Preview This! “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2”

Opening this week at a theatre near you.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

Photo courtesy of Lionsgate

“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2”  (2015)

Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) is heading for a showdown with President Snow (Donald Sutherland). Katniss goes on one last mission and is determined to bring down Snow or die trying. “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2” Website

What to Watch For:   The film was shot in Atlanta, GA, Paris, France and Berlin, Germany.

Word on the Street:  The film will be released in 2D and IMAX in the United States.

My Take:  I am interested to see how the untimely death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman is handled.  He had a week of filming remaining when he died.

The film opens at a number of Atlanta area theatres on Friday.

The Night Before

Photo courtesy of Columbia Pictures

“The Night Before”  (2015)

Ethan (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), Isaac (Seth Rogan) and Chris (Anthony Mackie) have a tradition of going out on Christmas Eve.  Because Isaac is going to be a father and Chris has become famous, the guys decide to have one more night of adventure before their lives become too busy. “The Night Before” Facebook Page

What to Watch For: The film reunites Seth Rogen and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.  They previously worked together on “50/50.”

Word on the Street:  The film was shot on location in New York City.

My Take:  The film was written and directed by Jonathan Levine who directed two of my favorite films, “50/50” and “Warm Bodies.”

The film opens at a number of Atlanta area theatres on Friday.

Secret in Their Eyes

Photo courtesy of STX Entertainment

“Secret in Their Eyes”  (2015)

Ray (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and Jess (Julia Roberts) are two FBI investigators whose lives are changed when Jess’s teenage daughter is found brutally murdered.  Thirteen years later, Ray thinks he has found the murderer and needs the help of a former flame, Claire (Nicole Kidman). “Secret in Their Eyes” Website

What to Watch For:  The film is based on the 2009 Academy Award winning Best Foreign Language picture from Argentina of the same name.

Word on the Street:  Julia Roberts role was re-written by screenwriter Billy Ray so that Roberts could be in the film.  Initially, the role was for a male actor.

My Take:  I loved the original film and thought it was one of the best of that year.

The film opens at a number of Atlanta area theatres on Friday.

Brooklyn

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight

“Brooklyn”  (2015)

Eilis Lacey (Saoirse Ronan) leaves her sister (Fiona Glascott) and mother (Jane Brennan) behind in Ireland to go work in Brooklyn, NY in the early 1950’s.  She finds a job and a boyfriend (Emory Cohen), which makes her life seemingly full. But Ireland is calling, and she may have to choose between her new life in the US and her old life in Ireland. “Brooklyn” Website

What to Watch For:  The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and became part of a bidding war between the studios.

Word on the Street:  Many film critics feel that Saoirse Ronan could be nominated for an Academy Award.

My Take:  The film shot a number of scenes in Ireland, a country I have always wanted to visit.

The film opens Friday at AMC Phipps Plaza 14 and Landmark Midtown Art Cinema.

By the Sea

Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

“By the Sea”  (2015)

In the mid-1970’s, Vanessa (Angelina Jolie-Pitt) and Roland (Brad Pitt) are traveling around France. Their marriage is not working until they visit a quiet, seaside town and meet the town’s inhabitants. “By the Sea” Website

What to Watch For:  The film was written and directed by Angelina Jolie-Pitt and was produced by and stars Jolie and her husband, Brad Pitt.

Word on the Street:  The film is reportedly the last feature film of Angelina Jolie’s acting career.

My Take:  The film has one of my favorite actresses in it, Mélanie Laurent.

The film opens at a number of Atlanta area theatres on Friday.

Man Up

Photo courtesy of Saban Films

“Man Up”  (2015)

Nancy (Lake Bell) is tired of being set up on dates by her friends.   On her way across London, she meets Ben (Simon Pegg) who mistakes her for his blind date. Nancy decides just to go with it, and this chance meeting changes both their lives. “Man Up” Facebook Page

What to Watch For: Lake Bell stayed in character even when she was not on camera.  The crew didn’t know she wasn’t English until she thanked them at the end of the shoot.

Word on the Street:  The film was shot on location in London.

My Take:  I always love watching Lake Bell on-screen.

The film opens Friday at the AMC Colonial 18 .

Tab Hunter Confidential

Photo courtesy of The Film Collective

“Tab Hunter: Confidential”  (2015)

This documentary centers on one of the biggest stars of the 1950’s, Tab Hunter.  Hunter, the object of desire for millions of women, had a secret:  he was gay. “Tab Hunter: Confidential” Website

What to Watch For:  Hunter’s long-term relationships with actor Anthony Perkins and champion figure skater Ronnie Robertson are explored in the film.

Word on the Street:  The film played to a packed house at the Out on Film Festival in October.

My Take:  The film has been winning awards at a number of LGBT film festivals.

The film opens Friday at  Landmark Midtown Art Cinema.

 

If you can’t make it to the theatre this weekend, then stay at home and watch movies on Atlanta’s CW.

Sunday

1:00 pm

“The Code”  (2009)  A veteran thief (Morgan Freeman) picks a younger crook (Antonio Banderas) to help do one final job to pay back the Russian Mob.

3:00 pm

“Short Circuit 2”  (1988)   Robot Johnny Five (voiced by Tim Blaney) is sent to the city to help Ben (Fisher Stevens) with his electronics business.  But some bad guys want to use Johnny Five for their own purposes.

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