Movies In Theaters on April 14, 2011
I hope you are either an outdoor enthusiast or a huge basketball fan, because the pickings are slim at Ye Olde House of Moving Pictures this weekend. We’ve got a sequel that is ten years past its experation date, a cartoon about talking birds, and Robert Redford signing out of the retirement home long enough to direct a Civil War film with no buzz. Let’s get to it.
Endless Screams, Exotic Birds, Dead Presidents
First up we have Scream 4, or Scre4m, as the cool kids are calling it. Neve Campbell happily collects a paycheck to reprise her role as Sidney Prescott, survivor of the first three films in the franchise. Sidney comes home to Woodsboro as part of a book tour, where she reconnects with fellow survivors Sheriff Dewey (David Arquette) and Gale (Courtney Cox). It isn’t long before the Ghostface Killer also appears, not only to haunt the original cast, but to terrorize an all-new generation (Emma Roberts, Hayden Panettiere) as well. Directed (Wes Craven) and written (Kevin Williamson) by the original filmmakers, it’s hard to tell who is less excited about the release of this film; audiences, or the studio releasing it.
Next, we have Rio, a cartoon about talking birds. Alright, a little more detail. Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) is a domesticated blue macaw living in Minnesota that is flown to Rio de Janeiro to mate with the wild Jewel (Anne Hathaway), in an attempt to save their endangered species. While under protective custody, they are kidnapped by poachers. Thus begins 90 minutes of misadventures. I will have a full review for you on Friday, but I will say that, while I had my problems with the film, it is still in my top five for 2011 so far.
Finally, we finish out the week with The Conspirator, Robert Redford’s (Quiz Show) return to the silver screen. The true story of Mary Surratt (Robin Wright), the only woman to be charged as a co-conspirator in the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, the only reason film studios pony up the cash to finance movies like this is to attract nominations at the end of the year during award season. For this film to be released in the middle of April, with no ad campaign, spells disaster.