1. The Accountant (Warner Brothers, 3,332 Theaters, 128 Minutes, Rated R for strong violence and language throughout, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer at press time: 48% fresh [90 Reviews]): I believe I might owe you an apology. I listed this film as one of the fall films to look forward to last month, but I really didn’t know that much about it.
I was going by a synopsis of the film, where it presented the film as an autistic accountant who worked for some dangerous people but was trying to make a fresh start. I thought that would have been a pretty interesting premise for a thriller.
I should have watched the trailer because he is in fact an autistic assassin accountant. That turns what I thought was an interesting premise on its ear, and not in a good way. Now, its a conventional action movie with a quirky twist. That’s much less impressive.
2. Kevin Hart: What Now? (Universal, 2,568 Theaters, 96 Minutes, Rated R for some sexual material, and language throughout, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer at press time: 81% fresh [26 Reviews]): In the hierarchy of stand-up comedy films, first comes the Comedy Central special, then the HBO special, then the theatrical concert film.
Not every comedian gets to the second rung of the ladder, let alone the third. This is Kevin Hart’s third stand-up concert film. That should tell you a lot about his talent and popularity.
The film captures a sold-out performance by Hart and Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field (you know, home to the Philadelphia Eagles) interspersed with what appears to be a James Bond-like caper.
3. Max Steel (Open Road Films, 2,034 Theaters, 92 Minutes, Rated PG-13 for some sci-fi action violence, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer at press time: N/A [It has not been submitted to critics for review]): When I was a kid, there was a big controversy about cartoons based on toy lines. Concerned parents were up about what they saw as 30-minute commercials for action figures. I was a kid so I didn’t care. I just wanted to see He-Man and G.I. Joe.
In retrospect, I probably should have cared more.
Mattel, surely seeing the success Hasbro has had in bringing it’s toys to the big screen, is making a go of it on the big screen with this film, the tale of a genetically altered teen who uses his superpowers for good.
The concept has had some success on the small screen and direct-to-video markets. However, not being screened for critics is a bad sign.