Opening in Dallas today, Friday, September 16, 2011 (listed in order of priority):
‘Amigo.’ The latest effort from stalwart indie filmmaker John Sayles is set in the Philippines in 1900, when the country was invaded by American military forces. ‘Amigo,’ which played at the most recent Asian Film Festival of Dallas, has received mixed reviews. But it’s John Sayles! And his films are always worth watching. (Texas Theatre.) Not previewed.
‘Circumstance.’ Two young women struggle with their burgeoning sexual attraction to one another while living in the repressive, potentially dangerous youth culture of modern Iran. Advance word has been very positive. (Angelika Dallas.) Not previewed.
‘Sector 7 3D.’ Creature feature from Korea in which men on an oil rig, stranded by a storm, discover they are not alone in the ocean. Looks like a heavy dose of ‘Aliens’ in the trailer. (AMC Grapevine Mills 30.) Trailer at Trailer Addict. Not previewed.
Angelika Plano: ‘Chasing Madoff,’ ‘The Guard,’ ‘Midnight in Paris.’
Landmark Magnolia: ‘The Guard,’ ‘Midnight in Paris.’
Highland Park Village Theater: ‘Sarah’s Key.’
Cinemark West Plano: ‘Higher Ground,’ ‘Sarah’s Key,’ ‘Senna.’
Opening wide across the Metroplex (listed in order of preference):
‘Drive.’ What immediately comes to mind is that ‘Drive’ is the bastard child of Walter Hill’s ‘The Driver’ and Michael Mann’s ‘Thief.’ And then director Nicolas Winding Refn unleashes a startling, violent rebel yell, and the film asserts its own twisted personality, featuring excellent performances by Ryan Gosling as the ostensible hero and Albert Brooks as the ostensible villain, with Carey Mulligan and Ron Perlman providing very good support. It’s a character study, writ in high style, with a banging soundtrack. Highly recommended.
‘Straw Dogs.‘ Rod Lurie’s remake of Sam Peckinpah’s controversial home invasion thriller may not cut as deep or leave as sour a taste as the original, but it represents a good-faith, updated examination of the masculine mind and a muscle-clenching suspense film on its own. My review at Twitch. Recommended.
‘The Lion King 3D.’ My feelings are definitely mixed. The movie remains wonderful, both a good, galvanizing story and a beautiful work of art, with excellent voice acting, especially by Jeremy Irons. But I feel that the 3D changes the intent of certain scenes, and I don’t feel it adds enough to justify the 3D surcharge. It’s in limited release for two weeks before hitting home video. My ‘Hollywood Grind’ column at Twitch. Recommended with reservations.
‘I Don’t Know How She Does It.’ Sarah Jessica Parker, evidently in a would-be comedy. Help yourself. Not previewed.