Three wide releases this weekend, three movies that you’ve seen before.
“Saw V: Still Sawin'” offers nothing that was not already featured in the previous four entries. It is one of Hollywood’s Shameful Secrets®, too, which means I had to pay to see it at a midnight screening last night. The promotional screenings at the Lloyd Center are always full of weirdos and homeless people anyway; you can imagine what it’s like at midnight, especially when it’s a movie that attracts people who like to see movies at midnight and who are willing to pay for them.
“High School Musical 3: Senior Year” (review at Film.com) is also more of the same, though that might be one of the selling points. It’s fine for what it is, and I’m glad they made some effort to be bigger for the big screen, rather than just filming another Disney Channel movie and plopping it into theaters.
At the “HSM 3” screening the other night, the cast of “High School Musical: The Ice Tour” was in the audience! The show is in Portland this week, and for sure the cast really wanted to watch “HSM 3” on the big screen on their night off. How terrible it must be to actually be owned by the Disney company.
In other news, apparently there is an ice-skating version of “High School Musical,” and apparently it is welcome in Portland.
“Pride and Glory” isn’t a sequel, but it might as well be. It’s a gritty, violent drama about a New York City cop investigating other cops who might be crooked. Sound familiar? Like maybe there have been 10,000 movies like this already? Yeah. I saw it at the Toronto Film Festival and it made me angry, especially the part where a bad guy threatens to burn a baby with a hot iron and almost actually goes through with it. I was appalled by that. Yet afterward, walking back to the hotel with my buddy Eugene, I was making jokes about ironing babies, because in the abstract sense, ironing a baby is very funny. It’s only when you put it in a realistic context that it’s offensive.
Finally, my review of Oliver Stone’s “W.” is online, if you didn’t already notice it. Don’t misunderestimate it.