Opening this week at a theatre near you:

The Judge

Photo courtesy of Warner Brothers

“The Judge”  (2014)

A hot shot defense attorney, Hank Palmer (Robert Downey Jr.), returns to his hometown where his father (Robert Duvall) is suspected of murder.  Now Hank must reconnect with his father (who he hasn’t talked to in years) and find out the truth of what happened. “The Judge” Website

What to Watch For:  Besides Downey and Duvall, Billy Bob Thornton and Vera Farmiga make up the cast.

Word on the Street:  Apparently, the language in the film is a little strong, hence the R rating.

My Take:  Nice to see Mr. Downey Jr. in a suit that is made of something not metal.

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Picturees

“Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day”  (2014)

Alexander (Ed Oxenbould) is not having a very good day, which started out with him getting gum in his hair.  He’s not alone as it seems his whole family is having a very bad day, too. “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” Website

What to Watch For:  Steve Carell and Jennifer Garner play the parents of Alexander.  The film is based on  the bestseller by Judith Viorst.

Word on the Street:  The soundtrack is said to contain songs by The Vamps, Kerris and Justine Dorsey, The Narwhals and Charles William.

My Take: I have become a fan of actress Bella Thorne, who plays Alexander’s older brother’s girlfriend in the film.

Men, Women & Children

Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures

“Men, Women & Children”  (2014)

A group of high school students and their parents try to navigate life in a world where the Internet has become a major part of our lives. “Men, Women and Children” Website

What to Watch For: Many fans hope that writer/director Jason Reitman will return to form with this film after the disappointing “Labor Day” (2013) and “Young Adult” (2011).

Word on the Street:  Critics who have seen this film are pointing to the preformances of Ansel Elgort and Kailyn Dever, playing teenagers dealing with major problems.

My Take:  One of my favorite actresses, Emma Thompson, is the narrator of this film.

Addicted

Photo courtesy of Lionsgate

“Addicted” (2014)

Zoe (Sharon Leal) has it all:  a successful business, a wonderful husband (Boris Kodjoe), and two beautiful kids.  Then she meets Corey (Tyson Beckford) and finds herself giving into one temptation after another. “Addicted” Website

What to Watch For:  The film is based on the best-selling novel by Zane.

Word on the Street:  “The Vampire Diaries” Kat Graham is said to give one of the better performances in the film.

My Take:  It is interesting how far Tyson Beckford has come in his acting career.

Dracula Untold

Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

“Dracula Untold” (2014)

With his kingdom and his family being threatened, Vlad Tepes (Luke Evans) decides to deal with the supernatural and make a deal with the dark world. “Dracula Untold” Website

What to Watch For:  This is a new tale for Dracula which gets away from its Bram Stoker novel roots.

Word on the Street:  Universal is hoping to create a horror universe, much like Marvel’s Super Hero Universe.

My Take: Will Dracula show up in any of the other Universal monster pictures?

Photo courtesy of Focus Features

Photo courtesy of Focus Features

“Kill the Messenger”  (2014)

Gary Webb (Jeremy Renner) uncovers the story of a lifetime.  The CIA used money from drug smuggling to fund the Contras in Nicaragua.  Once the story is published, it changes Gary’s life and not for the best. “Kill the Messenger” Website

What to Watch For:  The director of the film, Michael Cuesta, worked on the first couple of seasons of the cable hit, “Homeland.”

Word on the Street:  Many critics are saying that Renner could get an Academy Award nomination for this film.

My Take: The storyline reminds me of the 1976 Academy Award winning film “All the President’s Men.”

Pride

Photo courtesy of CBS Films

“Pride”  (2014)

Set in 1984, a group of gay and lesbians decide to show solidarity against Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher by supporting the striking miners in Wales.  After raising money for the strikers, the group decides to visit one of the mining towns and meet them face to face.  The small Welsh town of Onliwyn will never be the same again. “Pride” Website

What to Watch for: The film is based on a true story, and many of the characters in the film are based on real people.

Word on the street: Dominic West is said to steal the movie as the flamboyant owner of the bookstore where the group meets.

My Take:  I am looking forward to seeing Ben Schnetzer in the role of activist Mark Ashton.  Schnetzer was so exceptional in last year’s “The Book Thief.”

The Two Faces of January

Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures

“The Two Faces of January”  (2014)

A husband  and wife (Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst) are traveling in Greece when they meet a friendly tour guide named, Rydal (Oscar Isaac), who offers to show them the sites. Before he knows it, Rydal is caught up in a deadly game of cat and mouse. “The Two Faces of January” Website

What to Watch For:  Portions of the film were shot on location in Greece and Turkey.

Word on the Street:  The film premiered in February 2014 in the Berlinale Special Galas section of the 64th Berlin International Film Festival and received very favorable reviews.

My Take:  Both Kirsten Dunst and Oscar Isaac have been taking some interesting roles lately.

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby

Photo courtesy of The Weinstein Company

“The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby (Her/Him)” (2014)

Connor (James McAcoy) and Eleanor (Jessica Chastain) are a couple going through a tough time as they try to survive living in New York. “The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby” Website

What to Watch For:  These are two films; “Him” is from the perspective of Connor, and “Her” is from the prospective of Eleanor.

Word on the Street:  Jessica Chastain is quickly being talked about for a Best Actress nomination for this film.

My Take:  I have been looking forward to this film for quite a while when I heard about the concept back in early 2012.

If you can’t’ make it to the movie theatre this weekend, then stay at home and watch films on ATLCW.

Sunday

1:00 pm

“La Bamba”  (1987) Lou Diamond Phillips plays Ritchie Valens who rises up from the migrant farms of California to become a teenage rock star, only to lose his life in a legendary plane crash.

5:00 pm

“Predators”  (2010)  A group of elite warriors (Adrien Brody, Laurence Fishburne, Topher Grace) are hunted by members of a vicious alien race known as Predators.

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