CARRIE -(Odeon/SilverCity/Empire Uni 4/Westshore) Stephen King’s horror classic gets a remake at the hands of Kimberly Pierce (Boys Don’t Cry). Chloe Grace Moretz plays the shy high school outcast, while Julianne Moore is her religiously obsessed mom.
ESCAPE PLAN -(SilverCity/Westshore) Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger team up in a brutal actioneer about two convicts who will do anything to break out of the world’s most secure prison.
FIFTH ESTATE -(Odeon/SilverCity) Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Julian Assange, the megalomaniac maestro behind WikiLeaks, in a much-anticipated drama that has been widely praised for superb performances and an even-handed look at a morally complicated topic.
★★½ LEE DANIELS’ THE BUTLER -(Caprice) Forest Whitaker heads up an amazing cast in a true story about a black butler at the White House whose long tenure there overlapped with the long struggle of the American civil rights movement. Costarring Alan Rickman, John Cusack, Lenny Kravitz, and Oprah Winfrey. Although a bit ponderous and unimaginative, this is still a fine history lesson.
★★½ THE WORLD’S END -(Roxy, 7:00) In a disappointing but occasionally funny follow-up from the makers of Shaun of the Dead, five old friends reunite for a pub crawl only to find themselves in a droll sci-fi action-adventure of epic proportions. Starring Simon Pegg.
★★★★ BLUE JASMINE -(Caprice) Cate Blanchett is headed for an Oscar nomination for her role as an emotionally fragile woman struggling to recover after her life as a glamorous socialite implodes. Complete with a great cast, this is one of Woody Allen’s best films. Ever.
★★★★ CAPTAIN PHILLIPS -(Odeon/SilverCity/Empire Uni 4/Westshore) Talented director Paul Greengrass (Bourne Supremacy) tells the true tale of a ship captain (Tom Hanks) whose boat is captured by Somali pirates. Tense but also thoughtful, this is a thriller with a brain. See review in the monthly Monday Magazine.
CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2 -(SilverCity/Westshore/Empire Uni 4) The wacky animated comedy about an infamous machine that churns out scary food-animal hybrids was popular enough to merit a sequel. Consider yourself warned! With the vocal talents of Bill Hader, Anna Faris, and Will Forte.
★★½ DESPICABLE ME 2 -(Caprice) The 2010 original, about a loathsome criminal mastermind who was reformed by the love of three young orphan girls, was a goofy delight. The sequel, although still clever, is much more scattershot, with an unimaginative plot and unwelcome dashes of mean spiritedness. Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, and Russell Brand supply the voices.
★★½ ELYSIUM -(Caprice) Matt Damon and Jodie Foster star in a futuristic sci-fi thriller where the Earth has become a polluted ghetto and the lucky few get to live in luxury on a floating space station orbiting languidly above. Well, that’s about to change. It’s hard to argue with the politics, but this new film by the writer-director of District 9 is too heavy-handed and cliched to take seriously.
★★★½ ENOUGH SAID -(Odeon) The latest from delightfully quirky writer-director Nicole Holofcener (Please Give, Friends With Money) features a divorced woman who sets her sights on a man – only to learn that he is the much-loathed ex-husband of her new gal pal. This sweet, clever, sexy, and insightful sort-of romantic comedy stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Catherine Keener and, sigh, the late James Gandolfini.
★★★½ GRAVITY -(Odeon/SilverCity/Empire Uni 4/Westshore) Sandra Bullock and George Clooney star in a harrowing, brilliantlyexecuted thriller about two astronauts aboard a space station who survive an accident only to find themselves drifting helplessly through space, with little hope of rescue or survival.
MACHETE KILLS -(SilverCity) The irrepressible Robert Rodriguez (Sin City, Grindhouse) churns out a lurid, jokily-violent sequel to his drive-in-style splatterfest about a machete-swinging dude (Danny Trejo) with a gory taste for vengeance. Co-starring Mel Gibson, Michelle Rodriguez, Lady Gaga, and Antonio Banderas.
THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS: CITY OF BONES -(Caprice) Only the bones were left after the critics universally savaged this derivative, overwrought tale of a young woman who discovers that she has unusual powers as she gets drawn into a battle involving a band of angel-like creatures struggling to quash a demonic threat to the entire world.
★★★½ PRISONERS -(Westshore) Quebec director Denis Villeneuve (Incendies) has been getting great praise for this bleak and violent police procedural about two kidnapped girls and the dad who will do anything to get them back. The superb cast includes Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, Viola Davis, Terrence Howard, and Melissa Leo.
THE RIGHT KIND OF WRONG -(Odeon/SilverCity/Westshore) In this romantic comedy a dishwasher falls in love with a bride on the day of her wedding. Too bad she’s marrying another dude.
★★½ ROMEO & JULIET -(SilverCity) Shakespeare’s immortal romantic tragedy returns to the silver screen in lush period detail, this time in an adaptation by novelist Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey). Despite its authentic setting, this is a mostly dull affair, marred especially by the lack of romantic chemistry between the two leads.
RUNNER RUNNER -(Westshore) A smart college student with a knack for gambling (Justin Timberlake) hooks up with a sinister offshore entrepreneur (Ben Affleck) who runs an online poker empire from a corrupt Caribbean island. This has become one of the worst-reviewed movies of the year.
★★★★ RUSH -(Odeon/SilverCity) Gifted mainstream director Ron Howard (Apollo 13) delivers high-octane thrills and lots of human drama as he tackles this biopic about the legendary 1970s rivalry between Formula 1 race car drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda.
TURBO -(Caprice) The latest from Dreamworks Animation is a family comedy about an ordinary garden snail who acquires magic powers – and the chance to achieve his dream of winning the Indy 500. With the voices of Ryan Reynolds, Paul Giamatti, Maya Rudolph, and Samuel L. Jackson.
★★★★ WATERMARK -(Odeon) The newest collaboration between documentary filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal and renowned photographer Edward Burtynsky (Manufactured Landscapes) is a profound and engaging meditation on our complex relationship with water – and especially how our use of technology is affecting the world’s water supplies.
★★½ WE’RE THE MILLERS -(Caprice) Jason Sudeikis and Jennifer Aniston star in a crass comedy about a long-time pot dealer who hires a stripper and two feral teens to pretend to be his middle class family as cover for when he smuggles a massive load of weed across the border from Mexico to the States. Intermittently quite funny, this is a case of talented performers struggling with a second-rate script.
★★★ WOLVERINE -(Roxy, 8:55) Hairy-faced and Adamantium-clawed Hugh Jackman travels to Japan to confront the diabolical Silver Samurai, in an entertaining Marvel Comics smackdown that combines X-men flair with martial arts and yakuza elements.
MOVIE MONDAY – is screening Mars Project, a unique look at the challenges of schizophrenia. This film features the strange journey of Canadian rap icon Khari “Conspiracy” Stewart, whose musical output is a dark catalogue of his experiences with the demons in his mind and his struggles with the Canadian medical system (whose drug-based treatments he long-since rejected in favour of his own spiritual approach to dealing with his illness). 6:30 pm Monday in the 1900-block Fort. By donation. 595-FLIC. moviemonday.ca.
Cinecenta at UVic screens its films in the Student Union Building. Info: 721-8365.
★★★★ BLUE JASMINE -(Fri.-Sat., Oct. 18-19: 3:00, 7:00, 9:00; Sun., Oct. 20: 3:00, 7:00; Mon., Oct. 21: 7:00 only) Cate Blanchett is headed for an Oscar nomination for her role as an emotionally fragile woman struggling to recover after her life as a glamorous socialite implodes. Complete with a great cast, this is one of Woody Allen’s best films. Ever.
★★★½ THE THING -(Fri.-Sat., Oct. 18-19: 11:00 pm only) John Carpenter was in brilliant form in this terrifying 1982 remake of the sci-fi classic about a remote Arctic research lab that gets invaded by a shape-shifting horror from outer space.
PLANES -(Sat.-Sun., Oct. 19-20: 1:00 matinee) The same people who made Cars have taken to the skies with a similar family-friendly animated tale about a crop-dusting plane with dreams of winning a famous aerial race.
★★★★ JAWS -(Tues., Oct. 22: 7:00, 9:20) Steven Spielberg’s brilliantly-told tale about a monster shark terrorizing a group of vacationers is one of the greatest thrillers ever filmed.
★★★½ FRUITVALE STATION -(Wed.-Thurs., Oct. 23-24: 7:15, 9:00) This truth-based reenactment of the turbulent last day of a young black man in 2008 is understated and heartbreaking.
THE VIC THEATRE
COMPUTER CHESS -(Fri.-Mon., Oct. 18-21: 7:00) Chess buffs should savour this comedy, set in the 1980s, that features a man-versus-machine chess tournament.
OUR NIXON -(Tues.-Thurs., Oct. 22-24: 7:00) It’s our turn to snoop on President Richard Nixon, via this documentary comprising never-before-seen Super-8 home-movie footage shot by Nixon’s closes aides – you know, those guys convicted as Watergate co-conspirators. Featuring Henry Kissinger, H.R Haldeman, and John Erlichman.