Friday movie roundup – May 11

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Your assigned viewing this week is “Waitress,” which is in limited release, so it might not be playing where you live. Which will make your assignment a little more difficult, I know, because you might have to drive a couple hundred miles. But do it anyway! Or, OK, I guess you can wait if you have to. But if it is playing where you live, I implore you to see it at once.

I love this movie. I’ve seen it twice, once at Sundance and once at a local screening last week, and I just adore it. I’m almost afraid to talk about how much I love it, partly because I don’t want to oversell it, and partly because I don’t want to run the risk of hearing someone tell me they didn’t like it. That would make me so sad. It would be like telling me you didn’t like my puppy.

In wide release, your best bet is “28 Weeks Later,” the sequel to the awesome zombie flick “28 Days Later,” from 2003. The sequel is nearly as good and has the same general feel as the earlier film. There are some moments of real pants-pooping terror.

Another great thing about “28 Weeks Later”: The two British kids in it are played by actors named Mackintosh Muggleton and Imogen Poots! What delightful names! Surely those are not real people, but rather characters from a Roald Dahl novel. Mackintosh Muggleton and Imogen Poots! Say their names aloud! Sing them to your favorite tune! Huzzah!

Of course in England, you can be named Mackintosh Muggleton and/or Imogen Poots and no one bats an eye. The Brits are funny that way.

“The Ex” is a not-bad-but-not-very-good comedy starring Zach Braff, Jason Bateman, and Amanda Peet. It’s definitely a case where the talented actors make the material seem better than it is. I recommend it, but just barely.

I definitely do not recommend “Georgia Rule,” a hideously discordant dramedy about three generations of messed-up women. It’s directed by Garry Marshall, who gave us the ham-fisted classics “The Other Sister,” “Dear God,” and the “Princess Diaries” movies, among others. Here he tackles the subject of sexual molestation and child abuse, all in a sunny and carefree manner! Hooray! It’s fun! Imogen Poots!

Finally, there’s “Delta Farce,” not screened for critics. From this week’s “In the Dark” comes this summary:

Sweet lovable Pooh Bear, does this ever look bad. It’s about three Army reservists who get shipped to Iraq, except they accidentally wind up in Mexico, which they THINK is Iraq. Not bad enough for you? It stars Larry the Cable Guy, Bill Engvall, and DJ Qualls (the freaky-skinny kid from various other gross-out comedies). Still not bad enough? It’s called “DELTA FARCE,” for crying out loud! Here’s a tip: Movies whose titles announce to you how funny they’re supposed to be ARE NEVER FUNNY. (Same goes for the tagline: “War isn’t funny, but this movie is.” If you have to TELL us that you’re funny, you’re probably not actually funny.) The trailer makes me gape in horror. So, um, yeah, I’ll review it this weekend. And I’ll go into with a totally open mind! I promise! Maybe I’ll be surprised and it will be genuinely funny! Believe me, I’d much rather watch a good comedy than a bad one.

The publicist for Lions Gate e-mailed us all a couple weeks ago to see if we wanted to do interviews for the film. I asked if there was going to be a screening, and she said no, but she could get me the press notes if I needed them. I declined the interviews, but I love what was tacitly being said: “The movie is too awful to show to you, but would you mind helping us publicize it anyway by publishing an interview with the cast?”

I don’t like doing interviews anyway, and I would never do one for a film I hadn’t seen, but I was tempted in this case. Larry the Cable Guy was up for grabs, and there are a few things I’d like to say to him. Not really questions, I guess, but some things I’d like to get off my chest. They would not be printable, or nice.

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OK, so Agent Aaron Pierce isn’t exactly kicking butt in this photo. But that’s the great thing about him. He doesn’t ALWAYS have to be kicking butt. Sometimes you just need a strong, quiet type to be your back-up, and if you do, Agent Pierce is your guy.

Also, an actor named Glenn Morshower was available, as he apparently plays a role in the film, and I would love to talk to him. Why? Because Glenn Morshower played Secret Service Agent Aaron Pierce on “24,” and he was my hero. He’s like a less flashy version of Jack Bauer, saving the day, getting the job done, and being 100 percent loyal to the United States and the principles of freedom. There was this one time where some terrorists hit the motorcade with a bomb, and I thought Aaron Pierce was dead, and I was like, “Nooooo!,” but then he sat up in the front seat and he was like, “Mrs. Logan (that was the First Lady’s name), get down!” and then he started shooting at the bad guys before they could come finish what they started, and he totally killed them all. It was so awesome.

Anyway, the point is, go see “Waitress.”

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This week’s “In the Dark” podcast is here, or you can subscribe to the feed with the link at the top of the right-hand column on this page. It’s kinda long this week, so get comfortable. Maybe curl up with a steaming mug of Mackintosh Muggleton.

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