In Theaters This Weekend: Due Date/Megamind/127 Hours – big movies prove there’s something for everyone

5 Nov

The summer blockbusters notwithstanding, the Thanksgiving/Christmas season is the biggest time of year, not just for big-budget buzz movies, but the smaller art-house flicks looking for steam heading into Oscar season. And just like every other industry, Christmas starts earlier every year, so now that those pesky scary Halloween movies are out of the way, we get our first round of big movies for the holiday season.

The first big movie coming out is Due Date, the much anticipated reunion of Zach Galifianakis and Todd Phillips, his Hangover director. Starring Robert Downey Jr. as a dad-to-be who has to get home to witness the birth of his child, the only ride he can hitch is with Galifianakis, the John Candy to his Steve Martin in this Planes, Trains and Automobiles update. Expect the laughs you got from other Phillips movies, but with a touch of schmaltz, as the odd couple of Galifianakis/Downey Jr. is bound to culminate in a touching meeting of the minds, most likely in the delivery room.

Next is Megamind, the animated 3D superhero movie from Dreamworks, that looks suspiciously like Pixar’s The Incredibles. Never mind that, and just focus on what it has – Will Farrell and Tina Fey doing the voices in a hero movie where the bad guy wins. With Farrell voicing the super-villain Megamind, and a sidekick role going to David Cross, look for hilarious banter between the two, as having the run of the city turns out to not be quite as fun as it seemed. And Fey turns everything she touches into comedic gold, so don’t be bothered if the plot seems a bit familiar.

And the third film opening this week in limited release, and our Will It Suck? pick of the week, is 127 Hours, the true story of hiker Aron Ralston, who if you remember got his arm stuck under a boulder for five days, and was forced to cut his own arm off to survive. The heavy topic is taken on deftly by Danny Boyle, the edgy youthful director behind Trainspotting, 28 Days Later, and the Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire. He picks James Franco to play Ralston, sticks him under a giant rock, and lets the cameras rip, in what promises to be one of the best films of the year, and could potentially nab Boyle his second Oscar in two straight films. Keep an eye on this one.

Other openings: Fair Game, the story of leaked CIA agent Valerie Plame, played by Naomi Watts, is hitting a number of theaters, and For Colored Girls, the latest Tyler Perry movie starring a who’s who list of black actresses, from Janet Jackson, Thandie Newton, Whoopi Goldberg to Phylicia Rashad (Clair Huxtable!).

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