Robin Hood: Will he rob you of $10? A weekend movie guide
Robin Hood: Anything to Crowe about?
You've got 10 bucks and two hours, and you don't want to waste any of it. We can help. Here's our guide to the best and worst movies this weekend.
MAYBE: Robin Hood Instead of robbing from the rich to give to the poor, this Robin Hood (Russell Crowe) preaches about "liberty" and the rights of Englishpersons bled dry by government greed. Stumbling across King Richard's corpse and the king's dying sidekick, Robert Loxley, Robin agrees to take the Loxley family sword back to papa Walter (Max Von Sydow) and Robert's headstrong widow, Marian (Cate Blanchett), in Nottingham, as a war with the French looms. (area theaters) City Pages: "An old-fashioned adventure epic weighed down by overly simplistic, quasi-populist dialogue, it plays like a rousing love letter to the Tea Party movement. Robin Hood seeks to wow through assault: The soundtrack is loud, the pace is relentless, the battle scenes choreographed for total sensory disorientation." Star Tribune: 3.5 stars Pioneer Press: 3 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 45% positive
SEE: Please Give Kate (Catherine Keener) and Alex (Oliver Platt) stock their "vintage furniture" store with mid-20th-century pieces bought cheap from the distracted children of the recently dead. Now the couple has bought the apartment next door and is only waiting for its 91-year-old inhabitant (Ann Guilbert) to kick off, but they must also deal with the woman's two grown grandchildren, dutiful Rebecca (Rebecca Hall) and selfish Mary (Amanda Peet). (Uptown Theatre) City Pages: "Nicole Holofcener's fourth feature is, for the most part, witty and engrossing." Star Tribune: 3 stars Pioneer Press: 3.5 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 84% positive
MAYBE: The Good, the Bad, the Weird Reviews are all over the map for the latest from popular Korean director Kim Ji-woon, in which three men--a ducktailed assassin, a rustic goofball, and an exquisitely complexioned dude--scramble for treasure in 1930s wartime Manchuria. (Lagoon Cinema) City Pages: "A travesty of Sergio Leone's control of space, pacing, and storytelling." Star Tribune: 4 stars Pioneer Press: 1.5 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 85% positive
FLEE: Harry Brown Michael Caine is the titular pensioner who gets involved in a Prime Suspect-style murder mystery. When a good friend is killed, he turns Harry Brown into Dirty Harry and starts blowing away half the no-good youth of today. City Pages: "Director Daniel Barber's lame hand-wringing about youthful alienation forms a thin veneer over the real purpose of this rubbish--to hold us hostage to his spurious depravity." (Lagoon Cinema) Star Tribune: 3 stars Pioneer Press: 2 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 71% positive
FLEE: Just Wright A romantic comedy (for the ladies) with basketball and cameoing NBA players (for the fellas). (area theaters) City Pages: "Another movie, not as awful as this one, might one day find better use for the easygoing vibe between Queen Latifah and Common. That absolutely no chemistry exists between them is the first of many flaws." Star Tribune: 1.5 stars Pioneer Press: 2.5 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 42% positive
FLEE: Letters to Juliet A young fact-checker Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) engaged to a hunky restaurateur has ambitions to be a writer. On an Italian vacation, she meets an English widow (Vanessa Redgrave) and joins her to search for a lost love, only to find a love interest of her own in the widow's grandson, who takes far more interest in her writing than her fiancé. (area theaters) City Pages: "Juliet's core messages--date boys who are cool with you having a career and don't settle. Gary Winick's flat direction does the material no favors." Star Tribune: 1 star Pioneer Press: 2.5 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 38% positive
Next page: Screenings, art house, and ongoing films
Groundhog Day: Does this look familiar?
SEE: Groundhog Day Self-important TV weatherman Phil Connors gets his comeuppance when he finds himself living the same obnoxious day over and over. Eventually Phil moves past the youthful high jinks and suicide attempts to get to know his inner sentimentalist. Beyond the amusing camerawork and editing, Groundhog Day does make you think about time--how much you have and what you might choose to do with it .(Trylon Microcinema, Friday and Saturday at 7 and 9 p.m.) SEE: Kelly Reichardt: Off the Beaten Track The Walker's retrospective of the director's films ends tonight with Old Joy (Friday at 7:30 p.m.), a beautiful, fragile film about two old friends who take one final camping trip together; and Wendy and Lucy (Friday at 9 p.m.) a modest but cosmic movie whose sad pixie heroine, Wendy (Michelle Williams, in a sensationally nuanced performance), already skating on thin ice, slides into America's lower economic depths. (Walker Art Center)
In the sequel, Iron Man loses a contact lens
SEE: Exit Through the Gift Shop Not just the definitive portrait of street-art counterculture but a hilarious expose on the gullibility of the masses who embrace manufactured creative personas. (Lagoon Cinema)
SEE: Kick-Ass Tired of being mugged by high school thugs, the teen hero of Kick-Ass decides to become a real-life superhero, and he learns the hard way that trying to intimidate thieves while wearing a ridiculous green wetsuit will get you a beat down. But through a turn of events and secret help from real crime fighters, his antics turn him into an internet phenomenon. (area theaters)
SEE: The Secret in Their Eyes A hilarious comedy from Argentine director Juan Jose Campanella about a retired court investigator who wants to write a book about a murder case he once worked, which leads him to visits his foxy former superior with whom he once nearly had an affair. An Oscar-winning ending. (Edina Cinema)
MAYBE: Babies Babies follows four international infants from birth to toddling. Cutting from rural Mongolia to Tokyo and from the Namibian desert to San Francisco, director Thomas Balmes shows them as they nurse, sleep, poop, eat, crawl, and play. (area theaters)
MAYBE: Iron Man 2 Robert Downey Jr. returns as billionaire Tony Stark, now out of the closet as the superhero Iron Man. His nemesis this time is Ivan Vanko (Mickey Rourke), a rogue Russian physicist whose lifelong grudge against the Stark family inspires him to weld together his own knockoff suit. There's techie lifestyle porn, hot cars, hot guns, and three dozen comic books' worth of exposition girdled into two straining hours. (area theaters)
MAYBE: Mid-August Lunch An aging Italian slacker cares for his demanding mother in their decrepit Rome apartment. Forced to take in several other matriarchs to win a reprieve on his overdue rent, he finds himself caring for four spunky old dames. (Edina Cinema)
MAYBE: A Nightmare on Elm Street Freddy Krueger returns in a remake of Wes Craven's 1980s horror classic.
For more film ideas, capsule reviews, and showtimes, click here.
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