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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:
“Star Trek Into Darkness” (2013)
Captain Kirk (Chris Prine), Spock (Zachary Quinto) and the rest of the Enterprise crew are sent on a mission to go behind enemy lines. Will Kirk risk his ship and crew to stop a man (Benedict Cumberbatch) that is hell-bent on death and destruction? Star Trek Into Darkness WebsiteWhat to Watch For: The studio has done just about everything to try and keep what character Cumberbatch is playing under wraps. Could it be the infamous Khan?
Word on the Street: The special effects are said to be amazing. The big question is how big will opening weekend at the box office be?
My Take: I really enjoyed the first “Star Trek” (2009) film, and can’t wait to see what director J.J. Abrams has in store for us.
“At Any Price” (2013)
Henry Whipple (Dennis Quaid) owns one of the area’s largest farms, along with also being the region’s number one seed salesman. But Henry’s son, Dean (Zac Efron) doesn’t want to follow in his father’s footsteps and continue working in the family business. He wants to be a NASCAR driver and is just about willing to do anything to make it happen. At Any Price Website
What to Watch For: The director, Ramin Bahrani, is known for making award winning “Indie” type films such as “Man Push Cart” (2005) and “Chop Shop” (2007). The question is, can he make a more mainstream film?
Word on the Street: While the film is filled with stars such as Quaid, Efron and Heather Graham, the breakout star of this film just might be Maika Monroe, who plays Efron’s on-screen girlfriend.
My Take: I applaud Efron for taking chances on films such as “The Paperboy” (2012) and “Me and Orson Welles” (2008). With roles that are very different from his stints in the “High School Musical” series.
“The Reluctant Fundamentalist” (2013)
Changez (Riz Ahmed) is a young Muslim Pakistani man who moves to New York to work in the world of high finance. Changez’s life is going well with a successful job, beautiful girlfriend (Kate Hudson), until 9/11 happens and the World Trade Center comes crashing down. Changez is called back to his home country. Now, he may have to choose between the country, that he loves, America, and his homeland. The Reluctant Fundamentalist IMDB Page
What to Watch For: The director, Mira Nair, has made that successful transition from making films in her native India to Hollywood films such as “Vanity Fair” (2004) and “Amelia” (2009).
Word on the Street: The film is doing well in some foreign markets, such as the UK and India, it will be interesting to see how well it does in America.
My Take: I have been a fan of Riz Ahmed ever since I saw him in the 2010 comedy “Four Lions.”
Explorer, Thor Heyerdal’s sets out to prove that South Americans in pre-Columbian times settled Polynesia by doing what many in 1947 thought impossible – set out on a balsa raft from Peru and cross the Pacific, all 4,300 miles. Kon-Tiki Website
What to Watch For: The film is based on the award winning book and Academy Award winning documentary of the same name.
Word on the Street: The film was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film of the Year at this year’s Oscars.
My Take: As a kid I loved both the book and the documentary, so I am really looking forward to seeing this film.
If you can’t go to the theatre this weekend, stay at home and watch movies on CW69.
“Open Season” (2006) Boog (Martin Lawrence) is a 900 pound Grizzly bear with a bit of a problem – he’s never been out in the wild. Boog was raised by a park ranger and was the star of the town of Timberline’s nature show. But now he is stuck in the middle of the woods with the one-antlered deer, Elliot (Ashton Kutcher), after rescuing Elliot from a hunter. Now, the unlikely pair must survive the opening of hunting season.
“Alvin and the Chipmunks 2: The Squeakquel” (2009) Dave (Jason Lee) and the boys, Alvin (Justin Long), Simon (Mathew Gray Gubler), and Theodore (Jesse McCartney) are back as they deal with school, their singing career and a new rival for the airwaves, an all-girl group named “The Chipettes” (Amy Poehler, Anna Faris, Christina Applegate).
“Daddy Day Care” (2003) Eddie Murphy stars in this comedy about two fathers, who, after losing their jobs, have to take their kids out of a pricey day care. That’s when the dads decide that they can run one in their own home.