The 2012 PopMatters Fall Film Preview - Part 1

September

by Bill Gibron

3 September 2012

 

14 September


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Arbitrage

Director: Nicholas Jarecki
Cast: Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon, Brit Martling, Nate Parker, Tim Roth
14 September
Arbitrage


It’s a shame that Richard Gere doesn’t get more critical acclaim for his choices. Since skipping out on his commercial cache way back in the ‘80s, he’s made some very interesting career moves. This may not be one of them, but the idea is still intriguing. The actor plays a Wall Street maverick who suddenly finds himself in deep spit. Naturally, there are untold secrets and close companions with competing interests and agendas. Some have called it a compelling character study. Others have labeled it cinematic junk food. Seems like typical Gere.

 

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10 Years

Director: Jamie Linden
Cast: Channing Tatum, Chris Pratt, Lynn Collins, Kate Mara, Rosario Dawson
14 September
10 Years


Channing Tatum must be riding pretty high right now. In the spring, he saw his co-starring role in the goofy 21 Jump Street reboot score some major box office draw. Then the microbudgeted Magic Mike blew up the summer cineplexes, and the beefcake really raked in the bucks. In one four month span he’s gone from boy toy question mark to wholly bankable Hollywood hunk. Granted, this film is from last year, but with all the buzz building around Tatum, it’s not hard to see why it’s showing up now. By the way, the story centers around a high school reunion.

 

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Liberal Arts

Director: Josh Radnor
Cast: Josh Radnor, Zac Efronm, Elizabeth Reaser, Elizabeth Olsen, Allison Janney, Richard Jenkins
14 September
Liberal Arts


More and more, it looks like early Spring and Fall are the times for distributors to try out new cinematic voices. Take writer/director/actor (How I Met Your Mother) Josh Radnor. His feature film debut, Happythankyoumoreplease, got some decided festival love. Now his latest repeats his past preoccupations, again dealing with confused post-college characters trying to make sense of their lives. In this case, a 30-something recruiter who finds himself drawn to a just post-adolescent student. Naturally, he grows more and more nostalgic for his days as an undergrad. With Richard Jenkins as the retiring professor who inspires the set-up.

 

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The Master

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, Laura Dern, Jesse Plemmons
14 September
The Master


This is it. This is September’s gift to worn out cinephiles everywhere. While critics have been specific that this film has very little to do with L. Ron Hubbard and his hokum known as Scientology, the parallels are hard to ignore. So, supposedly, are the performances. As usual, writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson has shrouded his storyline in secrecy, giving away limited details in the engaging and enigmatic trailers. Early press has been practically hyperbolic. Of course, the big question is this? Does Anderson have any real commercial clout? Will his auteur aesthetic draw crowds? We will have to wait and see.

 

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Resident Evil: Retribution

Director: Paul W. S. Anderson
Cast: Milla Jovovich, Sienna Guillory, Johann Urb, Li Bingbing, Shawn Roberts, Kevin Durand, Oded Fehr, Boris Kodjoe, Michelle Rodriguez
14 September
Resident Evil: Retribution


How funny that Paul THOMAS Anderson’s new epic opens the same day as the latest from barrel bottom scraper (and haphazard “namesake”) Paul W.S. Anderson. Convinced he must continue to give his wife, Milla Jovivich, as many mindless over the top action movie options as possible, we again find ourselves dealing with the Umbrella Corporation, the still slightly amnesiatic Alice, and a bunch of returning players. Apparently, the ticket sales internationally keep mandating that more of these lame zombie stomps be made. Imagine the look on someone’s face when they make the mistake of going into the wrong “Paul Anderson” film.

 

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Stolen

Director: Simon West
Cast: Nicolas Cage, Danny Huston, Malin Åkerman, Mark Valley, Josh Lucas
14 September
Stolen


Hey Nick Cage… where have you been? By this time in any given year, you should already have appeared in at least five films. In 2011, you were in four. So far, in 2012, you’ve only darkened disinterested fans with your goofy Ghost Rider sequel. This sounds more up your anything for a paycheck alley. In fact, it sounds like a far more serious take on the recent Dax Shepard flop, Hit and Run. Cage is a thief, recently released from prison, who finds himself the target of a kidnap plot. His daughter is taken by his ex-partner, who is demanding the loot that he thinks Cage still has. Cue the explosions.

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