Movies: You Know The Holidays Are Here When…

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Let’s say you’re a young filmmaker. And you’ve just completed what you think is a major work of art; a film you want the world to see. And lo and behold along comes a Movie Studio that says “Say, Young Filmmaker. We love your picture!” Naturally you’re positively beaming,  and you wish that everyone you’d ever met could hear this. And then the movie studio says, “Here now, we’ve got your perfect release date! Your movie is going to come out in theaters the weekend of November the 19th 2010.” At which point you should grab your copy of your movie and run for the hills because this is not a movie studio that’s going anywhere. Know why? Because today’s probably the hands-down worst day of the entire year to open any kind of movie. Good one, bad one, even an indifferent one. It’s just not going to make any difference. See, Harry Potter’s arrived and what that means is that everything else will go completely unnoticed; all other flicks will seem sort of invisible and meaningless compared to the Hogwarts behemoth that is here.  (Just to give you some perspective – the last four Harry Potter books have been the fastest-selling books in history. How’s that??) Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, baddie Ralph Fiennes and the rest of the gang are back for what is actually the first part of the final book. (Is this why Breaking Dawn got split up too??) It’s high noon for Harry and LVold. Anyway the movie’s here today (it already sold out everywhere last night ) and you might want to check for availability on the ticket front should you wish to venture out with other Muggles to catch it. I’m no accountant, nor any kind of businessperson, but I am quite positive this one will be devoured by moviegoers – and then some. Plus, it appeals to both genders and speaks to quite a broad age range so no problems for the date-night crowd, either. It’s so big it’s not even a guilty pleasure for anyone. It just is. And I’ll absolutely see it. Unlike the Twilight series I haven’t read any of the Harry Potter books. Didn’t appeal to me, although I realize that’s just shy of blasphemy these days. However, I have seen every one of the Harry Potter films. Do I remember what happens in each? Absolutely not. Could I tell you what character popped up in which movie? No way. Have I the faintest idea how each HP movie is distinguished/in any way different from one another? None at all.  Yet, did I enjoy them? Immensely. Talk about forgetting where you are for two hours. Each one was terrific. Just don’t ask me to offer up any kind of chronology other than my basic theory that Harry, Ron and Hermione do actually get older. That’s all I know. But fun? Are they ever.

To be fair, there are other movies opening this weekend in the hopes of trying to lure a few people away. First up we have The Next Three Days with Russell Crowe and Elizabeth Banks and it looks pretty breathless and dangerous (Crowe has to break into a prison to rescue his incarcerated wife) but given its gravitas and Crowe’s lackluster luster, perhaps they should have titled it The Next Three Days Will Not Affect This Movie’s Popularity Which Is Debatable To Begin With.  Moving on, we have an art film in limited release called Made In Dagenham which I’m guessing will get buzz later on down the road. It’s based on a Ford auto factory in Dagenham, England where the female employees  staged a walkout to protest  gender discrimination in 1968. That which is reportedly making this movie click is one Sally Hawkins, the actress who won the Golden Globe for Happy-Go-Lucky a few years back.  Not this weekend of course, but in the weeks to come I’m guessing you’ll hear more indie buzz for this little film, on account of its plucky and very enchanting heroine.  That’s what’s out there at the cineplex right now. On Monday we’ll be back examining  more of our PCA Nominees (we haven yet discussed Taylor Lautner!) But for now, have a good weekend and let us know what you think of HP and the Deathly Hallows!

Today’s poll.  Voice your choice in today’s featured poll and tell us which of these three wildly successful franchises is your absolute favorite:

1)    Harry Potter

2)    Lord of the Rings

3)    Pirates of the Caribbean

4)    Twilight

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