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Gil Mansergh’s Cinema Toast

New Releases for 4/12/13


42 (PG-13)

Starring: Chadwick Boseman, Harrison Ford, Alan Tudyk, Christopher Meloni, Hamish Linklater, Lucas Black

Directed By:  Brian Helgeland

There are probably a couple of younger generations unaware of the significance of a baseball jersey with the number “42” on its back, but this film should help close that cultural void. For that was the number a New York Dodgers rookie named Jackie Robinson began wearing a couple years after WWII. The first African-American in major league baseball quickly proved his worth. His 12 home runs that first season helped the Dodgers win the National League pennant,  and the Rookie of the Year award for Robinson. The film depicts racism and it’s atavistic anger front and center—the individuals, teams, cities, and entire states which refused to  allow a “colored man” to play with or against them was legion, and several of the roles, most notably Chadwick Boseman as Robinson, Harrison Ford as Dodgers manager Branch Rickey, and Lucas Black as the team’s shortstop Pee Wee Reese, are truly memorable.

3 pieces of that’s the way it was toast

 

Trance (R)

Starring: James McAvoy, Rosario Dawson, Vincent Cassell

Directed By:  Danny Boyle

When an auctioneer gets hit on the head during an art heist, he loses any  memory of where he put a $25 million painting. The gang tries threats and torture to overcome the amnesia, and when that fails, a hypnotist is recruited to help jog the little grey cells. For some unfathomable reason, actor James MacAvoy doesn’t react to these contradictory techniques with any obvious difference. This is the film’s fatal flaw, resulting in a movie about a guy we really don’t connect with—no matter how clever the script or camera-work.

2  pieces of lacks empathy toast.

 

Scary Movie V (PG-13)

Starring: Ashley Tisdale, Simon Rex, Charlie Sheen, Lindsey Lohan

Directed By: Malcolm D. Lee

The former “girl you love to hate” from Disney’s High School Musical franchise has made a career move to become a screaming horror movie spoof star in this film. Other than that, there’s little I know about the movie.

Not made available to critics

 

NEW DVD RELEASES

Hyde Park on Hudson (R)

Starring: Bill Murray, Laura Linney, Samuel West, Olivia Coleman

Directed By: Roger Michell

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s affair with his distant cousin, Daisy, adds the spice to a choreographed for the press meeting at Roosevelt’s New York estate with the British king and queen before the U.S. entered WW2. Some critics whine that Bill Murray is more like himself than FDR, but I doubt any of them actually knew FDR. I enjoyed Hyde Park on Hudson as a farce with serious international consequences, and Murray is perfect for that type of film. My only real problem is how Eleanor Roosevelt is portrayed. She was a much gutsier woman than we see onscreen. (But what do I know—I never met her).

3 pieces of Bill Murray toast

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