1. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Fox, 3,522 Theaters, 127 minutes, Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of fantasy action/violence and peril, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer rating at press time: 63% Fresh [124 Reviews]): Jake’s grandfather used to tell him fantastic stories of children with superhuman abilities. Jake thought these were just fairy tales until a family tragedy brings him to a hidden isle with an unusual boarding school. There, Jake finds out the stories his grandfather told him were true. But if the heroic children are true, then so must be the terrifying villains too.
Like I said at the beginning of the month, it might be easy to write this film off as a “goth” version of the X-Men. However, the film is written by Jane Goldman, a great screenwriter known for comic book films such as Stardust, the Kick-Ass films, and Matthew Vaughn’s X-Films. It is directed by Tim Burton, the master of the quirky, weird and macabre, which this story just oozes. Both are an excellent fit for the material.
The reviews might keep it from joining the ranks of the “must see” I claimed it could be back then, but the talent involved would make it interesting to watch.
2. Deepwater Horizon (Lionsgate/Summitt, 3,259 Theaters, 107 Minutes, Rated PG-13 for prolonged intense disaster sequences and related disturbing images, and brief strong language, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer rating at press time: 81% Fresh [144 Reviews]): When the Deepwater Horizon exploded off the Gulf of Mexico back in 2010, most of the attention was place on the copious amounts of oil that was released into the Gulf and the enourmous ecological disaster it caused. Little attention was paid to the 126 people who were on the rig, 11 of whom did not make it out alive.
This film appears to focus these people and the accident itself, focusing on the explosion and the attempts of the crew to minimize the spill while staying alive.
I’m not a big fan of real-life disaster movies. Yes, it is ready-made drama featuring stories the audience already knows, but I eventually come to the realization is that the last few moments of a real person’s life are being showed to me for my entertainment. That leaves me uncomfortable.
3. Masterminds (Relativity, 3,042 Theaters, 94 Minutes, Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, some language and violence, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer rating at press time: 43% Fresh [44 Reviews]): On the night of October 4th, David Ghantt stole $17.3 million dollars from his employers, Loomis, Fargo and Company Armored Car services. Since the money all belonged to banks, it was considered the second biggest bank robbery in history.
That would be enough for a pretty entertaining movie there. It had all the elements for a classic heist film–a conspiracy of untrustworthy individuals, going on the lam, one conspirator trying to kill another. But since it took place in the Charlotte, North Carolina and the planner lived in the small towns outside the city, it became a joke of sorts as how the dumb hillbillies could pull off such a heist.
That joke is continued in this film, which treats the caper as a wacky comedy. It is being directed by Jared Hess, how has become the go-to director for films featuring stupid people doing stupid things weirdly. The was a film FBOL head honcho Rich Drees looked forward to at the beginning of the month. Was he right?