Gil Mansergh’s Cinema Toast
New Releases for 5/03/13
The Angels Share is whiskey sharp, Iron Man 3 wins box office
Iron Man 3 (PG-13)
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Guy Pearce, Ben Kingsley, Scarlett Johansson, Colbie Smulders, Paul Bettany, Sam Elliott
Directed By: Shane Black
Imagine if an Old West gunslinger could stop the fight a a second past high noon, and ask his assistant to bring him a cannon. That’s the sensibility of Iron Man 3, supposedly last of the Robert Downey Jr. Iron Man films. Tony Stark’s latest suit of armor isn’t the Swiss Army Knife it used to be, but instead is a series of interchangeable suits clamped on like accessories on a Kitchenaid mixer. Paltrow keeps proving she is intelligent a well as beautiful, and Downey is still spot on with his one-liners, but the latest version of Tony Stark is less resilient, more neurotic and often depressed. In addition, the inclusion of a juvenile sidekick (presumably to appeal to a younger demographic) comes out of left field, the aforementioned multiple suits of armor lead to too many armor-donning sequences, and the bodies stack up like cords of firewood. Still, IM3 has already wowed audiences worldwide, and as a kick off for the summer blockbusters, it’s pretty good.
3 pieces of it’s got the “most beautiful woman in the world” in it toast
The Angels Share (NR)
Starring: Paul Brannigan, John Henshaw, Siobhan Reilly
Directed By: Ken Loach
A young Scottish ne’er-do-well decides to do the right thing and visit his girfriend and their newborn at the hospital, and gets beaten up by the girl’s gangster dad. Recuperating in court-ordered community service, he is invited by his supervisor to learn to appreciate Scotland’s finest single malts. This leads to insider information about an upcoming auction of an ancient whiskey worth hundreds of thousands of pounds. A heist is planned, and the fun begins.
3 pieces of distilled Scottish toast
Starring: Stellen Skasgard, Andrea Riseborough, Colin Ford, Frank Grillo, Hope Davis, Jason Bateman
Directed By: Alex Rubin
A classic tale of despair and loss of identity is told in the modern-day mileu of smart phones, chat rooms and cam-sex. The concept shines in some sequences, but the script becomes to obvious and the question of “who are the grown ups?’ is answered in a morally dishonest and unsatisfying manner.
2 and 1/2 pieces of smart phones, dull people toast
To the Wonder (R)
Starring: Ben Affleck, Olga Kurylenko, Rachel acAdams, Javier Bardem
Directed By: Terence Malik
Dreamlike in many respects, the director has made a film in a series of short takes that looks like it’s selling expensive perfumes or automobiles. In our dreams, we know (or at least pretend to know) who we are, and don’t question shifting suddenly from a Parisian street setting to a dry and dusty Oaklahma landscape. But when as Malik tries to share his own dreams or visions, he makes a mistake by trying to get us interested in a self-absorbed couple with more beauty than sense. Perhaps he thought audiences would just absorb his wonderful images. But if so, why does he include the sequences with Javier Bardem as a priest with a flock of alcoholics and street people? Bardem makes Affleck’s moo-cow expressions seem absurdly amateuristic, and makes this critic wish the film had primarily been focused on the priest and his group of real human beings instead.
1 and 1/2 pieces of watch it for Bardem toast
NEW DVD RELEASES
Broken City (R)
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Barry Pepper, Kyle Chandler, Jeffrey Wright
Directed By: Allen Hughes
The director who did Book of Eli knows what to do, and the actors are all first rate, so why this film about political corruption and dirty cops is so listless defies logic. The plot twists are revealed before they happen, the actors try hard in different scenes but never click as a team, the photography is muddy, and the characters talk on and on and on…ZZZZZ.
1 and 1/2 pieces of at least Russell Crowe doesn’t sing in this movie toast
The Guilt Trip (PG-13)
Starring: Barbra Steisand, Seth Rogan, Kathy Najimy, Colin Hanks
Directed By: Anne Fletcher
An insufferably nagging mother is trapped in an 8-day cross country car trip with her grown son. The result is supposed to be a comedy, but instead, it’s a cliched road trip movie with all the predictable plot points including the car breaking down.
1 and 1/2 pieces of mehh toast