Weekend At The Movies

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While the numbers this weekend at the box office remain a mystery for now, it is not hard to guess that at least one film from this weekend’s openings will get an Oscar nomination. This weekend boast some greatly anticipated films like “12 Years a Slave,” “The Fifth Estate” and “Kill Your Darlings.” All three films may not run away with the top earning spot (especially “Darlings” as it is opening to a limited release) but you can be assured that they will leave a mark in the award committees minds and hearts. Meanwhile other films released today include another “Carrie” remake, Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger trying to check out of prison in “Escape Plan” and Robert Redford, a boat, and an angry sea in “All Is Lost.” Here’s a breakdown of all of this weekend releases (source: IMDB.com):

Carrie (2013) Poster

Carrie (2013)

Certificate R 100 min   –   Drama | Horror

A reimagining of the classic horror tale about Carrie White, a shy girl outcast by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother, who unleashes telekinetic terror on her small town after being pushed too far at her senior prom.
Director:

Kimberly Peirce

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THE BUZZ: It’s unsurprising to see Brian De Palma’s creation applied to modern times, the age of heightened awareness of peer-to-peer bullying. I’ll spare you any commentary on the remake trend and say: at least the casting choices are ace. Though it will be completely different in tone, I will use Chlöe Moretz’s performance as Carolyn Stoddard in Dark Shadowsas the litmus test for her stepping into a character immortalized by Sissy Spacek.

The Fifth Estate (2013) Poster

The Fifth Estate (2013)

Certificate R 128 min   –   Biography | Drama | Thriller

Metascore: 51/100 (17 reviews)
A dramatic thriller based on real events that reveals the quest to expose the deceptions and corruptions of power that turned an Internet upstart into the 21st century’s most fiercely debated organization.
Director:

Bill Condon

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THE BUZZ: The first Internet-maverick profile since The Social Network worked hard to create a a Zero Dark Thirty-level controversy/conversation with its marketing campaign. Julian Assange himself denounced an early version of the script, saying its structure was built on a series of lies – though it’s hard to know which screenplay he saw, as DreamWorks used two different books as the basis of the filmed story. Don’t expect his voice to be silent at any stage unless he wants it to be. In lighter news, director Bill Condon might find himself back in Oscar contention for the first time since his Chicago screenplay, and we will take our Benedict Cumberbatch starring roles in any form.

12 Years a Slave (2013) Poster

12 Years a Slave (2013)

Certificate R 133 min   –   Biography | Drama | History

Metascore: 92/100 (18 reviews)
In the antebellum United States, Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery.
Director:

Steve McQueen

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THE BUZZ: While it won’t be an easy watch, Chiwetel Ejiofor finally gets a leading role in a project that should artfully exhibit his range as an actor. Steve McQueen reunites with Fox Searchlight, who distributed his last work, Shame, for another brave outing from the writer/director. We’re interested to see how McQueen works on a larger scale given the depth of this cast and the period setting.

Escape Plan (2013) Poster

Escape Plan (2013)

Certificate R 116 min   –   Action | Mystery | Thriller

Metascore: 47/100 (7 reviews)
When a structural-security authority finds himself set up and incarcerated in the world’s most secret and secure prison, he has to use his skills to escape with help from the inside.
Director:

Mikael Håfström

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THE BUZZ: Whether this is one of your most-anticipated action movies of the year, or if you think the premise sounds like a metaphor for either Stallone or Schwarzenegger’s chosen profession, the real downward spiral being felt here has to be by director Mikael Häfström.

All Is Lost (2013) Poster

All Is Lost (2013) – [Limited]

Certificate PG-13 106 min   –   Action | Drama

Metascore: 84/100 (17 reviews)
After a collision with a shipping container at sea, a resourceful sailor finds himself, despite all efforts to the contrary, staring his mortality in the face.
Director:

J.C. Chandor

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THE BUZZ: From the sound of the reviews coming out of Cannes, what might be lost is J.C. Chandor’s momentum after Margin Call proved to be a theatrical success and VOD phenomenon. Seems Chandor and Robert Redford were going for a meditative thriller but might have wound up with something a little more on the aggravating/disappointing side. Still, we don’t rule out a re-edit and more welcoming acceptance when the film hits theaters.

Kill Your Darlings (2013) Poster

Kill Your Darlings (2013) – [Limited]

Certificate R 104 min   –   Biography | Drama | Romance | Thriller

Metascore: 61/100 (14 reviews)
A murder in 1944 draws together the great poets of the beat generation: Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac and William Burroughs.
Director:

John Krokidas

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THE BUZZ: When a cast such as this is paired with a first-time director, we can rely on the performances if the script and filmmaking aren’t always the strongest. The seems to be the prevailing feeling here, at least with festival-goers, but we’re unsure if their feedback will register since everyone is talking about the sex scene between Danielle Radcliffe and Dane DeHaan. We’re surprised that Sony Pictures Classics didn’t cut a new trailer teasing it right before opening weekend.

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