Neither a chain of spice stores nor a Food Network program, The Seasoning House is a bleak-as-nuclear-winter thriller set during the Balkan conflict of the 1990s. A deaf girl named Angel (Brit teen Rosie Day) is taken from her home by soldiers who shoot her mother dead.
Paul Schrader’s The Canyons opens and closes with a montage of abandoned movie theaters. For this film in particular, that choice strikes one as symbolic in several ways: not only as a comment on the state of the industry, but on the state of The Canyons itself. You’re unlikely to find many 2013 films this empty.
What's a director of classic musicals doing in science fiction? Making Saturn 3, one of the worst of the genre Hollywood made in the immediate post-Star Wars / Alien era. Stanley Donen (Singin' in the Rain) takes to it about as well as you'd expect; he's in over his head.
Military marksman Col. Jim McQuade (Gregory Hines, Running Scared) is called into top-secret duty to neutralize a surveillance robot gone haywire in San Francisco. It won't be easy, because for one thing, the android is undetectable from a human. For another, it has a built-in nuclear bomb that will detonate upon imminent threat.
I plead guilty: My friends and I have goofed around with a camcorder before and made stupid movies, but we were smart enough to know that no one outside ourselves would think they were funny. If only the makers of Caesar and Otto's Deadly Xmas realized the same.
The movie I dreamt about in 1978 is now a month away from hitting theaters. I speak, of course, about The Best Exotic Marigold HotelThe Avengers, which opens May 4.
Presumably the comic-book movie to end all comic-book movies, The Avengers fronts an all-star lineup of superheroes: Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Thor, Hawkeye, Black Widow and Sgt. Nick Fury. Even casual moviegoers know this blockbuster has been in the works for years, with Marvel Studios using post-credits stinger sequences to connect one stand-alone film to the next, starting with Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man alter ego, Tony Stark, meeting Samuel L. Jackson’s Fury in a bar at the tail end of 2008’s The Incredible Hulk.
Now, viewers with buns of steel and a vacation day to burn can watch all the dots be connected, in order, as Harkins Bricktown Cinemas offers the Ultimate Avengers Marathon of six movies on May 3, all leading to the midnight premiere of The Avengers.
The lineup begins at 11:30 a.m. with Hulk, followed by: • Iron Man at 2 p.m. • Iron Man 2 at 4:30 p.m. • Thor at 7 p.m. • Captain America: The First Avenger at 9:15 p.m. • The Avengers at 12:01 a.m.
The final three will be show in 3-D.
Tickets are $25 and now on sale at harkinstheatres.com/avengers or at the Harkins Bricktown box office. The package includes extra goodies, including two free small popcorns, a commemorative lanyard and a bag o’ swag.
To be honest, I doubt the movie can live up to the 7-year-old me’s idea, but I look forward to it nonetheless. Even if I’m far more stoked for Prometheus, The Dark Knight Rises and, yep, The Expendables 2. —Rod Lott