Attack of the Unwanted Sequels

Hey, look, everybody! Movies! And some of them are looking awfully familiar …

City of Life and Death“: Lu Chuan’s unflinching, uncompromising re-creation of the rape of Nanking opens for a brief run at the Projection Booth in advance of its DVD release next Tuesday. It’s the sort of film that should be experienced with an audience, if only so you’ll have other people available to comfort you when it ends.

“Dirty Girl”: Juno Temple — who was sort of amazing in William Friedkin’s twisted TIFF hit “Killer Joe” — plays a prickly but compassionate skank who takes a gay teen (Jeremy Dozier) on a redemptive road trip in Abe Sylvia’s TIFF 2010 oddity. Susan enjoyed it, with reservations.

Down the Road Again“: In which Don Shebib almost literally parades the corpse of his seminal 1970 drama around for cheap sentiment and general embarrassment. I don’t know how else to say it: You should not be paying money to see this, for it is atrocious.

“Johnny English Reborn”: And speaking of sequels the world doesn’t need, here’s Rowan Atkinson reviving his secret-agent character for another go-round. Phil took the bullet on that one.

Paranormal Activity 3“: Now with even more subwoofer activity! “Catfish” directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman take the camcorder-horror franchise for a spin, and we all find out that more is less. Oh, and the trailer is more faithful to the VHS conceit than the actual movie.

“The Three Musketeers 3D”: Swords! Corsets! Milla Jovovich! Paul W.S. Anderson ropes his wife into another action movie in this period adventure, which Rad finds superior to “Drive”. And sure, every Ryan Gosling movie can be improved by equipping him with a rapier and a hat with a feather sticking out of it, but beyond that I really don’t see the comparison.

“Weibo’s War”: Earlier this year, NOW’s Hot Docs cover story focused on David York’s thorny study of Weibo Ludwig, whose campaign of resistance against the Canadian energy conglomerate he blames for his poisoned lands (not without reason) may well fit your definition of eco-terrorism. But that doesn’t mean he’s not right. Susan remains fascinated.

“The Women on the Sixth”: A 1960s family man (Fabrice Lucihini) finds himself attracted to one of his maids (Natalia Verbeke) in Philippe Le Guay’s romance, which Susan finds more than a little hard to swallow.

Oh, and my friend Mark Slutsky wrote and produced a comedy called “Peepers” that’s playing a limited run at the Royal this weekend. If you’re interested in a modestly budgeted Canadian farce built around awkward voyeurism — and really, who isn’t? — you should definitely check it out. Showtimes are here.

Leave a Reply