Summer of Same: August 2009

Director: David R. Ellis
Film: Final Destination: Death Trip 3D
Studio: Warner Bros.
Cast: Bobby Campo, Shantel VanSanten, Haley Webb, Nick Zano, Krista Allen, Jackson Walker
MPAA rating: R
First date: 2009
US Release Date: 2009-08-14 (General release)
Image: http://images.popmatters.com/blog_art/f/finaldestination4poster.jpg

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14 August

Final Destination: Death Trip 3D

With 3D horror clearly the new fear fad (isn’t that right, My Bloody Valentine???), it’s no surprise that this fourth go-around for the Grim Reaper splatter satire is using the added dimensions of the format to refuel the franchise. While the first film used a more meaningful combination of suspense and Rube Goldberg-like gore, the remaining sequels have stuck to the slaughter and very little else. The NASCAR based set up at least taps into something different, though it might be hard to top Part 2’s horrific car crash opening, and it must be getting harder and harder to turn coincidence and circumstance into a killing spree. Still this has been one of the more amusing fright franchises, and the added appeal of 3D makes it a theatrical must-see. Final Destination: Death Trip 3D

Director: Neill Blomkamp
Film: District 9
Studio: Sony
Cast: William Allen Young, Jason Cope, Sharlto Copley, Kenneth Nkosi, David James, Venessa Haywood
Website: http://d-9.com/
MPAA rating: R
First date: 2009
US Release Date: 2009-08-14 (General release)
Image: http://images.popmatters.com/blog_art/d/district9poster.jpg

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14 August

District 9

For fans still fuming over how the Peter Jackson produced adaptation of videgame fave Halo was treated by Universal, here’s the next best thing – a sci-fi film based on writer/director Neil Blomkamp’s political allegory about illegal extraterrestrials hiding out in South Africa. The original short, entitled Alive in Joburg, has an eerie, ‘you are there’ quality, and the Kiwi mastermind behind the Lord of the Rings phenomenon promises more of the same here. This might just be the Summer 2009 effort to watch out for. District 9

Director: Todd Graff
Film: Bandslam
Studio: Summit Entertainment
Cast: Gaelan Connell, Alyson Michalka, Vanessa Hudgens, Scott Porter, Lisa Kudrow
Website: http://bandslam-movie.com/
MPAA rating: PG
First date: 2009
US Release Date: 2009-08-14 (General release)
Image: http://images.popmatters.com/blog_art/b/bandslam.jpg

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14 August

Bandslam

The poster looks like a reject from Camp High School Musical Rock, and fledgling filmmaker Todd Graff appears to be re-mining territory he covered in his 2003 tale, Camp. Still, with a hot young cast including HSM’s Vanessa Hudgens and a surprise cameo from David Bowie (an influence of the characters in the film), this might be able to tap into the wannabe wishes of a Guitar Hero heavy populace.

Bandslam

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