Before writing this column, I spent a long time trying to decide what to write about the events in Aurora, Colorado, last week, if I was going to mention it at all or even submit a column this week.
However, instead of letting it prevent me from doing what I normally do, I will take a moment to express my sympathies to all who were affected by the tragedy as I cannot even imagine what they have gone through.
Otherwise, I will let the rest of the media report and comment on the events of last week while I will continue to write about movies, as they are still one of the best escapes from everyday life.
Coincidentally, another movie coming out this week was affected by a recent event in the news.
The new science fiction comedy The Watch was originally titled Neighbourhood Watch, but in March, 20th Century Fox decided to change the name in light of the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Florida. However, other than the original title of the movie, the story bears no resemblance to true-life events.
Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill and Richard Ayoade star as a group of suburbanites who form a neighbourhood watch group to allow them time to escape from their families and boring lives.
But when they accidentally discover that their town has become overrun with aliens posing as ordinary suburbanites, they have no choice but to save their neighbourhood (and the world) from total extermination.
Co-written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg (Knocked Up, Superbad, Pineapple Express) this movie is far removed from E.T., with an 18A rating for lots of swearing and violence and some sex and nudity.
To Rome with Love is the latest from Woody Allen, who has created yet another quirky comedy told in four separate vignettes—a worker who wakes up to find himself a celebrity; a famous American architect who takes a trip back to the street he lived on as a student; a young couple on their honeymoon drawn into separate romantic encounters; and a singing mortician who captures the attention of an opera director.
Allen has assembled yet another impressive cast which includes himself, Alec Baldwin, Roberto Benigni, Penelope Cruz, Judy Davis, Jesse Eisenberg and Ellen Page.
Finally, Step Up Revolution is the fourth movie in the successful dance franchise which, like the third movie, is presented in 3D.
While the story is secondary to the dancing, this one centres itself around a young woman who arrives in Miami with aspirations of becoming a professional dancer.
She falls in love with a young man who leads a dance crew in elaborate, cutting-edge flash mobs.
The young woman is played by Kathryn McCormick, who rose to fame during the sixth season of TV’s So You Think You Can Dance.