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Mike's ProfileMike has a degree in Film from The University of Texas at Austin. He has worked in the entertainment industry for the past 25 years and sees two to four new movies in the theatre a week. Mike has a weekly movie blog where he reviews films both present and past at: lastonetoleavethetheatre.blogspot.com He can be followed on Twitter @lastonetoleave
Opening this week at a theatre near you:
Based on a true story, Ben Affleck directs this film and stars as a CIA agent who tries to save six Americans hiding at the Canadian ambassador’s home in Iran during the Iranian Hostage Crisis of 1979. His idea, pose as a Canadian filmmaker and have the Americans escape by acting as his Canadian crew. Argo website
What to Watch For: This film was one of the big crowd pleasers at the Toronto International Film Festival, and many critics feel Ben Affleck could get a Best Director nomination.
Word on the Street: The film is said to be extremely accurate; as the real-life CIA agent (who Affleck’s character is based on) went to Hollywood, hired a producer who had a real script and consulted with special effects coordinators.
My Take: If the reactions of film festivals are any indication, this will be a big hit both in the box office and at the Academy Awards™.
Seven Psychopaths (2012)
A screenwriter, Marty (Colin Farrell) is struggling to come up with his next script. All he has is a title, “Seven Psychopaths.” His best friend, Billy (Sam Rockwell), makes a living by stealing dogs and returns them to their owners for a reward. But Billy makes a big mistake – he has stolen the dog of a psychopathic mob boss (Woody Harrelson) who has vowed to find and kill the perpetrator who stole his beloved dog. Seven Psychopaths website
What to Watch For: This is a crime caper with a lot of comedy, much like Quentin Tarantino’s 1994 film, “Pulp Fiction.”
Word on the Street: While Christopher Walken steals every scene he’s in, the actor getting the great reviews is Sam Rockwell.
My Take: Mickey Rourke was set to star in this film as the mob boss but had a falling out with Director Martin McDonagh and was replaced by Woody Harrelson, who is said to be perfect for the role.
Please note that “Seven Psychopaths” is being released by CBS Films and I work for CBS Corporation.
A true-crime novelist (Ethan Hawke) finds a stash of home movies in the attic of his new house. When he watches the footage, he finds out a family was murdered there, and something sinister may still be in the house targeting his own family. Sinister website
What to Watch For: The film looks to use the “found footage” technique but with a twist, where the footage comes from home movies and not video.
Word on the Street: The film is getting some good reviews and excellent word of mouth that relays it as a legitimately scary film.
My Take: Writer/Director Scott Derrickson needs a hit after his disastrous 2008 film, “The Day Earth Stood Still.”
Here Comes the Boom (2012)
A high school biology teacher (Kevin James) takes up mixed martial arts to try to win money to save his school’s music program. Here Comes The Boom website
What to Watch For: Hollywood has been wanting to reach fans of mixed martial arts – will this be the first successful film to go after that market?
Word on the Street: James is a big MMA fan and worked out extremely hard for the role, including sparring with actual MMA fighters.
My Take: Hey, I’ll go see any film that Salma Hayek is in!
Releasing this week on Blu-ray and DVD:
Ridley Scott directed this “prequel” to his 1979 film, “Alien,” where a team of scientists are exploring space when they become stranded on an alien world; a world that has many hidden dangers. The cast includes Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron and Idris Elba. The DVD/Blu-ray contains not only alternate endings, but also alternate beginnings. Prometheus website
If you can’t go to the theatre this weekend, stay at home and watch movies on CW69.
Down with Love (2003) Set in 1960’s New York Barbara (Renee Zellweger) is a best-selling advice author. She meets her match when Catcher (Ewan McGregor), a journalist with a playboy reputation, decides to do an exposé on her.
Blue State (2007) John (Breckin Meyer), a Democrat to the core, decides to move to Canada after George W. Bush is re-elected. He picks Chloe (Anna Paquin) to be his travel-mate for the trip to Canada. John finds out though, that Canada may not be as perfect as he expected, and Chloe may be hiding a secret.