This Week’s Theatrical Releases.

1. The Nanny Diaries (2,629 Theaters, Rated PG-13): A movie featuring a spunky young woman in a demeaning job answering to a demanding boss adapted from a popular chick lit novel? It’s no stretch of the imagination that the Weinstein Group is hoping that a little of last year’s Devil Wears Prada audience show up with this one.

And who can blame them? Devil Wears Prada was a surprise hit, making over $124 Million domestically. This proves there is an audience for this type of story.

This is a pretty big theater pull for a movie of this type. Will the investment in screens be justified? Will the Prada audiences be more turned off than attracted to the similarities?

The cast is first rate. I am a big fan of Scarlett Johansson. I keep waiting for her to get that one really good role that her acting chops deserve. Laura Linney is also a good actress. She’s no Meryl Streep, but she’s good. And I consider Chris Evans, next to Michael Chiklis, the best part of the Fantastic Four movies.

2. War (2,277 Theaters, Rated R): Most TV ads for this movie tell us that it is about a law enforcement officer seeking vengeance against and assassin. Maybe it’s just me, but I find it hard to tell which actor is playing which in those ads (although the trailer I’m including now makes it a little more clear.)

For the record, Jason Statham is playing an FBI agent and Jet Li is playing the assassin. I hope everyone can rest easier now. I know I will.

This movie seems to me to be like a glossy Grindhouse flick for the MTV generation. It’s a simple premise, shouldn’t be to hard to execute, and the final verdict on how good the movie is will be how awesome the inevitable final fight scene between Li and Statham is.

Both actors are skilled martial artists and it should take much effort to have the final confrontation be great. But it should last about 20 minutes, at least. Any less, and the movie is in trouble.

3. Mr. Bean’s Holiday (1,713 Theaters, Rated G): Yes, that rating is right. The movie is rated G. You do not see that all that often nowadays.

Ah, Bean. What can I say about Bean.

Can I say that I don’t like Bean?

Don’t get me wrong. I wasn’t the biggest Blackadder fan in the world but I did like what I saw of Rowan Atkinson in that. But there is just something about Bean that gives me a pain deep in the pit of my stomach.

And I realize that I am in the minority here. There are people out there who love, I mean looooove, Mr. Bean. They are treating this movie like Star Wars fans treated Episode One.

And I don’t know exactly why I don’t like Bean. I guess it’s just the whole “stupidity piled on top of stupidity” thing that really gets on my nerves. It’s funny up to a point, but, in my opinion, Bean goes well over that point. Well, different strokes for different folks.

4. Resurrecting the Champ (1,602 Theaters, Rated PG-13): This one is the tale of the two TV ads. I have seen two ads for this film on TV. One plays it as a tear-jerking, Oscar-caliber, life-reaffirming underdog story. The other, plays it as an Oscar-caliber, Shattered Glass-style tale of journalistic malfeasance, that what ever Samuel L. Jackson’s story is, Josh Harnett’s character made up to get ahead.

Which one is it? Well, it is based on a true story. If you want to spoil the movie, you could probably find out after about a half hour of googling.

Either way, it has the look of a movie that is shouting “Hey! Oscar voters! Look at me!” Not saying that’s a bad thing. I think Samuel L. Jackson, when he’s not making stupid decisions in choosing roles, can be a great actor. I still argue that he was robbed of an Oscar for his role in Pulp Fiction.

Another point about this movie, Cold Case’s Kathryn Morris appears to be playing Josh Hartnett’s wife or girlfriend in this one, even though, per IMDB.com, she is at least 9 years older than him. This is refreshing because most times in Hollywood, it’s the other way around.

Now, on to the predictions.

This was what I predicted as last week’s Top 5:

  1. Superbad
  2. Invasion
  3. Rush Hour 3
  4. The Bourne Ultimatum
  5. The Simpsons Movie

And this is how it actually was:

  1. Superbad
  2. Rush Hour 3
  3. The Bourne Ultimatum
  4. The Simpsons Movie
  5. Invasion.

1 for 4. I had all five right, I just made a mistake on how well Invasion would do. This makes me 8 for 15 after three weeks and brings my prediction percentage down to 53%.

It will probably go down even lower this week. Here are my picks.

  1. Superbad
  2. War
  3. Nanny Diaries
  4. Rush Hour 3
  5. The Bourne Ultimatum.

It’s a tricky week this week. Any of the movies could be in the top 5. And, while I personally don’t think so, any of them could be number one. And it is quite possible none of them would make the top 5. So my prediction this week is just a stab in the dark.

What do you think?

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About William Gatevackes 1937 Articles
William is cursed with the shared love of comic books and of films. Luckily, this is a great time for him to be alive. His writing has been featured on Broken Frontier.com, PopMatters.com and in Comics Foundry magazine.
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