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Movie Reviews

A raunchy alien makes men out of two nerds

Graeme (Simon Pegg: The Chronicles of Narnia) and Clive (Nick Frost: Pirate Radio) are two nerds living the dream. The Brits combine their savings for a trip of a lifetime to California’s Comic Con. Spending money on essentials — a Gorn mask and signed copies of Jeffrey Shadowchild’s (Jeffrey Tambor) latest sci-fi tome — the pair is looking forward to an RV trip to see the great American sights.

A hilarious western cartoon spoof sure to haunt the dreams of young children

Rango (voiced by Johnny Depp: The Tourist) is a chameleon with an identity crisis. Kept in captivity, he makes himself the hero of elaborate plays, using a Barbie torso, a windup fish and a dead bug as a supporting cast.

Do you love the 1980s? Then skip this movie.

Poor Matt Franklin (Topher Grace: Predators) is having a bummer of a year. After graduating from MIT, Matt decides to forgo a career working for the corporate machine. Instead, he works at the mall’s Suncoast Video — which is a corporation, but don’t tell Matt — and makes plans for his future.

Fast cars, naked women and explosions add up to a surprisingly dull ride

Drive Angry 3D After winning the best actor Oscar for Leaving Las Vegas, Nicolas Cage decided to become an action star. For 14 years, Cage has made a career out of kicking ass and taking names. Yet the actor never seems comfortable playing the badass. His oddly nuanced voice and pregnant pauses come off as uncertainty instead of a quirky character trait.

An excellent cast struggles to elevate a spy thriller that thinks it’s smarter than it is

Dr. Martin Harris (Liam Neeson: The Next Three Days) is having a bad day. After realizing that he’s left his briefcase, containing vital information for a bio-medical conference he’s speaking in, at the Berlin Airport, he leaves his wife (January Jones: Mad Men) at their hotel to retrieve the case. One cab crash and concussion later, Martin wakes from a four-day coma and returns to his wife and the conference.

Two hitmen make mincemeat out of the company that betrayed them in this highly entertaining shoot-em-up

In a South American cartel compound, a wealthy drug jeffe dives into the blackened waters of his swimming pool. As his guards carelessly look away, he is caught by a scuba-geared assailant and drowned. Changing from scuba gear to a kitchen uniform, the assassin slips past the dozens of armed guards, who stare bewilderedly at their expired leader.     It’s ridiculous, yes, but it’s also pretty damn entertaining.

An economic downturn upends three corporate Americans in this redemptive recession drama

In the wake of 2010’s unyielding recession and the threat of a takeover, conglomerate GTX decides to secure the company’s bottom line by laying off thousands of workers. GTX doesn’t see people. It sees falling profits and nervous investors. By trimming non-essential jobs, the CEOs can keep their private jets, $500 lunches and mahogany-trimmed offices while also fending off corporate raiders.

A few Hail Marys might have saved this horror movie

Michael Kovak (Colin O’Donoghue: The Tudors) doesn’t want to join the family funeral business. To escape this morbid life, Kovak joins a seminary, hoping for a free education. As far as the drawbacks — the whole celibacy thing, the fact that he doesn’t believe in God — Kovak figures he’ll just quit before he makes his vows.

A fun action flick with a buzzkill for a lead

In Seth Rogen’s (Funny People) latest leading role, which he wrote for himself, he creates a superhero with all the personality faults of Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man but without any of the charm or competence. It’s a bold choice to craft a possible superhero franchise around a tiresome jerk, but Rogen relishes the challenge. 

Come for a love story, stay for an emotional evisceration

Blue Valentine isn’t a romantic drama; it’s a horror movie for romantics. Derek Cianfrance’s (Cagefighter) film asks questions that most modern romantic movies attempt to avoid: What happens to a married couple when they fall out of love? What if you’re not meant to be with the person you married? The answers to these questions are often painful, messy and uncomfortable.