A veritable treasure trove awaits us all at the cineplex this weekend. Even if you’ve already seen The Help (which is expected to continue its winning ways and draw audiences from near and far) there are plenty of other new movies to catch. For starters, if you’re one of those people who’s vaguely puzzled about why they had to go and remake this or that film, you’ll be gobsmacked because there are actuallytwo huge remakes in theaters today. Romantic comedies featuring at least one scruffyhunky English dude? Check. Breathless intrigue for kids in a fun, well-cast vehicle that’s pre-proven (3 times over)? Absolutely.
All you need do is decide which target audience member you’d like to be. Let’s start with the first remake: Fright Night. Colin Farrell (who was hilarious in Horrible Bosses) plays a very bad vampire-next-door type, alongside Anton Yelchin and David Tennant (Dr.Who). Expect moody lighting, naïve victims, and lots of blood. Fright Night was directed by Craig Gillespie who himself has rather a fascinating resume, having directed both Lars and the Real Girl and Mr. Woodcock (go figure). The film looks scary and it’ll probably be quite popular among people who enjoy horror and the classmates who agree to accompany them. Even if it’s not really a “date”.
Next, we have the other remake — (although it’s not technically a remake because there are several “original” stories and this is just one of them) Conan the Barbarian. It’s the new one, and of course the old one is what first brought Arnold Schwarzenegger into the public consciousness. Here, said Barbarian is played by Jason Momoa in glorious, star-making 3D. Remember this dude with the flowing tresses and the muscles-for-days – he’s about to become really famous. Also, even though it won’t triumph at the box office, Conan will probably have an enormous shelf life on DVD – in addition to major kitsch/cult appeal.
Spy Kids: All the Time in the World in 4D will deliver, as its predecessors have, capers and espionage the whole family can stomach. Especially since you get Jessica Alba playing a retired spy who brings her brand new stepchildren into the fold to stop a terrible villain, played by Jeremy Piven. Joel McHale’s aboard too, so this one should be funny — if inane. This family-friendly franchise comes from not-necessarily-family- friendly-director Robert Rodriguez. Also there’s some question about the “4D” element – allegedly there is an “aroma” tie-in. If anyone sees it, let us know how it all works.
Finally we have my pick, One Day, the romantic comedy with Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess. Perhaps they should have titled it “One Date” but maybe that didn’t sound right – even though it might have been clearer. The conceit is this: a couple connect one day and then, over the ensuing years, we visit both of them (together and separately) on that very same date. I’m a little concerned about Anne Hathaway’s English accent and the whole thing seems predictable – although this in no way diminishes my desire to see the film. I’ll definitely check it out because I already saw The Help and this looks like the most fun someone can have this weekend that doesn’t involve blood, guts, prehistoric creatures, or Jessica Alba.
Voice your choice in today’s featured poll and tell us which of this weekend’s new movies you’re most excited to check out:
1) One Day
2) Spy Kids
3) Fright Night
4) Conan The Barbarian