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Cinema Scoop

Your weekend guide at the movies

Greetings movie lovers, it's time to take a look at what the cinema has to offer us this weekend.

     Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters

In this spin on the fairy tale, Hansel & Gretel are now bounty hunters who track and kill witches all over the world. As the fabled Blood Moon approaches, the siblings encounter a new form of evil that might hold a secret to their past.

     My Take

I'm sure you are familiar with the classic Brothers Grimm fairy tale about Hansel & Gretel wandering into a gingerbread house where they are snatched by a witch who wants to eat them, but before she can the siblings outsmart her and push her into an oven. This film expands on the story by imagining what happened to the siblings when they grew up.

I've got to be perfectly upfront about what I thought when I first saw the trailer for this film. I thought it looked utterly ridiculous. Once again we're getting another mind numbing, video game style action fantasy that looks similar to other craptastic films like Van Helsing, Red Riding Hood and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. The only difference is that this film is Rated R and promises copious amounts of blood-spatter and gore amongst its special effects laden nonsense. Whoopee!

Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton star as the siblings turned bounty hunters and Famke Janssen is the evil witch that they have to contend with.

This film is the American debut of Norwegian director Tommy Wirkola, who made the campy horror comedy Dead Snow about Nazi zombies (yup, you heard that right). Based on what I've seen of Hansel & Gretel, it is sure to have its fair share of camp in it as well amidst all of the carnage.

I am sure that there will be an audience out there who enjoys the sight of exploding witches in 3D, but I can assure you that I won't be amongst them. It will likely be a theatre full of young males who spend far too much time playing video games.

I highly doubt that Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters has any chance of being a film that is worth seeing.

     Movie 43

A series of interconnected short films follows three kids as they search the depths of the Internet to find the most banned movie in the world.

     My Take

This outrageous new gross-out comedy is brought to us from the twisted minds of producers Peter Farrelly (Shallow Hall, Hall Pass) and Charles Wessler (There's Something About Mary, Dumb & Dumber) and it features one of the largest ensemble casts ever assembled in film including Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Kate Winslet, Emma Stone, Richard Gere, Gerard Butler, Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber, just to name a few. Seriously, look the cast up, it's ridiculous how many people are in this thing.

The film features 12 different storylines, each one done by a different director including the likes of Brett Ratner, Peter Farrelly, Elizabeth Banks, Griffin Dunne and Bob Odenkirk.

The big question remains, with all of this talent involved in Movie 43 if it will actually be any good at all. I would suggest that if you want to get an idea of the style of humour that you'd be seeing, to google the uncensored red band trailer for the film and give that a look. This movie is clearly going to be a rude, crude, gross-out flick that will likely attempt to offend as many people as possible.

It was shot in 2010 but for some reason it's been sitting on the shelf until now. Why the delay? This is usually not a good sign regarding the film's quality, and I'd like to wager that many of the big name stars that appear in this film would probably like to forget about it and pretend it doesn't exist.

The success of Movie 43 could go either way - it could be a smash hit propelled by all of its big star power or it could completely bomb because of how horribly awful it might be. Either way, this definitely won't be for everyone due to its content. It's Rated R for strong pervasive crude and sexual content including dialogue, graphic nudity, language, some violence and drug use.

     Parker

A thief with a unique code of professional ethics is double-crossed by his crew and left for dead. Assuming a new disguise and forming an unlikely alliance with a woman on the inside, he looks to hijack the score of the crew's latest heist.

     My Take

Parker once again finds star Jason Statham in his comfort zone, doing what he does best, being the action hero. I like Statham and think he is well suited to these types of roles, but I fear that this film will be just another generic action thriller with nothing overly original being brought to the table.

It also stars Jennifer Lopez, Michael Chiklis and Nick Nolte and it's directed by longtime filmmaker Taylor Hackford (An Officer and a Gentleman, The Devil's Advocate, Ray).

This week has some pretty slim pickings at the theater so if you are an action movie fan then this will likely do the trick for you.

Also landing in town this week at the Paramount Theatre is the new drama by director Gus Van Sant (Good Will Hunting, Finding Forrester, Milk) called Promised Land. It stars Matt Damon as a corporate salesman named Steve Butler who travels to a rural town with his sales partner, Sue Thomason (Frances McDormand). With the town having been hit hard by the economic decline of recent years, the two outsiders see the local citizens as likely to accept their company's offer, for drilling rights to their properties, as much-needed relief. What seems like an easy job for the duo becomes complicated by the objection of a respected schoolteacher (Hal Holbrook) with support from a grassroots campaign led by another man (John Krasinski) who counters Steve both personally and professionally.

With a strong cast and good director, Promised Land could be a decent drama about "fracking" which might be interesting to some. It has received luke warm response from film critics though, only garnering a 50% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Whichever film you choose to see this weekend, have fun at the movies.



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