This Weekend At The Movies (Sept. 30-Oct. 2)! Plus My Thoughts On Tucker & Dale Vs. Evil!

TUCKER AND DALE VS. EVIL

(MP’s Pick of the Week)

(Limited Release)

Directed by Eli Craig.  Starring Alan Tudyk, Tyler Labine, Jesse Moss and Katrina Bowden.

Tucker and Dale are two best friends on vacation at their dilapidated mountain house and are mistaken for murderous backwoods hillbillies by a group of obnoxious, preppy college kids.  When one of the students gets separated from her friends, the boys try to lend a hand, but things go terribly awry and as the misunderstanding between the kids and Tucker and Dale grows, so does the body count.

I’ve been wanting to see this film for some time now and I was fortunate enough to see this movie last night at a midnight screening.  I’m a big fan of both Alan Tudyk and Tyler Labine and was really excited to see these two together on screen in a horror comedy.  I’m happy to say that the result is a lot of fun and will have you laughing out loud numerous times.  The movie tells the hillbilly horror story we’re all familiar with but instead of the hillbillies being unintelligent, sadistic murderers, they are friendly and misunderstood guys who, through a series of accidents, are believed to be ruthless killers.  Tudyk and Labine play their characters perfectly and really sell their earnest characters’ reactions so well.  The ways the college kids die combined with how Tucker and Dale are made to look like they are involved in their deaths make for some of the more fun sequences in the film.  The movie gathers momentum pretty quickly and escalates to ridiculous hilarity before slowing down about halfway through the movie.  Despite a little loss of momentum, the movie remains funny all the way to the end and it proves to be an excellent entry into the horror comedy genre.  The film is playing in select theaters, and is also available on Video On Demand, so I highly encourage you to seek it out.  If you are a fan of horror comedies or are fans of Alan Tudyk and/or Tyler Labine, you really cannot miss out on this movie.  I’m very happy with the movie overall and can’t wait until I can get it on blu-ray to watch it again.

DREAM HOUSE

Directed by Jim Sheridan.  Starring Daniel Craig, Rachel Weisz, Naomi Watts, Marton Csokas and Elias Koteas.

Successful publisher Will Atenton quit a job in New York City to relocate his wife, Libby, and his two girls to a quaint New England town.  But as they settle into their new life, they discover their perfect home was the murder scene of a mother and her children.  The entire city believes it was at the hands of the husband who survived.  When Will investigates the tragedy, his only lead comes from Ann, a neighbor, who was close to the family that died.  As Will and Ann piece together the disturbing puzzle, they discover that the story of the last man to leave Will’s dream house will be just as horrifying to the one who came next.

I want to say that I’m almost 100% sure that this is a horror film but given that it is directed by Jim Sheridan, who has a long career in dramas, and that on IMDB it is listed as a mystery thriller, I’m a little hesitant to claim outright that it is horror.  Regardless, it is something that I’m interested in seeing.  I’ve tried to avoid the trailers for the film as I read that they show too much of the film.  I haven’t heard anything review-wise regarding it but I think I’m just going to go into it without influence of critical reviews.  We’ll see if that pays off or not.

50/50

Directed by Jonathan Levine.  Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, Anna Kendrick, Bryce Dallas Howard and Anjelica Huston.

Adam is a 27 year old writer of radio programs and is diagnosed with a rare form of spinal cancer.  With the help of his best friend, his mother and a young therapist at the cancer center, Adam learns what and who the most important things in his life are.

This movie looks like it could be pretty good and Joseph Gordon-Levitt is an interesting actor to watch.  Due to the melancholic tone of the film, I’m not exactly clamoring to see the movie but I am definitely up for watching it eventually.  It’s just not a priority for me at the moment as my priorities lie in the horror genre as we approach the Halloween season.

WHAT’S YOUR NUMBER?

Directed by Mark Mylod.  Starring Anna Faris, Chris Evans, Ari Graynor, Blythe Danner, Joel McHale, Chris Pratt, Zachary Quinto, Thomas Lennon, Aziz Ansari, Martin Freeman, Andy Samberg and Ed Begley, Jr.

A woman looks back at the past twenty men she’s had relationships with in her life and wonders if one of them might be her one true love.

I think Anna Faris can be quite funny and Chris Evans is a versatile actor who can be pretty funny in his own right, so the two could potentially play off each other’s sensibilities pretty well and make for a fun time at the movies.  Out of the romantic comedy options we’ve had this year, besides Friends With Benefits, this is the only other one that I can remember that has sparked my interest.  After I found out that both Joel McHale and Chris Pratt are in the movie, though I’m sure in minor roles, that just added more to the appeal of the film.  This is probably something I will watch when it hits blu-ray but I definitely want to see it.

HIGHER GROUND

(Limited Release)

Directed by Vera Farmiga.  Starring Vera Farmiga, Joshua Leonard, Dagmara Domincyk, Taissa Farmiga and John Hawkes.

Higher Ground depicts the landscape of a tight-knit spiritual community thrown off-kilter when one of their own begins to question her faith.  Inspired by screenwriter Carolyn S. Briggs’ memoir, This Dark World, the film tells the story of a thoughtful woman’s struggles with belief, love, and trust – in human relationships as well as in God.

Vera Farmiga makes her directorial debut with this film.  From the trailer, it looks like Farmiga has chosen a film rich in character to show off her directing chops.  I can’t say that the film appeals to me directly as I’m not very spiritual but I like Farmiga as an actress and am curious to see how she handles a film from behind the camera.

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