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Secretariat

Can you tell that football season is here again? The only films that the studios are dropping into the theaters are early Oscar bait (The Social Network), family flicks (this week’s Secretariat), and horror crap (last week’s Case 39 and this week’s My Soul to Take). Basically, they figure if you are a dude above the age of say, 21 years old, you’re going to be with your buddies watching the game. What do those suits know? I’m going on record right now and predicting an 80% male turnout for Life as We Know It this weekend. Bank on it! Let’s review this week’s releases. Life marches by, Chels. I suggest you get on with it.

Secretariat – I’ll admit, the first thing I wonder when I see the advertising for this film is who will get fired at Disney for greenlighting it? It’s a period piece based on the true story of the 1973 Triple Crown winner, so it had to cost a nice chunk of change to produce, even if you do save some money by hiring talented character actors instead of superstars to act in it. Then you have the fact that Diane Lane and John Malkovich are starring in a PG Disney family film, which boggles the mind. Honestly, it’s right up there with Harvey Keitel starring in Monkey Trouble. But, the closer it has gotten to release, the more people I have heard say that they are actually looking forward to seeing this. It may not have a huge opening weekend, but this is the type of movie that will play to the crowd that goes to watch a film the third or fourth weekend it has been out in release.

Life as We Know It – I don’t know if there is anyone working in Hollywood right now that I dislike more than Katherine Heigl. I mean, sure there are some that I may not totally agree with their politics or personal views on certain things, but I don’t think I have ever seen anyone come out of the gate as fast as she has seemingly determined to burn every bridge professionally. “Yeah, Seth Rogen and Judd Apatow, all that stuff I said about how great it was to work with you on Knocked Up? Now that I’m making The Ugly Truth, I can see how sexist KU was. That’s cool though, it’s not like Apatow has any pull in Hollywood. Also, thanks to the cast and crew for falling for my alienating way on the set of Grey’s Anatomy. I know you worked with me to give me time to do movies while also working on the show, but when you are getting A+ material like Killers, well, I have been called the Meg Ryan of this generation, y’know?” Here’s what I know about this flick: she and Josh Duhamel become guardians to an orphaned child, and at some point, Heigl gets poop on her face. Seriously, it sounds like The Ringer 2. If your significant other suggests watching this, leave her. But hey, watch the trailer while you’re here.

My Soul to Take – I remember when this was announced as a big deal. Wes Craven was making an original 3-D horror film that would melt your face. Then I caught the trailer a month ago. As near as I can tell it appears that Craven has reached that point in his career that a lot of directors reach where he asks himself, “What if I take something that I did successfully years ago, change a couple of things around, and slap a new name on it?” A killer starts stalking the seven children who were born the day that, legend has it, he was supposed to have died. Cue dramatic chipmunk.

Stone – A convicted arsonist (Edward Norton) tries to manipulate his way into parole by using his wife (Milla Jovovich) to get at a parole officer (Robert De Niro). Do we really live in a world where a studio exec looked at the poster for this movie and said, “No, De Niro and Norton just aren’t big enough name actors, put Jovovich up there too, we need some of that Resident Evil money,”? It’s too bad Brando’s dead, we could have had a full reunion from The Score. Watch the trailer and enjoy Norton’s dialect.

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