Sex and the City 2: See it or flee it?
Sex and the City 2
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.
FLEE: Sex and the City 2 The four aging BFFs struggle on with work-life challenges (Miranda), child-care dilemmas (Charlotte), cougar body-maintenance (Samantha), and marital boredom (Carrie). And like all of us, they decide to do it wearing high fashion on a blowout vacation to Abu Dhabi. (area theaters) City Pages: "SATC2 runs a crushing 146 minutes of not very funny gag lines wrapped in episodic mini-scenes that generate more embarrassment than sympathy." Star Tribune: 1.5 stars Pioneer Press: 2 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 15% positive
FLEE: Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time A noble prince (Jake Gyllenhaal) tries to clear his name after he's fingered for his father's assassination, a mission aided by a feisty princess (Clash of the Titans beauty Gemma Arterton) and a magic knife. (area theaters) City Pages: "The story hinges on a dagger that can rewind time, a narrative conceit that doubles as a taunt to those who endure this cacophonous, frivolous adaptation of a video game series. It's merely a cash-my-paycheck-dammit film, embodied by a disinterested Sir Ben Kingsley." Star Tribune: 1.5 stars Pioneer Press: 2 stars RottenTomatoes.com: 41% positive
FLEE: Survival of the Dead The sixth installment in George A. Romero's long-running horror serial (est. 1967) follows Sarge Crockett (Alan Van Sprang) as he leads his gone-rogue unit of National Guardsmen from the zombie-pestilent mainland to "Plum Island, Delaware." There, the returned departed are feuded over by two family-armies. City Pages: " Silly CGI violence and familiar preoccupations with the family-as-hell, creeping Catholicism, and stock rednecks. The inevitable all-you-can-eat orgy of zombies pulling stringy mouthfuls away from red, wet rib cages may satisfy gorehounds, but it's depressing to anyone who has valued this series for more than just splatter." Star Tribune: 1.5 stars Pioneer Press: 1.5 stars
Next pages: Screenings, art house, and ongoing films
Full Metal Jacket
SEE: Full Metal Jacket This isn't so much a "Vietnam movie" as it is a Stanley Kubrick movie, which means it finds an otherwise unexplored pocket of rage and thrashes around there with surreal gusto. The first half is a sparse, tough, and highly compressed diary of Marine boot camp. The second half amounts to an extended, incredibly tense finale in the bombed city of Hue during the Tet Offensive, as the main character, Stars and Stripes reporter Private Joker (Matthew Modine), finds himself on patrol instead of sugarcoating the war through his newspaper stories. Kubrick wants to show a whole culture losing its brains, a genuine mass nightmare--and he succeeds. (Willow Creek 12, Friday and Saturday at midnight; Saturday and Sunday at 10:30 a.m.)
MAYBE: Caddyshack Bill Murray steals the movie as a demented golf course groundskeeper obsessed with killing a gopher, while around him a young caddy tries to figure out his life goals and wealthy club members head toward a showdown over turning the course into a real estate development. (Trylon Microcinema, Friday and Saturday at 7 and 9 p.m.) MAYBE: The Hagstone Demon A former reporter is now an alcoholic manager of an apartment building (Mark Borchardt) haunted by evil spirits. When tenants begin to die, the manager must determine whether the killings are the work of an alluring homeless prostitute who lives in his building or something more supernatural. (Trylon Microcinema, Friday at 11:30 p.m.)
Next page: ongoing films
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: Mother and Child A compassionate, multi-threaded tale about the lives of three everyday women (Annette Bening, Naomi Watts, and Kerry Washington) involved, in one way or another, with adoption. Bening, in particular, is exceptional. (Edina Cinema)
SEE: Please Give In this witty and engrossing comedy, Kate (Catherine Keener) and Alex (Oliver Platt) stock their "vintage furniture" store with pieces bought 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 (Rebecca Hall and Amanda Peet). (Uptown Theatre)
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: MacGruber MacGruber (Will Forte), a highly decorated soldier of fortune, is called out of an early retirement to fight his arch enemy, Dieter Von Cunth (Val Kilmer), and prevent a nuclear disaster, in this feature-length film inspired by the Saturday Night Live skit. (area theaters)
MAYBE: Shrek Forever After In this fourth and final installment in the Shrek franchise, our green hero feels emasculated by the grind of domesticity. He utters a wish for just one day to cavort in his old life of swampy bachelorhood--a wish that is magically granted. The actors--Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy, Cameron Diaz, Antonio Banderas--are in fine form, but this Shrek never rises to the inspired heights of the original (area theaters)
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. This old-fashioned adventure epic plays like a rousing love letter to the Tea Party movement. It wows the audience through assault: The soundtrack is loud, the pace is relentless, the battle scenes choreographed for total sensory disorientation. (area theaters)
For more film ideas, capsule reviews, and showtimes, click here.
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