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John Cusack has new movie out ... but will we ever see it?



shanghai.jpgJohn Cusack is one of the reasons so many of us are stuck in the '80s. The never-unlikeable Chicago native has maintained his boyish looks, still makes a great living as an actor, and every few years he appears in a movie we all really enjoy.

But for every High Fidelity and Hot Tub Time Machine, there's also a Must Love Dogs and Martian Child. Let's face it, John likes a wonder along a wide swatch of film projects. His latest is called Shanghai. But will we get a chance to see it in the neighborhood cineplex anytime soon?

Eh, don't bet on it. The Hollywood Reporter says the "would-be World War II epic romance with a chaser of intrigue" has arrived at fim festivals with an overload of political controversy and a scarcity of narrative punch. For starters, it turns out the Chinese government wasn't ready to allow filmmakers to shoot the period piece in the Communist country. Still, the movie will find audience somewhere.

"In Asia, pan-continental stars Gong Li, Chow Yun-fat and Ken Watanabe will generate interest," THR says. "Domestically, the film will face its biggest hurdle in its undetermined release date. Box office prospects look middling at best, if not outright bleak."

So Netflix anyone?

More importantly, how is Cusack's performance? 

"Cusack and Gong generate little in the way of sexual tension," THR reveals. "The all-important kiss-or-fight sequence has zero erotic charge, coming off as a spat between siblings. Watanabe, one of Asia's most dignified actors, is forced to maneuver around unwieldy stereotyping."

Yeesh. We can read between the lines.

Up next for Cusack is The Factory, a flick about an obsessed cop on the trail of a serial killer in Buffalo. Look for that to hit U.S. screens in 2011.

[Last modified: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 10:23am]


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