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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:
The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013)
Magician Burt Wonderstone (Steve Carell) and his partner Anton Marvelton (Steve Buscemi) were once the toast of Las Vegas, wowing adoring crowds with their magic act. But times have changed, and now Vegas is ruled by street magician Steve Gray (Jim Carrey) whose stunts get more and more outrageous. Can Burt change his act in time to save his career? The Incredible Burt Wonderstone Website
What to Watch For: The screenplay was written by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, the same team who brought us 2011’s “Horrible Bosses.”
Word on the Street: Olivia Wilde beat out the likes of Michelle Monaghan, Sarah Silverman and Jessica Biel for the part of Jane, Burt’s former magician’s assistant.
My Take: I am looking forward to seeing Alan Arkin, hot off his Academy Award nomination, who plays the part of Rance Holloway, the magician who inspired Burt to get into magic.
The Call (2013)
A seasoned 9-1-1 operator, Jordan (Halle Berry), gets a call from a girl (Abigail Brelin) who has just been kidnapped from the inside of her abductor’s trunk. Jordan must suddenly use her training and wits to get the girl back safe and sound. The Call Website
What to Watch For: The film made headlines when Halle Berry was injured filming a fight sequence and had to be rushed to a hospital.
Word on the Street: Brad Anderson, best known for directing the 2004 film “The Machinist,” replaced veteran director Joel Schumacher (“Batman Forever”) before filming began.
My Take: Berry is in need of a box office hit, with her last success being 2006’s “X-Men: The Last Stand.”
India Stoker (Mia Wasikowska) is trying to cope with her father dying and her mother (Nicole Kidman) isn’t exactly the most stable of people. Things don’t get better when an uncle (Mathew Goode) whom India didn’t know existed, moves into the family home. India thought suspects that her uncle’s motives may not be in the best interest of her or her mother. Stoker Website
What to Watch For: The film is the first English language film for legendary South Korean director Chan-wook Park (“Oldboy”).
Word on the Street: The scriptwriter, Wentworth Miller, cited Alfred Hitchcock’s 1943 film “Shadow of a Doubt” as inspiration for the film.
My Take: Nicole Kidman continues her streak of interesting and challenging roles in this film. Her performances in 2010’s “Rabbit Hole” and last year’s “The Paperboy” show that Kidman isn’t afraid of daring work.
If you can’t go to the theatre this weekend, stay at home and watch movies on CW69:
Falling Up (2009) Henry’s (Joseph Cross) world changes when his dad suddenly dies, and he has to trade nursing school for a job as a New York City Doorman. Enter Scarlett (Sarah Roemer), a young woman who lives in Henry’s building, and much to the dismay of Henry’s mother (Mimi Rogers), sparks fly between Scarlett and Henry.
The Fifth Commandment (2008) Chance has been training since an early age to be an assassin. After turning down a job to kill a singer (Dania Ramirez), he now must take on a league of assassins to protect her on the mean streets of Bangkok.
Rebound (2005) Coach Roy (Martin Lawrence) is a great college basketball coach with just one problem – he can’t keep his temper in-check. After being banned from college ball, the coach gets the only job he can at Mount Vernon Junior High School. Can an old coach learn a thing or two about coaching from such young students?