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Arts and Entertainment

Weekend Movie Guide: Go see Cloverfield

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photo courtesy of paramount pictures

I'm shocked at the middling critical response that Cloverfield has generated. Sure, it's only a popcorn movie, but it's a perfect popcorn movie! Plenty of movies are described as a roller-coaster ride, but when Cloverfield finally ends you physically feel like you just got off a roller-coaster. I can't imagine a scenario where Cloverfield is not a huge box-office hit. I also can't imagine there not being a huge backlash any day now. Flame away!

Earlier this week, LAist posted the first 5 minutes of the terrifying Teeth. Starting today, you can head to the theater and see the full, er, monty (or lack thereof). If I ever a movie called out to be made by an Italian director during the gory 1970s, then Teeth is it. Sadly, American filmmakers tend to shy away from showing dangling appendages being shorn off and the bloody, spurting stumps that remain.

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photo courtesy of the weinstein company

As much as I love everything from Bananas to Bullets over Broadway, I think it's time for Woody Allen to stop with the comedies. Scoop, Melinda and Melinda and Hollywood Ending were all awful. Thankfully, the Woodman can still deliver a good punch of a drama and Cassandra's Dream is his latest. Sure, it probably has echoes of Crimes and Misdemeanors in it (there seem to be in all of Woody's recent dramas), but the cast is stellar.

I've always liked James Marsden as an actor and I've heard good things about his performance in 27 Dresses. I don't think I'll be able to verify those rumors, however, since there's no chance I'll be seeing this movie. I've established firm criteria for what romantic comedies I see: they must either be R-rated or they must star Mandy Moore. 27 Dresses fails on both counts.

I've always been fascinated by the casting of certain movies. I just can't imagine anyone saying, "You know what we need? Queen Latifah, Diane Keaton and Katie Holmes. There's no way it could fail!" Mad Money is the result of all that putative brainstorming. What's happened to Diane Keaton? Is she ever allowed to not be frenetic in a movie anymore? She's the Steve Martin of female actors now: a legend who's become a clown.

Taxi to the Dark Side is the latest excellent movie about the American military misadventures of the past few years that no one will watch. I'm not sure why distributors continue to introduce films about either terrorism or Iraq into the marketplace. Don't misunderstand me--I'm glad they do because I enjoy watching them. I'm just stunned that they seem content to continue losing money.

Tickets & Showtimes

Cloverfield
Teeth
Cassandra's Dream
27 Dresses
Mad Money
Taxi to the Dark Side

Reviews

Cloverfield
Teeth
Cassandra's Dream
27 Dresses
Mad Money
Taxi to the Dark Side

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Previews

Cloverfield

Teeth

Cassandra's Dream

27 Dresses

Mad Money

Taxi to the Dark Side