New movies this week
The gist: Four suburban schlubs start a neighborhood watch — the original title of the movie until the whole Trayvon Martin incident — and accidentally uncover an alien invasion. Let's hope they accidentally uncover some laughs. R
The cast: Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill, Richard Ayoade, Rosemarie DeWitt and Will Forte.
The buzz: The only true accident seems to be making this clunker, the critics moan. "You're unlikely to laugh much, and you may get an unexpected case of the non-art-imitates-bad-life creeps," Time laments.
Beasts of the Southern Wild
The gist: A dreamlike fable about a 6-year-old girl in an isolated Louisiana bayou community who struggles to save the only world she knows from giant boars coming to destroy the world after a Hurricane Katrina-like storm she thinks her behavior caused. Yes, it's a wild ride. PG-13
The cast: Quvenzhane Wallis, Dwight Henry, Levy Easterly, Lowell Landes, Pamela Harper and Gina Montana.
The buzz: Director Benh Zeitlin's first feature sings. "Beasts of the Southern Wild is like outsider art: patched together with found materials, conjured up by untrained artists (the actors), and evocative of a truly American attitude of eccentricity, boldness, transcendence," the Philadelphia Inquirer says.
Step Up Revolution
The gist: Another Step Up movie, this time set in Miami, where there's trouble with a developer threatening to evict thousands of people in a neighborhood, and only dance can save the day. Or the end of the housing boom, whichever bottoms out first. PG-13
The cast: Ryan Guzman, Kathryn McCormick, Misha Gabriel, Peter Gallagher, Stephen Boss and Mia Michaels.
The buzz: Really, what are you looking for here, story? Or some hot dance crews? "Step Up: Revolution is the fourth of the Step Up movies, a series of unconnected stories that serve as showcases for the kinds of young stars who sincerely hope they'll soon be in better movies," the Chicago Sun-Times says.
— Joshua Gillin firstname.lastname@example.org