It’s Oscar weekend, and that means the Farrelly Brothers are very, very smart filmmakers. The connection? Traditionally, no one releases big films in the run-up (or stroll up, this year) to the Academy Awards, if they want to get any kind of critical notoriety. Oh, if it’s a silly or terrifying movie that’s different. But on Oscar weekend itself, few will dare to take on Hollywood’s Biggest Back Pat Party.
Unless you’re the guys behind There’s Something About Mary and Dumb & Dumber. And other super-tasteful films that appeal to a certain crowd of 18- to 35-year old men who wouldn’t watch the Oscars if you paid them. And you’ve got a brand new movie out called Hall Pass. Which actually looks genuinely funny. Plus, you decide that it shouldn’t just be for the guys even though there’s a raunchy component. You’d like to get the girls in on the fun too, so you cast Owen Wilson and Jason Sudeikis – which means you can probably woo the date-night crowd (and maybe even the Date Night crowd). Here’s the idea behind Hall Pass: a married guy gets special dispensation to go and have some fun – extramaritally – with another lady. And because it’s a movie he cannot go out and get into trouble without his best buddy. Then of course his wife also hops on the infidelity bandwagon and, well, we can guess what kinds of shenanigans ensue. The point is that I cannot imagine any other genre (or filmmakers ) better suited to luring anyone (who doesn’t love an awards show) away to the movies this weekend.
Also in theaters, custom-made for Nicolas Cage fans, we have Drive Angry 3D. Perhaps you saw their Super Bowl commercial, which pretty much delivers all you need to know. If you missed it, just think Cage. Amber Heard. A kidnapped child. A furious father. Supercharged automobiles. Enormous firearms. And all of it in bone-crunching, expletive-spewing, shower-foregoing 3D glory.
Then Sunday we get to watch the Oscars on ABC and see a) if putting Anne Hathaway and James Franco at the helm was a good idea, b) if Melissa Leo did too much damage to herself with an ill-advised promotional campaign, and finally c) if the UK’s King’s Speech can unseat the US’ very popular Social Network. More later, and have a great weekend.
1) Drive Angry 3D
2) Gnomeo and Juliet
3) Hall Pass