All The Boys Love Mandy Lane – Made in 2006 and sitting on a shelf ever since, Mandy Lane finally escapes and RADiUS-TWC gives it a limited release in theaters and VOD. It’s the usual fare, Mandy Lane (Amber Heard) is the girl who all the guys wants, but can’t have. A group of them visit a friend’s farm, for no other reason than to get Mandy Lane out there. Too bad there is something else out there, something violent, and it’s out for Mandy Lane. Who is Mandy Lane and why does everyone want her? Anson Mount, Michael Welch, Whitney Able, Edwin Hodge, and Aaron Himelstein round out the cast. Jacob Forman wrote the script and Jonathan Levine directed.
Captain Phillips – Based on the book, A Captain’s Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALs, and Dangerous Days at Sea, by Richard Phillips with Stephan Talty, director Paul Greengrass and writer Billy Ray tell the story of Captain Richard Phillips (Tom Hanks), the Somali Pirates and their leader (Barkhad Abdi) and the hijacking that grabbed the world’s attention in 2009. Greengrass brings his shaky, hand-held, cinéma vérité approach to the subject matter and Hanks and Abdi bring the performances. Co-starring Catherine Keener, Corey Johnson, and Max Martini. Out in wide release from Sony Pictures.
CBGB – Country, Blue Grass, and Blues. That was what CBGB was supposed to be, but they just couldn’t get the club off the ground. With nothing left to lose, owner Hilly (Alan Rickman) decided to start letting unknown punk bands take the stage, and he started a musical renaissance. CBGB became home to The Ramones, The Talking Heads, The Police, Richard Hell and the Voidoids, Patti Smith on and on and on, just about everyone played their, except for The Sex Pistols. The club was shut down in 2006, and it only took seven years for the movie to come out. Written by Randall Miller and Jody Savin with Miller directing. Out in limited release from Xlrator Media.
Escape From Tomorrow – It’s the movie that should not exist. I’m sure the Walt Disney Company tried to stop it, but here it is, the very first movie shot at Walt Disney World without the consent of the mouse. A Father loses his job, loses the respect of the family, and loses his mind in this haunting trip down Main Street, U.S.A. where dreams unravel and myth-making and fantasy are a curse. Roy Abramsohn, Elena Schuber, Katelynn Rodriguez, Annet Mahendru, Danielle Safady, and Alison Lees-Taylor are the players, Randy Moore is the writer/director and FilmBuff is the company brave enough to give this a limited release.
The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete – Mister (Skylan Brooks) is fourteen-years-old living on the sketch side of Brooklyn. His mother can’t hold a job and gets arrested for drug possession. Pete (Ethan Dizon) needs to be looked after, but Mister hasn’t any money. Mister has to grow up and grow up fast, because this is Brooklyn, not a forgiven place for a hungry young kid with no money and no hope. Jennifer Hudson, Jordin Sparks, Jeffrey Wright, and Anthony Mackie flesh out the characters of the neighborhood, Michael Starrbury writes, and George Tillman Jr. directs. Out in limited release from Lionsgate Films.
I Will Follow You Into the Dark – Sophia (Mischa Barton) is emotionally wrecked by the death of her parents. She decides to tune out and just be done with it. That is until a chance meeting with Adam (Ryan Eggold) gets her emotions flowing again. But Sophia can’t shake that fear of losing Adam. She’s just going to have to take the leap of faith. Then Adam disappears. Where? Apparently the top floor of his building is a portal from this life to the next, and to get Adam back, Sophia is going to have to pull an Orpheus and go there herself. What a hard left turn this movie makes. Written and directed by Mark Edwin Robinson and out in limited release from Epic Pictures.
Machete Kills – Director Robert Rodriguez is back with another chapter in the ongoing saga that is, Machete. Machete (Danny Trejo) has been left for dead (again), but needs to be called back into action (again), to kill the bad guys (again), and get the girls (also again). Not a reinvention, a reboot, or a remake, just more Machete killing. “Machete kills, that’s what he does!” Amber Heard, Mel Gibson, Jessica Alba, Sofía Vergara, Michelle Rodriguez, and introducing that brand new actor, Carlos Estévez. Written by Kyle Ward and out in wide release from Open Road Films.
Romeo and Juliet – “Two households, both alike in dignity/In fair Verona, where we lay our scene.” At least once a generation, the story of Juliet and her Romeo must be brought out and made new again. Sometimes, it is re-imagined, but this time, director Carlo Carlei and writer Jullian Fellows opt to leave it as a period piece. They also filmed the production in Verona, which gives this version a unique flavor and some credence. Hailee Steinfeld plays the bewitching Capulet, Douglas Booth is handsome Montague, and Ed Westwick, Paul Giamatti, and Stellan Skarsgård add to the cast. Get your hankies ready, “A glooming peace this morning with it brings.”
Sweetwater – Sarah (January Jones) is trying to start all over again. She used to be a prostitute, but now she wants to make an honest woman of herself. The town’s religious leader, Josiah (Jason Isaacs), won’t let that happen, and the whole town of Sweetwater is going to do what they can to keep a good girl down. Looks like Sarah is going to have to take matters into her own hands. Co-starring Ed Harris, Eduardo Noriega, Jason Aldean, and Stephen Root. Written by Kim Hughes and Andrew McKenzie, directed by Brian Skiba and Logan Miller, released by Arc Entertainment.
Zero Charisma – Scott (Sam Eidson) is the perfect looser. He lives with his Grandmother, spends all of his free time role-playing, can barely hold a normal conversation with a human being, and thinks of himself as a leader. Miles (Garrett Graham) is the exact opposite of Scott and when he starts playing with the group, Scott’s position of Alpha Male is in jeopardy. How does Scott take it? Poorly. Directors Andrew Matthews and Katie Graham take an unflatteringly look at a particularly fringe faction of the geek empire. Out in limited release from Tribeca Films.