Movies: Saving Winslet, Damon, Law, Gwyneth, Fishburne…

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Who doesn’t like a short week?

If it’s movies you want, we have plenty of them afoot this weekend. Okay…who wants to get scared out of their minds and watch Gwyneth die early on (it’s in the trailer – I’m not spoiling anything) from the Contagion that threatens to ruin the world?

This movie will undoubtedly be very popular and it boasts quite a cast. (Wouldn’t you wanna work for Steven Soderbergh if he called and you were an actor?) In terms of sheer star wattage and volume, how about Kate Winslet, Matt Damon, Jude Law, Laurence Fishburne, John Hawkes, Marion Cotillard – just to name a few. The movie sounds terrifying because it’s all about the outbreak of a deadly disease that spreads long before anyone can get anyone else to a hospital, much less say “you don’t look so good…” This one will do very well indeed what with its good reviews, its big, likeable cast, its creepy but oh-so-possible subject matter, and it’s extremely cool director. That would be Stephen Soderbergh, who is known for everything from Sex Lies and Videotape to Erin Brokovich to Oceans Eleven, Twelve and Thirteen.

Want that same type of breathless excitement but also crave a ringside seat for brutal mano a mano combat?  We have just the ticket. For the MMA set (that’s Mixed Martial Arts) there’s a movie called Warrior starring Tom Hardy and Nick Nolte. I’m guessing Nolte’s playing a former, washed up something or other who parses out occasional bits of gruff wisdom – but I can’t be sure.Tom Hardy plays Nolte’s son who somehow winds up facing off in the “MMA fight of a lifetime” against another former champion MMA guy – who also happens to be his own brother. This film will have its own built-in crowd, and it’s likely to lure many, many new viewers to the physical specimen otherwise known as Tom Hardy, whom you’ll remember from Inception. Most notable however is the fact that Hardy’s due to star as the very bad guy Bane in the newest Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises. So this alone should sell tickets.

Finally we have a very silly SNL-type number opening in theaters called Bucky Larson: Born To Be a Star. This is one of Adam Sandler’s latest productions – only he’s not the star. Nick Swardson’s the bucktoothed young man who moves to Los Angeles in hot pursuit of a career in porn (once he discovers this was his parents’ legacy). You might be able to guess what happens there, and exactly the kinds of body part jokes that get tossed around throughout. Ascribe any popularity for this movie to its cast, which includes Don Johnson, Christina Ricci, and Adam Sandler. That is, if it’s at all popular. Which is unlikely.

The money’s on Contagion;  with the big cast, director and alarmist plot, how could it not be? In fact, it may give The Help a run for its money. That’s okay …it’s only fair that other films should share the summer spotlight.

Today’s poll:

Voice your choice in today’s featured poll and tell us which of this weekend’s new movies you’re most likely to see first:

1)    Warrior

2)    Contagion

3)    Bucky Larson: Born To Be  A Star

4)    The Debt 

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