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The PopMatters Summer 2012 Movie Preview (June)

by Bill Gibron

1 May 2012

 

15 June


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Rock of Ages

Director: Adam Shankman
Cast: Julianne Hough, Diego Boneta, Russell Brand, Paul Giamatti, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Malin Akerman, Mary J. Blige, Alec Baldwin, Tom Cruise
15 June
Rock of Ages

As one of many mindless Broadway experiences based on questionable source material (in this case, ‘80s hair metal), this big screen adaptation had little juice—that it, until Tom Cruise signed on to play the charismatic frontman, Stacee Jaxx. Suddenly, interest shifted from the project to the possibility of seeing the 40-something-year-old strutting his rock and roll stuff onstage. He even sings Bon Jovi’s hit “Wanted Dead or Alive”. Everything else about this populist production sounds rote and redundant (oddball score aside). In fact, it feels like the illegitimate child of Poison and Christina Aguilera’s awful Burlesque.

 

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That’s My Boy

Director: Sean Anders
Cast: Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Leighton Meester, James Caan, Susan Sarandon, Ciara
15 June
That’s My Boy

Adam Sandler is clearly concerned about his two young daughters’ college education future. Why else would he take his considerable comic talents and prostitute them out for something as awful looking as this. Granted, it’s not as bad as the drag disaster Jack and Jill, but even the sight of a sullen Andy Samberg can’t stop the stink of stupidity. The story centers on a teen father, now estranged from his son, who crashes his upcoming nupitals, trying to rekindle some kind of familial bond. Of course, Dad is as crass and crude as they come, arrested adolescence at its most smarmy. Sad, really.

 

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The Woman in the Fifth

Director: Pawel Pawlikowski
Cast: Ethan Hawke, Kristin Scott Thomas, Joanna Kulig, Samir Guesmi
15 June
The Woman in the Fifth

A writer (Ethan Hawke) flees the US for Paris when a scandal destroys his life. Soon, he finds himself on the outskirts of the city, guarding a dilapidated hotel and striking up a romance with the mysterious Margit (Kristin Scott-Thomas). The twist? She may be a murderer. Based on a book by Douglas Kennedy and helmed by the Polish-born Pawel Pawlikowski, the concept sounds intriguing, and rumor has it that the performances are excellent. Still, it all comes across like something that would appear promising on paper, but weak in actual cinematic translation. We’ll have to wait and see.

 

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Your Sister’s Sister

Director: Lynn Shelton
Cast: Emily Blunt, Rosemarie DeWitt, Mark Duplass, Mike Birbiglia
15 June
Your Sister’s Sister

For some reason, June seems to be Mark Duplass’ month. He appears in Safety Not Guaranteed, People Like Us, and this romantic drama about a man still devastated by the death of his brother. Offered a chance to stay at his best friend Iris’ remote cabin, he ends up running into her sister Hannah. Then his gal pal herself shows up as well. Soon, it’s deep conversations and personal misunderstandings as these angst ridden rejects from modern society selfishly focus on their own internal issues. Early buzz suggests something worthwhile. Perhaps as an antidote to the rest of the Summer season spectacle.

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