Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince took the box office by storm last week and continued to break all box office records across the globe as it pushed into its second weekend. So far the film has grossed $178 million at the domestic box office. The sixth film is darker than previous outings and with two more movies yet to come in the series who knows what will happen to our favorite characters, unless of course you’ve read the books.
300 director, Zack Snyder, turns cult graphic novel, Watchmen, into a stunning adaptation. The story in set in 1985 in an alternate world where costume heroes are a part of everyday life. The effects are stunning and the performances are as equally attentive. Billy Crudup, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Goode, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan star.
Posters for Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland staring Johnny Depp as The Mad Hatter, were released last month to tease fans. Now the trailer is out and it has already received mixed reviews from purists of the classic 19th century tale from author Lewis Carroll. The film is released in 2010.
I’m happy to see Kevin Spacey back on form in the indie flick Shrink, where he plays a pot-smoking psychiatrist to Hollywood stars. Aside from the predictable bevy of alcoholic, vein, and paranoid clients that keep Henry Carter’s (Spacey) office ticking, Spacey delivers his usual sympathetic yet detached demeanor with charisma and flair.
Carter’s routine life begins to take its toll. While others around him see the doctor’s charmed life as savoir to the stars, Carter has to battle inner demons of self worth. When he is asked to take on a pro bono case of a teenage girl whose life and worries are far from the Hollywood spotlight, he begins to take stock of his own life and career.
Hoping to cash in on Gerald Butler’s new status as hansom Scottish heartthrob, The Ugly Truth stars Butler as macho TV personality, Mike Chadway, and Katherine Heigl as a morning show producer whose biggest crime to date is that she’s single. The film charts Abby Richter’s (Heigl) desperation for true love while working in the stressed out world of entertainment. The film lost me on two counts. Firstly the characters occupations sent me in a spin and bored me to tears. Entertainment writers can be so smug in believing that their own working lives are incredibly more interesting and more important than other lives and careers. If the two lead characters were written as working in a restaurant I would have pricked up my ears. And secondly, Richter is a hopeless romantic, of course, and just desperate to find the right man. Every time I see female characters like these I leave the cinema with a puzzled look on my face. Why are these women so desperate to get hitched? But I was also reminded that the jocks in these movies fair no better. These guys are always portrayed as macho, single, and as violently against marriage as their female counterparts are for it.
The ugly truth of The Ugly Truth is that this romantic comedy is a lazy paint-by-numbers tale with our two protagonists starting off disliking one another and then, well you can guess the rest. Both Butler’s charisma and Heigl’s personality are enough, however, to draw in the dating crowd and reap some success at the summer box office.