In Theaters This Weekend: February 17, 2012

We've made it to another weekend here at the Slackers Selection Movie Blog. Hopefully very few of you had to deal with being drug by your girlfriend to "The Vow" this past weekend. If you did, I sympathize. Maybe you can talk her into something you actually want to see this weekend - though the crop here isn't much better than the last.

In my opinion, "Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance" is your best option this weekend. I do say that cautiously though. If you don't know what you're going into this can easily end up being a disappointment. If you listened to our podcast this past week (if not, you can find it here) then you heard what kind of movie this is and how it should be approached. Just in case, I'll paraphrase: it's an over-the-top action movie. And Nicolas Cage is a crazy actor. But when given the right medium, he can really make for a good time. This movie isn't trying to be serious. It's trying to find the most ridiculous action it can and jam-pack it all into an hour and a half movie for your entertainment. Don't try to over-analyze and nitpick this movie. It's going to be cheesy and ridiculous. But it's accepting that and embracing it. Think back to when you saw "Drive Angry". What were your thoughts on that movie? I enjoyed it. It was so off-the-wall and absurd (and they knew it) that I didn't expect too much. I just sat back and watched the mayhem. And in my opinion, that's exactly what you need to do with this movie as well.

Now that being said, I have not seen this movie yet, and there is such a thing as bad absurdity, so there still is a chance this could suck - it's getting a 10% on Rotten Tomatoes right now. Not that that's the final word in movie ratings, but it does say something. But if you go in with the right mindset I genuinely think that you can have a good time with this one.

Another movie that's releasing this weekend that I don't think will disappoint is "The Secret World of Arrietty". Now, I'm not a big animation fan, and I'm not planning on rushing out to the theater for this one anytime soon, but I still believe that it will be entertaining. If you have kids or younger siblings, this could be a perfectly enjoyable film for all. The animation looks clean and refreshing, and the story looks good as well. It's killing on Rotten Tomatoes right now, as I expected it would. If you're looking for a safe choice this weekend, this is your film.

And then that leaves "This Means War". Personally, I'm disgusted when I see previews for this film. If for no other reason than that there are three very good actors in this film doing silly, waste-of-time work with a script that looks to be as cookie-cutter as they come. I'm bored with this movie just from the trailers. Chris Pine and Reese Witherspoon have done very respectable work in recent memory and you'd think they're high-profile enough to pick and choose what they do. I can't for the life of me figure out why this would be one they'd pick. As for Tom Hardy, he really has come on within the past year or so, so I could understand him signing onto this one early and just being stuck in it. Funny enough though, he's probably the best actor out of the three at this point and from here on out, should have a much better selection of movies. As for the director, any actual artist that wants to go by "McG" I refuse to ever take seriously. He will always be a joke to me until he grows up and gets a real name. If you're drug to this one, there may be some good action, and at least you'll be watching competent people on screen. Basically we're talking "Safe House" all over again, this time just with a love story. Don't expect this to be anything fresh.

So that's what's on the docket this weekend. I'm not overly impressed with any of the releases, and if I was going to the theater this weekend, I think I'd choose from something other than these three.