October 29, 2010 |
When 10 people who don't really know each other show up at a dinner party, it's initially difficult to tell everyone apart. That's what happens at the start of "Change of Plans," a tasty French romantic comedy diversion with just a touch of seriousness thrown into the mix. Director Daniele Thompson, who co-wrote with her actor son Christopher, soon brings order out of chaos and pulls everyone and everything into focus. By the time this lightly entertaining look at life's emotional crises ends, even the characters you didn't think were sympathetic will have won you over.
September 22, 2010 |
Human foibles, in major and minor keys, are the chords that Woody Allen has been pounding for roughly 45 years. So it should come as no surprise that in his new frothy and fitful romantic black comedy, "You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger," everyone must take a spin around the dance floor with the disillusionments, deceptions and dissatisfactions of life. Allen has put his latest morality and mortality tale in the hands of his usual complement of fine actors, who play interlocking couples each fraught in their own way. It starts with the dizzy delight of Gemma Jones as Helena, the matriarch in the meddling middle of it all. By the time we meet her, she's attempted suicide after being divorced by her wayward husband, Alfie (Anthony Hopkins)
September 3, 2010 |
Warning: This is not a reliable review of "Going the Distance. " When it comes to contemporary American romantic comedy, my brain, heart and standards have been seriously compromised by "The Ugly Truth," "Did You Hear About the Morgans?", "The Bounty Hunter" and "The Back-up Plan" and many others. Too many others. The calculated sexual raunch (mostly verbal) in "Going the Distance" impedes on its hard-edged, soft-center charm, and it may be enough to throw various audience segments straight out of the thing.
June 21, 2010
While most moviegoers cried alongside Woody and Buzz Lightyear this weekend, indie film fans in Los Angeles and New York went for the awkward charm of "Cyrus." The offbeat romantic comedy starring John C. Reilly, Marisa Tomei and Jonah Hill opened to a sensational $180,289 at four theaters in the country's two biggest cities. That's a virtual tie for the best limited-release opening of the year, alongside Roman Polanski's "The Ghost Writer." The first studio-financed picture from writers-directors Jay and Mark Duplass benefited from positive reviews and an aggressive marketing campaign and now appears well positioned as distributor Fox Searchlight expands it nationwide over the next four weeks.
June 5, 2010 |
Hoping for something swift and painless is one thing if you're the target of an assassination. It's a futile wish, though, when you're subjected to the death that is the Ashton Kutcher- Katherine Heigl vehicle "Killers." Is it some monstrosity of awfulness, as its lack of advance screening suggested? No, that would imply at least a spark of some kind. This is just an empty summer hodgepodge of stale romantic comedy exchanges, witlessness and lackluster action. It's a movie that starts in sun-kissed Nice, France, and segues to faceless American suburbs, to give you an idea of its metaphorical trajectory.
April 29, 2010 |
Though "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" has been off the air for seven years, Emma Caulfield is still pursued by fans of the sci-fi-horror series, in which she played the role of the former vengeance demon Anya. "It's crazy," says the 37-year-old actress. "The fans are very awesome. But they never really refer to me by my name — ever. I had a fan come up to me once and said they had just had a baby and named their daughter after me. I said, ‘Oh God, that's sweet. It's a good name.
April 27, 2010 |
For someone so new to Hollywood, Alex O'Loughlin is very Hollywood. "Do you mind?" he said, motioning toward his pack of cigarettes while sitting poolside at the Roosevelt Hotel earlier this week. "Or are you going to write in the interview, ‘and then he lit a Camel?'" It's not that the 33-year-old is consumed with his own image — like some industry A-listers — but that he already understands its importance. Even the outfit he was wearing, which he would show off later that evening on " Jimmy Kimmel Live," had been selected by a stylist: distressed jeans, a pair of quirky bright green boots and trendy skinny tie. It was a look far different than the one he has in his new film, "The Back-Up Plan," out Friday, in which he plays a cheese farmer — yes, really.
April 23, 2010 |
Spring break is a quickly fading memory and summer vacation still seems far away. If it feels like the doldrums at your house, movie theater owners share your despair. The year's first presumed blockbuster — Paramount Pictures' and Marvel Entertainment's "Iron Man 2" — doesn't open for two more weeks, and it's likely that none of the new movies in wide release this weekend, including the romantic comedy "The Back-Up Plan" with Jennifer Lopez, will make much of a splash, according to people who have seen pre-release audience surveys.
April 22, 2010 |
It's the season for comebacks. The L.A. Kings finally have returned to the NHL playoffs, Ford is expected to post a quarterly profit and Jennifer Lopez is back in the multiplex. For the first time in three years, the 40-year-old Lopez is anchoring a movie, and though the stakes aren't especially high — the singer-actress is starring in a $35-million romantic comedy, not some extravagant superhero franchise — there are any number of intriguing back stories behind "The Back-Up Plan," which looks to open to modest business, with a first weekend of about $11 million to $13 million predicted.
March 1, 2010
Impressive 'Percy' slays 'Wolfman' Two weeks out, the fate of the three big movies that opened over Presidents' Day weekend has changed dramatically. 20th Century Fox's "Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief" has demonstrated solid staying power and now appears likely, on a worldwide basis, to closely match the final gross of the romantic comedy "Valentine's Day," which dominated the box office in its debut. Universal Pictures' "The Wolfman," meanwhile, has quickly faded and has gone from a so-so opening to bust.