1. Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (Warner Brothers, 4,125 Theaters, 146 Minutes, Rated PG-13): And comes the end of an era. I’m sure the last book of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter franchise was too big for just one book, but I am sure that the tome was split in to two films to delay the inevitable end of the Harry Potter phenomenon for at least a few months.
Things look bleak for Harry. Voldemort has all but won and has begun hunting Harry and his friends. It is a race against time as Harry and his allies try to destroy the base of Lord Voldemort’s power before it’s too late.
If you have been following the franchise from the beginning, then you know how it will all end. Supposedly, there will be an added scene in this film that was not in the books that might cause a bit of controversy. I’d love to see the reaction when that hits.
Opens tonight at midnight.
2. The Next Three Days (Lionsgate, 2,564 Theaters, 122 Minutes, Rated PG-13): Otherwise known as the sacrifical lamb to the Harry Potter juggernaut. Might be counter programing if the same demographic that would attend this film wouldn’t also be interested in Harry Potter.
This film is a case of “which ad should we believe.” The first ads make this film seem like it was a movie about a man going through legal channels to prove his wife’s innocence. Later ads make it seem that it is a breakout caper where the man devises a plan to free his wife from jail. It will probably be more of the latter, which would make it more unique but less plausible.
Good people are involved all around, but I can’t really see it making much of a dent at the box office.
If Harry Potter was going to get any non-technical nominations, and it would be a stretch, they would probably wait until the last film arrives, like they did with Lord of the Rings. The Next Three Days is written and directed by Oscar fave Paul Haggis and a number of the cast have been nominated in the past. The subject matter doesn’t seem Oscar worthy, but we could be surprised.
Of the limited release films, Made in Dagenham, the true-life story of labor unrest in a British Ford automobile plant, might have a chance at an acting nod for one of it’s pedigreed cast (Sally Hawkins, Bob Hoskins, Miranda Richardson).