A Codger, an Ogre and MacGruber Walk Into a Bar …

Action budgets aren't what they used to beHow can you doubt that summertime is upon us? There’s a “Shrek” movie opening! And lots of other stuff, too, which you may well want to check out after reading the review roundup below …

The Cry of the Owl“: Creepy aerospace engineer Paddy Considine stalks lonely, isolated Julia Stiles; she stalks him right back, which he finds disconcerting. There’s a really interesting idea in there, but writer-director Jamie Thraves does nothing with it.

Harry Brown“: Michael Caine kills a bunch of hoodies in this laughable English thriller, which feels more like a clip reel of “Death Wish” moments than anything else. Also, it takes Sean Harris, the wiry villain of the “Red Riding” series, and turn him into Gollum. What a waste.

“Kites”: Bollywood director Anurag Basu tries to conquer the American box-office with an epic romantic thriller set in Las Vegas, with dialogue in English and Spanish. Rad ain’t buying it.

“Leslie, My Name is Evil”: Reg Harkema’s Godard obsession reaches its logical conclusion with this scabrous protest against the bourgeois values of 1960s America, as symbolized by a clean-cut Manson juror (Gregory Smith) smitten by one of Charlie’s homicidal angels (Kristen Hager). Rad wasn’t too impressed, either — though Jason’s a fan.

MacGruber“: If loving Jorma Taccone and Will Forte’s salute to the cheesy ’80s action movies they spent most of the ’90s watching on TBS is wrong, I don’t want to be right. Also, I think it’s time we take another look at “Hot Rod”. Clearly, these films belong together.

Mid-August Lunch“: Gianni di Gregorio, one of the screenwriters of “Gomorrah”, makes his directorial debut with this tiny little nothing of a movie, playing a middle-aged Italian who spends a holiday weekend in the company of four little old ladies. In the good old days, this would have played for a year at the Park or the International; now, we’ll be lucky if it gets a two-week run. So catch it as soon as you can.

Shrek Forever After“: DreamWorks’ animated series rebounds after the regrettable third outing with a darker, smarter adventure that feels very much like the last call for the franchise. And now Mike Myers will have to find somewhere else to be intermittently Scottish.

There, that’s everything. I feel strangely full.

8 thoughts on “A Codger, an Ogre and MacGruber Walk Into a Bar …”

  1. Nice piece on LOST too, BTW.

    I foresee a last scene as being Jack and Unlocke sitting on the beach, playing backgammon, Jack has white pebbles, Unlocke with Black pebbles.

    Last line, Unlocke to Jack: “God I really wish I could kill you…”

    It would make sense, given their rivalry and differing philosophies throughout the series…and don’t even get me started on the John Locke inference…

  2. I had thought of something similar, but that presumes Smokey is still stuck as the Locke-ness Monster, and that may no longer be the case after last week’s events.

    Y’know, Jack’s never really confronted his father …

  3. Where be this Lost piece?

    My own stupid theory about the Lost finale is very similar to the above, but with an incredibly lame twist that I’m praying is not the case. It’s in my blog today, linked from my name, as if anyone cares.

  4. @ Josh — I was saving the “Lost” piece for tomorrow, to tie into the finale, but you can find it on my Twitter feed. Sheesh, this is getting complicated.

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