New movies this week
The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus
The gist: Heath's Ledger's final film, in which people go to a magical traveling morality tale to explore the human condition. That sounds much more serious than even EPCOT. PG-13
Starring: Ledger, Christopher Plummer, Tom Waits, Lily Cole, Andrew Garfield, Verne Troyer, Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell and Jude Law.
The buzz: If this weren't a Terry Gilliam movie, it wouldn't work. However: "This is an Imaginarium indeed," the Chicago Sun-Times' Roger Ebert says. "The best approach is to sit there and let it happen to you; see it in the moment and not with long-term memory, which seems to be what Parnassus does."
Youth In Revolt
The gist: How long will Michael Cera play teenagers? And this time he develops an alter ego who's supposed to be rebellious and cool. Kinda like Stefan Urquelle on Family Matters. R
Starring: Cera, Portia Doubleday, Steve Buscemi, Justin Long, Ray Liotta, Jean Smart, Fred Willard and Zach Galifianakis.
The buzz: Seriously, let's see Cera play a prison guard or a truck driver already. Some like it, but not Entertainment Weekly: "Timing is everything. And Youth in Revolt is late — arriving not just at the tail end of the star's sell-by date for this particular kind of character, but more importantly at the tail end of the intended audience's attention span for an inconsequential Sundance-y tale of sexual coming-of-age."
The gist: A woman is longing for a proposal from her boyfriend, but when she's stranded on the wrong side of Ireland as she tries to propose to him on Feb. 29, she has to rely on a manly Irish lad (as if there's another kind, says the Irish capsule writer) to help her get to her indecisive mate. Gee, how's this one gonna end? PG
Starring: Amy Adams, Matthew Goode, Adam Scott and John Lithgow.
The buzz: Yes, you've seen it before. Yes, the Arizona Republic says it's "a by-the-numbers romantic comedy as predictable as it is cloying." Yes, couples will see it anyway.
The gist: A counterweight for the Twilight crowd, in which humans are stored in blood banks as mankind slowly dies out from a plague that turns them into vampires. Kinda like Blade meets The Omega Man. R
Starring: Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe, Claudia Karvan, Michael Dorman, Vince Colosimo, Isabel Lucas and Sam Neill.
The buzz: Despite a good cast and a spark of originality, it's about what you'd expect from a Hollywood monster movie, i.e. not the greatest. "Indeed, despite its fantasy trappings ... Daybreakers emerges as a competent but routine chase thriller that lacks attention-getting dialogue, unique characters or memorable setpieces that might make it a genre keeper rather than a polished time-filler," Variety says. We'll rent it eventually.
— Joshua Gillin [email protected]