Lighter Sides

Oh, Friday. It’s not enough that Hot Docs is underway and half a dozen other festivals still loom over me; you have to bring a new wave of movies to the megaplex.

Well, if I’m gonna be Friday’s bitch, I’m gonna go down fighting:

Darling Companion“: Lawrence Kasdan’s latest State of the Boomer picture — following “The Big Chill” and “Grand Canyon” — is a fuzzy-headed nothing from a comfortable, wealthy filmmaker. That’s a shame.

The Five Year Engagement“: Jason Segel, Emily Blunt, Chris Pratt, Alison Brie, Chris Parnell, Mindy Kaling, Rhys Ifans, Kevin Hart. Do you need more reasons to go? Okay, how about this: It’s one of the funniest, smartest and most satisfying romantic comedies in a very long time. Really, just go.

The Lady“: The last time Luc Besson made a movie about a real-life figure, we got “The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc”. Sadly, his biopic of Burmese crusader Aung San Suu Kyi is neither as crazy nor as entertaining. It’s just inert and respectable.

The Pirates! Band of Misfits“: Aardman’s latest is a proper stop-motion adventure involving, yes, pirates — and also Charles Darwin, Queen Victoria, a dodo and a monkey butler. You’ll laugh, you’ll adjust your 3D glasses, you’ll laugh some more.

“The Raven”: The 21st century gets the Edgar Allen Poe movie it deserves — a heavily fictionalized adventure in which John Cusack’s Poe teams up with a police officer to track a serial killer who may have been inspired by Poe’s own work. Andrew was not unentertained.

“Safe”: STATHAM SMASH! STATHAM PUNCH! But let’s be honest, that’s all we want Jason Statham to do these days. Rad approves.

“Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale”: Taiwan’s biggest movie to date was a two-part, five-hour historical epic. The version we’re getting here is compressed into a single film with half the running time. Phil says it’s not very good.

There, that’s everything. And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to attend an assembly …

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