A Review of Recent Movies: What’s in Theaters?

Posted by    |    January 6th, 2013 at 11:29 pm

Over the past few weeks and during the Holidays, there have been a lot of new movies released in theaters.  Below is a brief description of a few of the movies recently released. Enjoy!

Django Unchained:

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Django Unchained is an extravagant, outrageous film by director Quentin Tarantino (Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill: Vol. 1, Inglorious Bastards).  This film tells a very unique story about a bounty hunter (Waltz) and a slave (Foxx) living in the south during the Civil War who team together to rescue the slave’s wife (Washington) from a plantation in Mississippi.  This film is very brutal, gory, and over-the-top in a Tarantino-like way.  Some have called Django Unchained racist and offensive, while others find it to be wildly entertaining and complex.  Starring Christopher Waltz, Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio, Samuel L. Jackson, and Kerry Washington, Django Unchained could be one of Tarantino’s best and complete films.  This film is a bit long, running 2 hours and 45 minutes, but it will keep you engaged throughout.  Django Unchained is rated R for strong graphic violence, vicious fight scenes, language and some nudity.  4.3 out of 5 stars.

Jack Reacher:

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Starring Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, Richard Jenkins, David Oyelowo, and Robert Duvall, Jack Reacher is an action crime thriller about an ex-military investigator who tries to solve a mass shooting case involving a trained military sniper with multiple random killings.  This film is action packed and features Tom Cruise kicking ass as Jack Reacher.  The fighting sequences are decently realistic looking, and Tom Cruise does a fair job as an unstoppable detective.  The plot is a bit complicated, and there are many twists that constantly change the story.  Jack Reacher is rated PG-13 for violence, language, and some drug material.  Running time is 2 hours and 10 minutes.  3 out of 5 stars.

Les Miserables:

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Les Miserables is a dramatic musical about a newly released French prisoner in the 19th century who violates his parole and spends his life hiding from the law.  Becoming quite successful, the ex-prisoner, played by Hugh Jackman, helps one of his factory worker’s young daughters, forever changing their lives.  This film tells an incredible story about love, passion, sacrifice, and survival, and redemption.  Les Miserables has very few spoken lines, and the story is told through the live singing performances of the star-studded cast.  Although Les Miserables is a masterpiece, this film is not for everyone.  Les Miserables stars Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Sacha Baron Cohen, and Helena Bonham Carter.  This film is rated PG-13 for sexual material and violence.  Running time is 2 hours and 37 minutes.  4 out of 5 stars.

This Is 40:

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Creator and director Judd Apatow (The 40 Year Old Virgin, Funny People) brings you This Is 40, a sort of sequel to Knocked UpThis film follows the lives of Pete (Paul Rudd) and Debbie (Leslie Mann) years after the events of Knocked Up.  Also starring Jason Segel, Megan Fox, Maude Apatow, and Iris Apatow, This Is 40 is a hit or miss comedy filled with adult humor and real-life dilemmas/drama, which a lot of moviegoers should be able to relate to.  This film is 2 hours and 14 minutes long and is rated R for sexual content, crude humor, pervasive language and drug material.  3.3 out of 5 stars.

 Parental Guidance:

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

 

Parental Guidance is family comedy starring Billy Crystal, Bette Midler, and Marisa Tomei.  When grandparents Artie (Crystal) and Diane (Midler) agree to watch the children while their parents are away, they meet their match as their old school ways collide with 21st century parenting.  This film has not been as popular in theaters as its holiday competition, but is a warm, funny film that is great for the whole family.  Parental Guidance is rated PG for some rude humor and the running time is 1 hour and 44 minutes.  2.8 out of 5 stars.

 

The Guilt Trip:

Courtesy of Google Images

Courtesy of Google Images

Starring Seth Rogen and Barbra Streisand, The Guilt Trip is a light comedy about a mother and son who embark on an unexpected cross-country road trip.  When inventor Andy Brewster (Rogen) hits the road to try and sell his newest invention, he invites his mother (Streisand) to come along.  Seth Rogen plays a very familiar smart and sarcastic/funny role, while Streisand plays a much more down-to-earth and caring mother than she did in Meet The FockersThe Guilt Trip is reasonably funny and the Rogen/Streisand pair works for the most part.  This film has a very simple plot and is not a must-see in theaters.  The Guilt Trip is rated PG-13 for language and some risqué material.  Running time is 1 hour and 35 minutes.  3.2 out of 5 stars.

By: Hayden Pittman, Film Critic for YouPlusDallas

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Have you seen any of these films?  What did you think?  Feel free to leave comments below.  Thanks for reading!

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