This week theme in our new releases is captivity, although one film is a bit darker take than the other.
1. Beauty and the Beast (Disney, 4,210 Theaters, 129 Minutes, Rated PG for some action violence, peril and frightening images, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer at press time: 69% Fresh [168 Reviews]): Disney’s animated version of this film is a classic, putting the studio in a difficult place. Doing a by-the-numbers remake would be superfluous, but making any major changes would be messing with perfection.
But since the live-action films Disney makes out of their animated fare make a lot of money, it was inevitable that this film would come into existence. And at 45 minutes longer a run time than the original, you know there were additions made to the story and/or pacing. But are they enough to make it worth putting down the Blu-Ray of the original and to head out into the theater?
The cast is first rate and there was a lot of buzz even before you-know-who was revealed to be you-know-what. We’ll see if this becomes as much of a classic as the original.
2. The Belko Experiment (BH Tilt, 1,350 Theaters, 88 Minutes, Rated R for strong bloody violence throughout, language including sexual references, and some drug use, Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer at press time: 46% Fresh [35 Reviews]): Before James Gunn started making films with talking raccoons and sentient trees, he came up through the Troma school of filmmaking, and that “horror with a satire undertone” style is on display in this film, which Gunn wrote.
Employees at the non-profit Belko Industries come to work one day to find the building sealed by metal blast doors in the middle of their shift. A voice comes over the intercom and tells the workers that unless they kill three of their co-workers, six of them will die at random via explosive implants lodged in their skulls. Chaos ensues.
The film has a good cast and would work if it acts as a satiric look at office politics of the day.
Next week, new release include not one, but two films adapting popular TV shows.