A pretty busy week with new releases. Here are the ones that interest me the most:
In my opinion, this film is the biggest story of 2009. How Taken has grossed over $100 million in the slow months of 2009 absolutely astounds me. It had been available on torrent sites for almost a year before its release, but thanks to a slick marketing campaign and an awesome trailer people were interested. Then word of mouth buzz continued the good fortunes of this film. The plot is sinple: a dad is on the phone with his daughter when she is kidnapped and goes all Jack Bauer-like to save her. It’s a nice, tight thriller, and I’m happy that Liam Neeson was in a box office hit. Taken is the big release for the week.
Underworld: Rise of the Lycans
I’m a fan of the first two movies, but it’s never a good thing when the original stars [Kate Beckinsale and Scott Speedman] don’t return. In their place we get Rhona Mitra and Michael Sheen. The third Underworld film didn’t do as well as it’s predecessors, but for fans of genre films about vampires and werewolves [excuse me, “Lycans”], this should be in your collection.
The Dana Carvey Show
I never watched The Dana Carvey Show when it’s short run aired, but seeing who was part of the cast and crew, it’s amazing that it was not a smash hit: Stephen Colbert, Steve Carell, Charlie Kaufman [writer of Adaptation and Being John Malkovich], and Robert Smigel [Triumph The Insult Comic Dog]. Even though reviews of the DVD say a lot of the sketches are hit and miss, I’m still intrigued, mainly because it’s always interesting to see stars before they made it big. Plus – Dana Carvey absolutely owned Saturday Night Live when he was on it.
Seth McFarlane’s Cavalcade of Cartoon Comedy
I’ll be honest, I’m a fan of Family Guy, but I’m not a fan of American Dad. Therefore I know Seth McFarlane can be hit and miss. I know absolutely nothing about what this DVD is about, but if you’re a fan of McFarlane, then it might be worth checking out.
Galaxy Quest: Deluxe Edition
On the heels of Star Trek being released in theatres, Dreamworks tries to capitalize by releasing a Deluxe Edition of Galaxy Quest. I remember watching this when it came out, and although it did get good reviews, I remember not finding it all that funny. However, fans of the film say that it is a good parody of Star Trek.
Anne Hathaway tried her hands at a thriller and unfortunately no one went to see this box office bomb. To be fair, it did not get a strong marketing campaign, and I’m sure the majority of people are going to say that they have never heard of this film. Reviews were not kind, so unless you’re a big fan of Anne Hathaway, you should avoid Passengers.
Our first of two Direct To DVD sequels to get released this week. I haven’t seen the original version or the American remake, so this one does not appeal to me. For fans of the series.
The second Direct To DVD sequel of the week picks up with Donnie’s sister fearing that she might have the same issues that her brother had. The trailer did not impress me, and none of the stars from the first one make an appearance. Also not involved, the original director Richard Kelly, and that’s important because Donnie Darko had his stamp all over it. I liked the original film, but I don’t know why, because it’s quite confusing. For hardcore fans only.