Gil Mansergh’s Cinema Toast
New Releases For the Week of 5/19/17
Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Zach Efron, Alexandra Daddario, Kelly Rohrbach. Ifenesh Hadera, Jon Bass, Priyanka Chopra
Director: Seth Gordon
The original Baywatch TV show was reportedly seen in 142 countries by over a billion people every week! In addition to the skimpy swimsuits, part of the show’s “charm” was the less-than-stellar acting by performers stuck in Scooby-Doo style plots. The reboot for the BIG SCREEN keeps alive the same campy stylings of the original, but with currently hip “BIG NAME STARS” wearing the latest cheeky swimsuit designs and making insider jokes about how what they do everyday would make a really great TV show. Then there’s the slapstick humor, and slo-mo running sequences, and jokes about how the character played by Zach Efron looks amazingly like Zach Efron. Lets admit it. Shakespeare it ain’t, but everyone seems to be having a good time.
3 pieces of not intended to be taken seriously toast
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (PG-13)
Starring: Johnny Depp, Javier Bardem, Kaya Scodelerio, Brenton Thwaites, Orland Bloom,
Director: Espen Sandberg, Joachim Ronning
For some unfathomable reason, the beloved pirate Captain Jack Sparrow’s newest vessel isn’t the title of the latest sequel. Could it be that the Dying Gull doesn’t trip off the tongue the same way the names of his earlier ships did. This time, the overly eye-shadowed one most confront Captain Salazar’s deadly ghost sailors—each and every one of which wants to rid the sea of all pirates by killing them dead, dead, dead. Jack’s only hope is to convince a brilliant (and need we say beautiful) female astronomer to aid in the quest for Poseidon’s magical Trident. Shiver me timbers! Where are the parrots when you need them?
2 and 1/2 pieces of manages to make what should be effortless, seem way too much work toast
Bang! The Bert Berns Story (R)
Starring: Stevie Van Zandt, Bert Berns, Paul McCarthy, Keith Richards, Van Morrison, Ben E. King, Cissy Huston, Ronald Isley
Director: Brett Berns, Bob Sarles
What do the classic R&B songs Twist and Shout, Brown-Eyed Girl, Here Comes the Night and Hang On Sloopy have in common? They were all written and/or produced by a guy named Bert Berns. So why, his filmmaker son asks in this documentary, don’t we know his name? The complex answer includes his father using several pseudonyms, alienating other producers (like Phil Spector), rubbing elbows with mobsters, and dying young from an inherited heart defect. But the talent he worked with, the careers he made, the music legacy he left behind, all these make this doc worth watching and hearing.
3 pieces of forget the hype about the “mob connections” in the ads toast
A Quiet Passion (R)
Starring: Cynthia Nixon, Jennifer Ehle, Keith Carradine, Duncan Duff, Emma Bell,
Directed by: Terence Davies
Most of Emily Dickinson’s poetry was hidden away, so her work wasn’t discovered until after she died. Fans who expect a Belles of Amhurst type of movie will be disappointed. British Director Terence Davis paints a portrait that goes deeper into the poet’s much-touted self seclusion after her parents literally die in her arms. There’s plenty of poems scattered throughout, and the manner in which they are presented (“I’m nobody. Who are you?”), offers nuanced understanding of Dickinson’s life and the turbulent times she lived in. Essentially, those she loves leave—one after another, until she is left to herself.
3 and 1/2 pieces of a masterfully done bio-pic toast
The Wedding Plan (R)
Starring: Nola Koler, Oz Zehavi, Jonathan Rozen, Udi Persi, Irit Sheleg
Directed by: Rama Burshstein
When an Orthodox Jewish woman living in Israel is dumped by her fiance a month before their wedding, she continues setting everything up because she believes God will provide—a groom. Billed as a comedy, it does have its comic moments, but is primarily about faith, loneliness and cultural expectations. The film follows Orthodox strictures throughout, a matchmaker sets up some likely prospects including one who uses an interpreter because he is deaf, and another who refuses to look at the woman he will marry until after the ceremony. The wedding, is planned for the eighth night of Channukah—a day of miracles, so….?
3 pieces of actress Nola Koler makes it all work toast
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