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Sucker Punch:Zack Snyder’s Kill Bill. A young woman (Emily Browning) is wrongfully imprisoned in a mental institution tries to escape by retreating into a fantasy world of Gatling gun wielding samurai and World War II era fire breathing dragons. Snyder’s previous films have been of varying quality – Dawn of the Dead (excellent, peerless remake), 300 (ludicrous fun lacking in a sense of humor), Watchmen (captured the letter but not the spirit of the graphic novel), Legends of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’ Hoole (talking owl movie) – but this sensuously crafted fetish piece is intriguing. Punch is the first film written and directed by Snyder and it’s obviously a passion project. But as opposed to Mel Gibson’s Passion, Snyder’s holy texts include 70’s bad girl prison flicks and 80’s Frank Miller. It’s possible that this film will be a kaleidoscopic failure but it’s going to be a personal, ambitious failure and those are always more interesting than mediocre success. Also starring Jena Malone, Vanessa Hudgens and Abbie Cornish.
Fun Fact: “White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane and “Pour Some Sugar on Me” will be featured in musical sequences in the film.
Dairy of a Wimpy Kid: Roderick Rules: Jenny Kinney’s young adult sorta graphic novel series gets its second chapter adapted to film. The first DoaWK was visual imaginative, vaguely 90’s Nickelodeon kiddie patter and its sequel threatens the same. In this adventure, the titular wimpy kid (Zachary Gordon) has to deal with his parents attempts to strengthen the bond between himself and his brother Roderick (Devon Bostick). Sure fire inoffensive entertainment. Also starring Rachel Harris, Steve Zahn and Robert Capron.
Fun Fact: The first Diary of a Wimpy Kid film made $165 million against a $15 million budget.
If neither of this week’s major releases do anything for you check out the current offerings from Cedar Lee Theatre. For comedy fans, you can check out The Hangover’s Ed Helms in Cedar Rapids, a darkly funny indie from The Good Girl director Miguel Arteta. It follows Helms as a Ned Flanders-ish insurance salesman who falls in with a wild crowd at insurance convention held in the title city. For action fans, check out Kill the Irishman, a bleak take on the life and times of infamous Clevelander Danny Greene (Ray Stevenson). The film has received mixed reviews but any chance to see Christopher Walken and Val Kilmer playing vicious gangsters is not to be missed.
Mario blogs regularly at A Polemic Killer Room.