema, 1994, a little indie called Clerks launched Kevin Smith's career, which has been a bit spotty since. He has a fairly decent fanbase, but none of his movies have been huge hits for various reasons. Now, Smith is back to placating his fans with the sequel to Clerks. This movie looks like all the dumb teen comedies that have come out in the last few years, like Waiting. Here, Brian O'Halloran and Jeff Anderson reprise their roles from the original, where they are now working at a burger joint. Besides being filmed in color, something tells me this sequel will be highly incongruous to the original in tone and language, especially considering that the first one nearly got an NC-17 based on its dialogue alone.

Then, after that, we have another big animated movie with Robert Zemeckis and Steven Spielberg's names plastered all over it, Monster House. The title says it all. I question its release in the summer, since this could have played well in October. But, maybe there was a conflict. Anyway, this movie looks fairly entertaining, even if by now it seems like just another computer cartoon in a year with Hoodwinked, Doogal, Ice Age 2, Over the Hedge, and Cars already having been released. But it could be a big hit. We'll see.

And finally, getting us out of that comedy mold will be Lady in the Water. As much as I found Signs and The Village disappointing, M. Night Shyamalan still is a must-see director who can sell a movie on his name alone--and even those movies showed a sense of style, a guy who knows what he's doing behind the camera. Here, Paul Giamatti plays an apartment super who discovers a woman from another world located somewhere deep in the apartment complex's pool--it's Ron Howard's daughter Bryce. There's more than just her, of course, lots of scary kinds of stuff--and perhaps, that trademark Shyamalan surprise ending we've seen since The Sixth Sense? Anyway, I'm amped to see this, even if the original teaser trailer was one of the worst marketing ideas ever. Also, this movie scared the hell out of Disney before it was even shot and Warner Bros. took a chance. Could be great, or colossally terrible. Either way, it's a break from the billion sequels we get each summer.

Anyway, what makes this weekend so interesting is the varied choices a moviegoer has. I think My Super Ex-Girlfriend might get swamped by this, not to mention Clerks II, especially considering the glut in the comedy market when you add the second weeks of Little Man and You, Me, and Dupree. In fact, the awful marketing of MSEG and Clerks II, from their trailers alone, probably insured their doom. But Monster House, Lady in the Water, and the third week of Pirates of the Caribbean are all going to be in the mix for number one--my pick is Lady.


At 7/23/2006 03:06:00 AM, Blogger Reel Fanatic said...

As a member of Kevin Smith's devoted fanbase, I went to see Clerks 2 yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed .. I'd love to see him bring in about $20 million at the box office .. We'll see


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