Thursday, March 15, 2012

In Theaters This Weekend: March 16, 2012





In theaters this weekend, we'll all see the release of one big studio production, and a few of us will come across the chance at two smaller-marketed films, only releasing in a couple hundred theaters across the country.

But the overall quality seems good for the weekend. And I'm happy with this appetizer slate of films leading into movies such as "The Hunger Games" and "Wrath of the Titans", both releasing over the next couple of weeks.

So if the posters aren't giving it away already...check after the break to see what films we're looking at for the weekend, and how hyped we should be getting for them, if at all.


The first film worth noting this weekend is the widely-promoted remake/film-adaptation, "21 Jump Street". As most of you probably know, the title of this film was originally a Johnny Depp television series that hit the airwaves back in 1987.


This version stars Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill as a pair of young cops who go undercover and back to high school to infiltrate a drug ring. It seems silly, I know, but don't be worried. Whether you've seen the trailers or not, I can assure you that they're well aware of the content here, and from all I've seen and heard, they're making sure to have a good time with it.


When I first heard word of this film, I was very indifferent towards it. I don't care much for Tatum's acting abilities, and up until his turn in "Moneyball", I wasn't a huge fan of Hill either. The cast didn't impress me, and I was unfamiliar enough with the original source material that I didn't have any nostalgic ties to the story line. But as we've got closer and closer to its release, I have to say I'm starting to get pretty interested. I'll be the first to admit that I'm not usually a big comedy-genre movie fan to begin with - and especially not for theater visits - but not only has this film done everything right with its trailers and promotion, it's also releasing at a perfect time. We're at a point right now where people are getting fed up with the cold weather outside and unimpressive movies continuing to release inside. This movie answers our cry and provides us exactly with what we need right now - something fun and silly; something where we can just go into the theater, sit back and relax, recognize our stars, and get in some good laughs. I can't put my finger on an exact reason why, but for whatever it is, I'm definitely going to go to this movie this weekend. It just flat-out looks like a lot of fun.


Other than that, there are two other films getting much more limited releases. Normally I don't talk much about these types of movies, but since there's nothing else getting a wide-release this weekend, and both of these feature notable actors, I figured I'd include them. The first is "Jeff Who Lives at Home". It stars Jason Segel and Ed Helms as a pair of brothers both going down very different life paths. It's made by the Duplass Brothers, who also recently directed "Cyrus", which I enjoyed. This looks like another very sound independent drama/comedy, and I can't imagine why I wouldn't enjoy this one too. But that being said, even though I don't think it will be releasing here anway, if it were, I don't think this would be a theater visit for me. I think there will be value in this film, but does it beg you to see it on the big screen? Not really.


The third film releasing this weekend is Will Ferrell's "Casa de mi Padre". Honestly, I'm kind of over the Will Ferrell thing. I think he's a funny actor with a great wit and sense of comedic timing, but just as is the case with most comedians, eventually they wear themselves too thin, and we get bored with seeing the same things over and over again. Granted, this film is completely in Spanish, so it technically is different than what he's done in the past, but regardless, this one isn't for me. I don't have any problems reading subtitles in films, but usually when I'm doing so, it's for a great script and film that really makes it worth the time and inconvenience of not being able to fully take in the visuals. With comedy, so much is in the expressions, that I can't imagine taking time to sit through this film. Plus the fact that Rotten Tomatoes already has it below 40% isn't helping one bit. Maybe someday I'll find myself sitting in front of it, but for all intents and purposes, this one will be a pass for me.


So that's what we're looking at this weekend. "21 Jump Street" should be good fun, and a film that everyone should check out this weekend if you get the chance. The other two films mentioned above probably aren't releasing around you anyway, but if they are, if you get the urge and/or the time, check them out, but otherwise, I don't think it would be the end of the world waiting for the DVD (or, maybe I should be saying BluRay? Is that standard yet, or am I still current sticking to 'DVD'?).