What’s a good girl (Ginnifer Goodwin) to do after she beds her BFF (Kate Hudson)’s fiance — and decides she wants him for herself? That’s the premise of this sitcomlike romantic comedy (based on Emily Giffin‘s book). Goodwin appeals as sweet Rachel, but Hudson overacts as self-centered Darcy, who is so unsympathetic the audience wonders how this friendship has survived since childhood. The story also lags, with several filler scenes, not enough tension and too many flashbacks. As for the lawyer both gals love, Colin Egglesfield‘s Dex comes off as an earnest, cardboard dreamboat. One redeeming factor: John Krasinski delights as Rachel’s best male bud. The comic actor gives a lift to his scenes, including a beach badminton match that exposes some secrets — and shows how much sharper the movie could have been.
“I still got it!” Courteney Cox proclaims in this “screamake” of the popular ’90s slasher series. And she does! The sitcom star is the main attraction as Gale, aggressive ex-newswoman, bored wife of plodding sheriff Dewey (a comically sad-sack David Arquette) and bestselling chronicler of those gruesome Woodsboro massacres. On the anniversary of the slayings, victim turned self-help author Sidney (a sharp Neve Campbell) returns to the scene of the crime for a book signing.
She reunites with her cousin (Emma Roberts) — one of an entirely new generation of quick-witted potential targets. As nemesis Ghostface shishkebabs cops, teens and bystanders in rapid succession, Sidney must reboot her inner survivor and overcome her why-me-again self pity. The series was once considered cutting-edge: ironic about horror-movie conventions yet jump-in-your-seat scary. The only nod to the passage of time seems to be the addition of texts, tweets and webcams. But the entertaining Scream formula still works: When there’s a big shiny knife, the action never gets dull.
Vibrant and as zippy as a kindergartner on a sugar rush, this 3-D animated flick — from the Ice Age series’ codirector — will certainly please kids, even if adults may find it a little snoozy. A domesticated pet macaw named Blu (voice of Jesse Eisenberg, doing his awkward-but-adorable shtick) jets from his comfy Minnesota home to exotic Rio de Janeiro and meets the last female of his species, Jewel (Anne Hathaway). Their goal: Save their line of birds from extinction. While the story lacks suspense — and Ice Age‘s antic zingers — the film packs in vocal talent. Plus, a few infectious, Latin-flavored musical numbers spice things up.
Russell Brand plays Arthur, a lovable alcoholic heir in NYC best explained by his aging nanny (a tart Helen Mirren): “He’s merely shaped like an adult.” The spoiled billionaire gets a wake-up call when his chilly mother threatens to freeze his trust fund. Her ultimatum: Arthur must marry domineering social climber Susan (a deliciously deceitful Jennifer Garner) to keep the cash.
Arthur accepts the offer — but then immediately falls for a free-spirited tour guide (Greta Gerwig). The hugely talented Brand nails his witty one-liners, such as when he says Susan’s lips make her look “like a sexy clown.” Garner embraces her inner bitch as his comic foil, and Gerwig (Greenberg) has a refreshing honesty that suits her softhearted working girl.
When the plot goes bigger than Brand’s personality, the movie runs off-course (a scene in which Susan’s contractor dad threatens Arthur by shoving his face toward a table saw is just uncomfortable). But largely, this is a laugh-out-loud romp — and the funnyman’s best screen role to date
Us Rating: *
In this dreadfully unfunny stoner flick, two medieval princes (James Franco, Danny McBride) journey to rescue a virgin (Zooey Deschanel) from an evil wizard. En route, they confront — then befriend — a feisty archer (Natalie Portman) bent on vengeance. The cerebral Oscar winner (who filmed this before Black Swan) bungles the broad comedy, enunciating annoyingly in Shakespearean diction. And Franco sports his usual squinty-eyed smirk. Consistent with the title’s lame pun, the humor is painfully low: McBride spends the movie’s climax wearing a beast’s penis on a string around his neck. Groan