Preview This! “Neighbors”

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Mike has a degree in Film from The University of Texas at Austin. He...
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Mike Mike 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:

Neighbors

Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

“Neighbors”  (2014)

A young, newly married couple (Seth Rogen, Rose Byrne) live in an ideal, quiet neighborhood. That is until the fraternity, led by Teddy Sanders (Zac Efron), moves into the house next door. After trying various ways to get the frat to quiet down, the young couple decide to wage war on the frat next door. “Neighbors” Website

What to Watch For:  This is Zac Efron’s first R rated comedy, so it will be interesting to see how his fans react.

Word on the Street:   Critics who have seen early screenings of this film are raving about Rose Byrne’s comedic talents.

My Take:  I am hoping that director Nicholas Stoller gives us a film as funny as his first directorial effort, “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” (2008)

Mom's Night Out

Photo courtesy of Tri-Star Pictures

“Moms’ Night Out”  (2014)

Allyson (Sarah Drew) and her gal-pals just want one night out, where they can dress up and get away from their husbands and kids.  That means that the men will be in charge of the kids.  What could go wrong? “moms’ Night Out” Website

What to Watch For:  You will know Sarah Drew from her long-running stint as Dr. April Kepner on the ABC show “Grey’s Anatomy.”

Word on the Street:  Unlike a lot of recent adult comedies, this film is one that most of the family can see as it has a PG rating.

My Take:  I am interested to see how Trace Adkins does in this movie as a biker who helps the ladies find one of their missing children.

Locke

Photo courtesy of A24

“Locke”  (2013)

On the eve of the biggest night in his construction career, Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy) gets a phone call that will change his life.  Now he must make a huge decision –  to drive home to his wife and kids or to drive to London to deal with this new problem. “Locke” Website

What to Watch For:  After the first minute of the film, Tom Hardy is the only person on the screen, though he does talk to a number of people during the film, over the phone, while driving his car.  The film was shot using a multiple of mounted cameras, both inside and outside the car as Hardy drove at night to London on the highway.

Word on the Street: Fans who know Hardy only through films as “Warrior” (2011), “This Means War” (2012) or “The Dark Knight Rises” (2013), are going to be surprised with his restrained, quiet performance in this film.

My Take: The film was shot in two weeks using some new camera techniques.  This film was my favorite film that I saw at the Atlanta Film Festival this year.

Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return

Courtesy of Clarius Entertainment

“Legends of OZ: Dorothy’s Return” (2014)

Dorothy ( Lea Michele) makes a return visit to Oz, this time to save the Scarecrow (Dan Aykroyd), the Lion (James Belushi) and the Tin Man (Kelsey Grammer) from the evil Jester (Martin Short). “Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return” Website

What to Watch For:  The voice cast in this animated film also includes Bernadette Peters, Oliver Platt, Hugh Dancy and Patrick Stewart.

Word on the Street:  Eight original songs were written for this animated musical.

My Take:  I am looking forward to hearing Megan Hilty as the China Princess.  Hilty played Glinda in the Broadway musical, “Wicked,” is based on the same material.

Belle

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures

“Belle”  (2013)

Based on the life of historical figure Dido Elizabeth Belle, “Belle” tells the story of the mixed–race daughter (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) of a British Naval officer and an African woman. Raised by her aristocratic great-uncle, Lord Mansfield (Tom Wilkinson)  and his wife(Emily Watson), Belle’s lineage affords her certain privileges, yet the color of her skin prevents her from fully participating in the traditions of her social standing. Left to wonder if she will ever find love, Dido meets John Davinier (Sam Reid), a young lawyer and apprentice of Lord Mansfield. John and Dido’s meeting is the beginning of a love story that catapults Dido onto a path of self-discovery. “Belle” Website

What to Watch For:  The film has been very well received on the Film Festival circuit, including the 2014 Atlanta Film Festival.

Word on the Street:  Many critics who have seen this film feel that lead actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw could get an Academy Award nomination from her portrayal of Belle.

My Take:  This film was one of the highlights of my experience at the Atlanta Film Festival

Fading Gigolo

Photo courtesy of Millennium Entertainment

“Fading Gigolo”  (2014)

Murray (Woody Allen) is always in need of some money.  He comes up with an idea that Fioravante (John Turturro) can become a gigolo, and Murry can be his pimp.  This seems to be going well until Fioravante falls in love with one of his customers. “Fading Gigolo” Website

What to Watch For:  This is the fifth film directed by the talented Turturro.

Word on the Street:  Many who have seen this film in preview screenings are calling this Allen’s best acting performance in years.

My Take:   My feeling is any film with Allen, Turturro, Liev  Schreiber, Sharon Stone and Sofia Vergara can’t be dull.

If you can’t come to the theatre this weekend, stay at home and watch movies on CW69.Saturday.

3:00 pm

“So I Married an Axe Murderer” (1993) Charlie (Mike Myers) is a poet who doesn’t have the best track record with women. But, when he meets Harriet (Nancy Travis), he thinks he has finally met the woman of his dreams…that is until events start happening that make him doubt Harriet’s motives.

Sunday

1:00 pm

“So I Married an Axe Murderer” (1993) Charlie (Mike Myers) is a poet who doesn’t have the best track record with women. But, when he meets Harriet (Nancy Travis), he thinks he has finally met the woman of his dreams…that is until events start happening that make him doubt Harriet’s motives.

3:00 pm

“Mrs. Doubtfire”   (1993)  Daniel (Robin Williams) is a small time actor who is bitterly divorced from Miranda (Sally Field).  To spend time with his kids, Daniel puts on an elaborate disguise and creates the ultimate nanny, Mrs. Doubtfire

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