Monday, March 18, 2013

Movies of 2013 -- January through March

Zero Dark Thirty
Excellent lead performance by Jessica Chastain.  Raised a lot of questions it didn't answer.  I also agree with Kathryn Bigelow that portrayal is not the same as endorsement and that this wouldn't be a very realistic account if torture wasn't acknowledged at all, given the way it overshadowed the ongoing wars themselves in many ways.

Escape from Planet Earth
Just not very good.

Side Effects
A very intriguing movie that takes an unexpected plot turn about halfway through.  Very good performance by Rooney Mara as a young woman dealing with depression and the titular side effects her drugs have left her with.

Jack the Giant Slayer
The cast had great potential, but ultimately the film falls flat.  A promising female protagonist quickly turns into just a princess in peril who needs rescuing.  The cast does at least seem to be having fun, but the gory (and often just-off-screen) deaths don't match that tone.

Oz the Great and Powerful
Also a story with potential, but James Franco is annoying, smug, and not at all fun to watch as the lead.  Ultimately disappointing.

Tina Fey and Paul Rudd are both likable, affable leads, but it's easier to root for the actors than the characters in this fine but not great romantic comedy.