1. Scary Movie V (The Weinstein Group/Dimension Films, 3,402 Theaters, 85 Minutes, Rated PG-13):From the “are-they-still-making-those-films” category, we have this, the fifth entry in the Scary Movie franchise.
Not that the original was anything near high art, but by this point the films resemble Ikea furniture. Taken off-the-wall media celebrities (Snoop Dogg…er.. Lion, Mike Tyson, Audrina Patridge, Kendra Wilkinson), people at the start of their careers (Ashley Tisdale, Sarah Hyland), B-level comedians (Katt Williams, Molly Shannon, Darrell Hammond) and assemble them into a flimsy plot that exists only to lamely parody recent films (everything from Black Swan to Inception [how timely!]) and pop culture happenings (50 Shades of Grey and Charlie Sheen and Lindsay Lohan’s real-life problems). Throw it all on a screen and see who pays money to see it.
For me, it’s telling that this is the first Scary Movie not to feature Anna Faris. Supposedly, pregnancy kept her away. Yeah, right.
2. 42 (Warner Brothers, 3,003 Theaters, 128 Minutes, Rated PG-13): The Major League Baseball season has just begun, and baseball fans can see all different skin colors and nationalities playing for their favorite teams. Of course, every true baseball fan know it wasn’t always this way. For the first 60-odd years, Major League Baseball was a white man’s game. Then came Jackie Robinson.
Robinson’s story is so captivating that this is not the first time it has been adapted into a dramatic form. His life story or elements from it have been made into three TV movies, a Broadway Musical, and the 1950 biopic The Jackie Robinson Story where Robinson played himself.
Of course, the story bears repeating because it tells us so much about prejudice and ways to stand up to it. Unfortunately, those are issues that we as a people still have to deal with today.
The films not only arrives close to the start of the current baseball season, but also the 66th anniversary of Robinson’s debut with the Dodgers, which is celebrated in baseball with every member of every team wearing Robinson’s uniform number (the titular 42) for one day.