6/16/2012 10:07:00 AM
1. BIG MIRACLE: Barrow, Alaska, 1989. Two whales are trapped in the ice near this small town, and in a based-on-fact-sort-of movie, we see the efforts of the media, Greenpeace, a number of local Inuit, and dozens of townspeople, work frantically for days trying to save the magnificent creatures from death by drowning as open water is too far away for them to swim under the ice. Drew Barrymore is the Greenpeace rep, John Kraskinski excellent as a TV reporter for the local news, and Ted Danson is fine as the rich oilman who could be a cad, but turns into something of a hero. Good movie, but it plays fast and loose with the facts. Rated PG.
2. WANDERLUST: Jennifer Aniston, Paul Rudd, and a great deal of full frontal male nudity com in to play in this sitcom of a movie about a New York City couple forced to vacate their Manhattan digs and their Big Apple lifestyle by an economy that knocks the financial pins out from under them. They end up in rural areas looking to settle in, have a turn at a nudist colony (that’s where the nudity comes in) and a commune where anything goes. Not a particularly good film, but with Aniston and Rudd, worth watching for their spin on these roles. If you remember the trailer in which Rudd’s character walks in on Aniston in bed with two women ... you’ll find that the scene is not even in the movie. Rated R.
3. SEEKING JUSTICE: Nicolas Cage will do anything – on screen or off. Here, he is Will Gerard, a New Orleans resident who is playing chess with a friend while his wife is out on the street getting assaulted. He wants revenge, and is contacted by a group that can deal with her assailant, in exchange for a favour in the future. Well, it’s the future – six months later Will is contacted by the shadow group, and asked to kill a paedophile. Seems fair, but after the murder, which is more accident than intent, Will learns that the victim was an award winning journalist who just happened to be investigating the very people who asked Will to do the deed. Now, what to do? Guy Pierce, January Jones, and Jennifer Carpenter star. Rated 18A.
4. RICK’S PICK: BIG MIRACLE: If you watch closely to the real news clips of the actual event that play out on TV sets in the background, you’ll see a sportscaster on Alaskan television from 1989 … Sara Palin, the one and the same.
6. AT THE MOVIES: ROCK OF AGES / THAT’S MY BOY: Tom Cruise is quite amazing as Stacee Jaxx, but the movie, not so much! / A bumbling Adam Sandler vehicle that is just a bad, R-rated sitcom episode.
7. OPENING THIS WEEKEND: ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER / BRAVE /: Yes, it’s THAT Abraham Lincoln, who, before he freed the slaves, was saving the US from a vampire hoard / Disney-Pixar animated 3D film about a young princess who chooses an unconventional way to serve her kingdom.