Kam's Kapsules: Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun
For movies opening June 5, 2009
BIG BUDGET FILMS
The Hangover (R for sexuality, nudity, drug and alcohol abuse and pervasive profanity) “What Happens in Vegas” comedy about three friends (Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis) of the groom-to-be (Justin Bartha) who throw a wild bachelor party in a suite at Caesar’s Palace only to have their pal disappear without a trace the day before the wedding. With Heather Graham, Mike Tyson, Jeffrey Tambor and Dr. Ken Jeong.
Land of the Lost (PG-13 for profanity, sexuality, crude humor and a drug reference) Sci-fi comedy abut a trio of explorers (Will Ferrell, Danny McBride and Anna Friel) forced to survive by their wits after being sucked though a space-time vortex into a parallel universe filled with dinosaurs and other strange creatures. Cast includes Jorma Taccone, Douglas Tait and Bobb’e J. Thompson.
My Life in Ruins (PG-13 for sexuality) My Big Fat Greek Vacation. Nia Vardalos stars as a jaded, middle-aged American of Greek ancestry who gets her groove back while working as a tour guide in Athens when she falls in love with a local bus driver (Alexis Georgoulis). Cast includes Richard Dreyfuss, Rachel Dratch and Ian Ogilvy.
INDEPENDENT & FOREIGN FILMS
24 City (Unrated) Modernization mockumentary, set in Sichuan Province, shot from the diverse perspectives of nine interviewees representing three generations of Chinese whose lives are affected in different ways by the demolition of a military factory in Chengdu to make way for a complex of luxury apartments. Cast includes Joan Chen, Tao Zhao and Liping Lu. (In Mandarin and Shanghainese with subtitles)
The Art of Being Straight (Unrated) Homoerotic comedy about a ladies man (Jesse Rosen) who breaks up with his girlfriend only to end up in bed with his boss (Johnny Ray) after taking an entry-level position at an L.A. ad agency. With Jim Dineen, Rachel Castillo and Jared Grey.
Away We Go (R for profanity and sexuality) Road comedy chronicling the misadventures of an expecting couple (Maya Rudolph and Jon Krasinski) traveling around the country to find the perfect place to put down roots and start a family. Ensemble includes Maggie Gyllenhaal, Allison Janney and Catherine O’Hara.
Ball Don’t Lie (Unrated) Hoop dreams drama about a 17-year-old white kid (Grayson Boucher) raised in the ‘hood by a prostitute (Rosanna Arquette) whose only hope of escaping the ghetto rests with making it to the NBA with the help of his cute girlfriend (Kim Hidalgo). Cast includes Nick Cannon, Melissa Leo, Harold Perrineau and Ludacris for street cred.
Downloading Nancy (Unrated) Romantic thriller about a suicidal housewife (Maria Bello) who hires a hit man (Jason Patric) over the internet to kill her, only to fall in love with the handsome stranger when she meets him in person. With Rufus Sewell as the odd man out.
Herb and Dorothy (Unrated) Salt-of-the-Earth bio-pic about the Vogels, a modest married couple with an eye for art who stupefied the experts by amassing a priceless contemporary collection containing over 4,000 pieces on the salaries of a postal clerk and a librarian.
Kassim the Dream (Unrated) Boxing documentary chronicles the career of Junior Middleweight Champ Kassim Ouma who was pressed into service as a child soldier by rebels in his native Uganda from the age of six until he finally sought political asylum in the U.S. at the age of 18.
Seraphine (Unrated) Warts-and-all bio-pic based on the life of Seraphine de Senlis (Yolande Moreau), the French maid-turned-folk artist who came to fame between the First and Second World Wars before dying friendless and penniless in obscurity on the psychiatric ward of an old folks home in 1942. (In French and German with subtitles)
Sugisball (Unrated) Ensemble drama, set in Estonia, explores the lonely existence of six jaded souls all living in the same impersonal housing development built during the Soviet Era. Cast includes Rain Tolk, Taavi Eelmaa, Juhan Ulfsak, Maarja Jakobson, Iris Persson and Mirtel Pohla. (In Estonian with subtitles)
Tennessee (R for profanity) Dysfunctional family drama about two brothers (Adam Rothenberg and Ethan Peck) who pick up a truck stop waitress (Mariah Carey) with an abusive husband (Lance Reddick) while en route from New Mexico to Tennessee where they hope to reconcile with their long-estranged father.
Unmistaken Child (Unrated) “Hello Dalai” documentary, set in 2001, retraces the worldwide search of a Buddhist monk for his new master, a boy under four years of age born with the reincarnated soul of his dearly-departed guru. (In English, Tibetan, Nepali and Hindi)