• Bridesmaids (****). At last, a big summer comedy that’s actually funny from beginning to end. Kristen Wiig is an aimless klutz put in charge of planning the bridal shower and wedding of her lifelong best friend Maya Rudolph. It’s basically a set up for Wiig and crew to be funny and it completely works. At the same time, there’s a genuinely sweet core of female bonding at its center that provides a nice framework for the abundant laughs and provides an emotional satisfaction at the end. Wiig is terrific, but Melissa McCarthy steals the show as a blunt and off-kilter bridesmaid. (Review) (Wide)
  • Hesher (****). Four lost souls have their lives shaken up for better and for worse by the sudden appearance of Hesher, a destructive, unpredictable, heavy metal force of nature. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is fantastic as the title character and Natalie Portman is excellent as an awkward, flaky grocery store clerk who is having a bad couple of years with one shitty thing happening after another. Hesher is not a complete success, but it gets a lot right. The best part is that it treats grieving and loss in a way most movies don’t care to explore. It taps into not just the sadness, but also the rage. (Review) (Limited)
  • Everything Must Go (*** 1/2). Will Ferrell shows his dramatic side as a recovering alcoholic who loses his job, his wife and his home all on the same day. He just needs a little time to get his bearings and figure out what to do next, but he has nowhere to go and no one to whom he can turn. Everything Must Go doesn’t have the same stark power as the Raymond Carver short story upon which it is based (Why Don’t You Dance), but it’s a moving and effective story on its own. Will Ferrell gives a nicely dialed back performance that allows the natural humor to come through when it’s appropriate. Rebecca Hall, Laura Dern and Stephen Root co-star. (Review) (Limited)

  • Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff. Martin Scorsese, Thelma Schoonmaker, Lauren Bacall, Kirk Douglas and others talk about the man behind the camera on such films as The Red Shoes and The African Queen.  (NY. LA 6/3)
  • Hey Boo: Harper Lee & To Kill a Mockingbird. Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning first and last novel is 50 years old this year. Here’s the official blurb from First Run: “Hey, Boo explores the To Kill a Mockingbird phenomenon and unravels some of the mysteries surrounding Harper Lee, including why she never published again. It also brings to light the context and history of the novel’s Deep South setting and the social changes it inspired after publication. Anna Quindlen, Tom Brokaw, Wally Lamb, Richard Russo, Oprah Winfrey, Andrew Young and others reflect on the novel’s power, influence, and popularity, and the many ways it has shaped their lives.”
  • City of Life and Death. Lu Chuan dramatizes the six weeks of rape and mass murder of the citizens of Nanking following the city’s capture by the Japanese during the Sino-Japanese War in 1937. I loves me some historical comedy! (NY Wed 5/11. LA 6/17)
  • A Serbian Film. I can’t recall another movie recently that has stirred up as much controversy as this one so I kind of feel like I have to see it. Here’s the official blurb: “Milos, a retired porn star, leads a normal family life with his wife Maria and six-year old son Petar in tumultuous Serbia, trying to make ends meet. A sudden call from his former colleague Layla will change everything. Aware of his financial problems, Layla introduces Milos to Vukmir – a mysterious, menacing and politically powerful figure in the pornographic business. A leading role in Vukmir’s production will provide financial support to Milos and his family for the rest of their lives. A contract insists on his absolute unawareness of a script they will shoot. From then on, Milos is drawn into a maelstrom of unbelievable cruelty and mayhem devised by his employer, ‘the director’ of his destiny. Vukmir and his cohorts will stop at nothing to complete his vision. In order to escape the living cinematic hell he’s put into, and save his family’s life, Milos will have to sacrifice everything – his pride, his morality, his sanity, and maybe even his own life.” It doesn’t sound like much, but festival reviewers were suitably horrified, even the ones who ultimately liked the movie. It’s getting a small theatrical release this weekend in an NC-17 version, or you can apparently stream the unrated version at FlixFling for $5.
  • Priest. Warrior priest Paul Bettany vs. vampires in a crazy post-apocalyptic alternate world beset by undead bloodsuckers. Karl Urban, Cam Gigandet, Maggie Q, Lily Collins, Brad Dourif and Christopher Plummer co-star.   (Wide)
  • The Big Bang. A private dick, a missing girlfriend, 30 million in diamonds, a porn producer and a reclusive billionaire. Sounds like a recipe for neo-noir. Antonio Banderas, James Van Der Beek, Snoop Dogg, Sam Elliot and Delroy Lindo star. (Limited)
  • The Bleeding House. A family is forced to confront its dark past when a stranger shows up looking for revenge.  (Limited)
  • Brother’s Justice. Actor/comedian Dax Shepard decides he wants to become a martial arts star despite not having any training or the means to make his planned blockbuster. All we can do is sit back and wonder why. Looks like some kind of mockumentary. Tom Arnold, Bradley Cooper and David Koechner appear. (Limited)
  • The High Cost of Living. Zach Braff plays a drug dealer who flees the scene of a traffic accident that causes a woman to miscarry. As if Scrubs wasn’t crime enough for one lifetime.
  • Skateland. Teens growing up in  the early ’80s in a small east Texas town. Ashley Greene and Shiloh Fernandez star. (Limited)
  • True Legend. Famed fight choreographer Yuen Woo Ping (The Matrix, Kill Bill) directs what sounds like a good old fashioned martial arts revenge picture. Good vs. evil! The Five Venom Fists vs. the Drunken Fist! With Vincent Zhao, Andy On, Michelle Yeoh, David Carradine and Jay Chou(Limited)
  • How to Live Forever. After the death of his mother, filmmaker Mark Wexler sets out to find out how to live forever. Jack LaLanne, Ray Kurzweil, Ray Bradbury, Phyllis Diller, Willard Scott, Suzanne Somers and others are interviewed. Suzanne Somers? Really? Also, didn’t Jack LaLanne die? (NY)
  • L’Amour Fou. Fashion king Yves Saint Laurent gets documentarified. (NY)
  • The Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls. The true story of New Zealanders Lynda and Jools Topp, the world’s only pair of all comic, all singing, all yodeling, all lesbian twin sisters. (NY)

6 Responses to “Weekend Forecast: Always a bridesmaid…”

  1. I’m hoping to get out this weekend to see Incendies. It sounded really interesting to me and I’ve heard nothing but good things about it. And I know it comes LiC recommended.

    I have to say, I’m very pleasantly surprised at your reaction to Bridesmaids. From the commercials it really looked like it was going to be dismal.

    Also, yes, Jack LaLanne did die. But do you know what his wife’s name is?

  2. Elaine LaLanne!

    I hated the trailers for Bridesmaids, so the movie was a nice surprise. If you’re in the mood for a few laughs, I’d definitely recommend checking it out.

    As for Incendies, yes it’s highly recommend but I never finished my review of it or even updated the blurb on the Now Playing page. Sad but true. Maybe I”ll fix that this weekend.

  3. Now that I’ve seen Incendies I have to say it really deserves nothing less than a full write-up by you.

  4. Consider me inspired. I take it you liked it?

  5. It was fantastic.

  6. I am pleased

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