Davis: Rough stuff on the bill at the movies this weekend
Warning: this weekend’s movies are filled with violence, sex, nudity and coarse language plus there’s a movie about fracking.
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters is probably going to be as over-the-top as the title suggests, but it could be both figuratively and literally bloody fun.
Set 15 years after the traumatic incident at the witch’s gingerbread house, the siblings (The Bourne Legacy’s Jeremy Renner and Quantum of Solace’s Gemma Arterton) have now become bounty hunters looking to put down every witch in existence.
Director Taylor Hackford may not be a household name, but he is respected enough in the film industry to be the president of the Directors Guild of America. More importantly, he has directed films like An Officer and a Gentleman, Against All Odds, The Devil’s Advocate and Ray.
For his latest, he takes on the Donald E. Westlake’s (under the pen name of Richard Stark) literary character of Parker, featured in 24 of the author’s novels.
Jason Statham stars as Parker, a ruthless career criminal with almost no traditional redeeming qualities aside from not stealing from the poor or hurting innocent people. But on his latest heist, his crew double crosses him and leaves him for dead. Determined to make them regret it, he tracks them to Palm Beach where the crew is planning their biggest heist ever.
Parker enlists the help of a real estate agent (Jennifer Lopez), an unlikely partner but has the looks, smarts and ambition to help him take everyone down and hijack the score.
Movie 43 is being billed as “the biggest cast ever assembled for the most outrageous comedy ever made.”
At the very least it is an ambitious project featuring 12 different storylines, 11 different directors and 15 different writers all brought together by producers Peter Farrelly and Charles Wessler, who were responsible for movies like There’s Something About Mary and Dumb And Dumber.
The cast includes (deep breath) Seth MacFarlane, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Emma Stone, Cholë Grace Moretz, Gerard Butler, Elizabeth Banks, Kristen Bell, Naomi Watts, Chris Pratt, Kate Winslet, Anna Faris, Richard Gere, Josh Duhamel, Uma Thurman, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Patrick Warburton, Seann William Scott, Live Schreiber, Justin Long, Kieran Culkin, Kate Bosworth, Jason Sudeikis, Leslie Bibb, Bobby Cannavale, Terrance Howard, Tony Shalhoub, Jack McBrayer and Johnny Knoxville.
What Movie 43 reminds me of is movies from the ’70s like If You Don’t Stop It…You’ll Go Blind!!!, Can I Do It ‘Till I Need Glasses? and The Kentucky Fried Movie. These were all compilations of skits that pushed the limits of comedy at the time and if you believe the tagline, Movie 43 will do the same.
Matt Damon reteams with his Good Will Hunting director Gus Van Sant in Promised Land, what many people describe as the movie about fracking.
Damon plays a corporate salesman sent to a financially strapped small town expecting local citizens to readily accept their company’s offer for drilling rights to their properties. What seems like an easy job becomes complicated by objections from the residents.