Saturday, September 20, 2008

Movies opening this week

Hear me talk about ... well, just one of these movies with Anthony Del Valle, theater critic for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and former film critic for the Las Vegas Mercury and Las Vegas CityLife, on this week's aborted Josh Bell Hates Everything podcast. Technical difficulties forced it to be cut short; things should be back on track next week.

Elegy (Ben Kingsley, Penelope Cruz, Dennis Hopper, Patricia Clarkson, dir. Isabel Coixet)
My review in Las Vegas Weekly
This movie was all set to open a few weeks ago (I even posted about it, and was then chastised in the comments) but was pulled by the theater at the last minute. It's actually opening this week, but I have nothing more to say that isn't already in the review, or that previous post, or my podcast that week with Ken Miller. Opened limited Aug. 8; in Las Vegas this week (really)

Ghost Town (Ricky Gervais, Greg Kinnear, Téa Leoni, dir. David Koepp)
My review in Las Vegas Weekly
I've never watched either the British version of The Office or Extras, so I'm largely unfamiliar with Gervais, although I know that those projects are decidedly less mainstream than this broad, predictable comedy. Yet he was really the one element that saved this from being a total waste of time, and I think that if he wants to be a Hollywood star, he probably can be. I get the feeling that his talents will be better appreciated in material closer to the more difficult stuff he's done for TV, though. Wide release

Keith (Jesse McCartney, Elisabeth Harnois, dir. Todd Kessler)
The only reason I watched this movie was to be able to talk about it on the podcast, and that didn't even work out, so it was an especially pointless endeavor. This is a forgettable indie that's been on the shelf for a while, and is getting a release exclusively in Vegas (for now at least) by Lili Claire Communications, the new movie-distribution arm of the charitable Lili Claire Foundation. It's an odd arrangement - apparently the Foundation is planning to get into the movie-distribution biz in order to raise money for itself. I don't know how sound a strategy this is, but the bottom line here is that ticket sales for this movie help Lili Claire, a worthwhile organization that supports children with neurogenetic conditions. Too bad the movie is so terrible, then, a predictable, cloying, preachy melodrama about an annoying outsider who falls in love with a straitlaced high-schooler and teaches her to break out of her rigid routine and enjoy life, blah blah blah. McCartney, a minor pop singer, is terrible in the title role as an obnoxious teen who basically annoys a girl into liking him, although he only annoyed me enough to make me want to punch him. This one deserved to be consigned to a closet after playing a festival or two, and if anyone is tempted to see it to help out the deserving folks at Lili Claire, they'd do far better to just send the organization a check, and then rent something else. Limited release

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

This film is a masterpiece! Are you stupid? Or are you unable to experience feelings?

Anonymous said...

PS: For "Keith"

Josh said...

Believe it or not, I'm neither stupid nor unable to experience feelings, just resistant to emotionally manipulative movies with terrible acting. But I appreciate your dedication in defending this movie on a three-year-old blog post.

Anonymous said...

yeah seriously u are either an unqualified move critic or your just heartless and unexperienced. this movie IS a masterpiece. just because its an indie doesn't mean it didn't do well and that its not a good film to watch. jesse mccartney was so believable in this movie i even forgot it was him. its a film that u have to go into not knowing anything. the person who made the trailer should suffer a horrible career end. they totally spilled everything there was to know about this movie. It was amazing and will stay with me forever. its the first film i recommend to anyone.

Josh said...

I'm not sure why all the Keith fans are suddenly coming out of the woodwork three years later, but I didn't criticize it for being an independent film or for having a spoiler-filled trailer. It was a terrible movie no matter what the budget, with none of the creativity that marks good independent films, and no trailer was needed to be able to predict the outcome of the story. It's about as far from a masterpiece as you can get.

Anonymous said...

yeah you wish. really no one care about your opinions lol please stop writing and criticizing movies because you're horrible at it sorry to say. you would probably say that "the hangover" which is a completely worthless movie is better than "keith". wouldn't surprise me. i'm just really sorry you didn't discover the wonderful lesson keith has to offer and your about as cold as a fish. maybe you should try watching it again.