Movie Beat – 04.11.14

04.11.14 - Cuban FuryCuban Fury – Once a rising star in the world-renowned and lucrative profession of salsa dancer, Bruce (Nick Frost) tossed in the towel and opted for a lifetime of take-out, pastries and self-pity. That was, until the beautiful Julia (Rashida Jones) walked into his life and lit a fire in his loins that would return Bruce to form. Of course, he has a whole lot of obstacles to hurdle, none of which is more damaging than his own lack of confidence. Co-starring Chris O’Dowd, Olivia Colman, Alexandra Roach and the always-incredible Ian McShane. Directed by James Griffiths and in limited release from Entertainment One.


04.11.14 - Draft DayDraft Day – Forget saber metrics, we’re going back to gut instincts and intangibles. Sonny Weaver (Kevin Costner) represents the Cleveland Browns, a perennial loser and he has the coveted Number One Draft Pick. That pick could be the future of the Browns, possibly even overcome a history of embarrassment, or it could alienate the current rising star and sink Weaver’s career. There is an awful lot riding on this one moment. Jennifer Garner, Denis Leary, Ellen Burstyn and Frank Langella co-star. Scott Rothman and Rajiv Joseph penned the script and Ivan Reitman slid back into the director’s chair. In wide release from Summit Entertainment and in time to drum up awareness for the NFL Draft.


04.11.14 - Hank and AshaHank and Asha – Hank (Andrew Pastides) is a lonely New Yorker and Asha (Mahira Kakkar) is an Indian studying in Prague. In another lifetime, they would be pen pals, scribing heartfelt prose out with quill pens by candlelight, but it’s the 21st Century and they connect in the most modern way possible, Face Time (or a generic facsimile). What started as a very honest friendship quickly developed into something much more serious and they have to come to grips with the most obvious questions facing them. Shot using handheld cameras, smart phones and laptops, written by James E. Duff and Julia Morrison with Duff directing as well. Out in limited release from Film Rise.


04.11.14 - Hateship LoveshipHateship Loveship – Johanna (Kristen Wiig) is the shy, silent type who doesn’t seem to bother much with make-up or coordinating outfits. She does have it where it counts, and that is why Mr. McCauley (Nick Nolte) hired her to look after his granddaughter, Sabitha (Hailee Steinfeld). He needs a little help in that department because Sabitha’s mother died and her father, Ken (Guy Pearce), is a drug addict that is trying his best to get out of recovery and back inside the bottle. As all good movie addicts go, he is charming, rugged and full of demons. When Sabitha decides to act out, she tries to hurt both Joanna and Ken by concocting fake love e-mails. These fake e-mails may become real or they may tear the whole family apart. Co-starring Christine Lahti and Jennifer Jason Leigh, written by Alice Munro and directed by Liza Johnson. Out in limited release from IFC Films.


04.11.14 - JoeJoe – Joe (Nicholas Cage) is an ex-con with a dangerous temper and a violent past. Gary (Tye Sheridan) is a hard-luck kid who is trying to rise above the awful and tortured family past that he was born into. Their path’s cross and both are changed for better and for worse. Adapted by Gary Hawkins from the gritty and moving Larry Brown novel, Joe sees director David Gordon Green’s back in his gritty southern world where he seems most at home. Cage returns to roles of substance and Sheridan continues to work with only the best. Ronnie Gene Blevins, Gary Poulter, Adrienne Mishler and Sue Rock also star. Out in limited release from Roadside Attractions.


04.11.14 - OculusOculus – It’s been ten years since the Russell family was ripped apart and young Tim (Garrett Ryan Ewald) was convicted of murdering his parents. Now, young adult Tim (Brenton Thwaites) has been released from juvy and wants to put the whole thing behind him, but his sister, Kaylie (Karen Gillan) refuses to let bygones be bygones. She knows that Tim didn’t kill her parents, a mirror harboring a malevolent spirit did. In fact, this mirror has been killing for centuries, and she’s going to prove it. Rory Cochrane, Katee Sackhoff and James Lafferty also star in this horror movie written and directed by Mike Flanagan. In wide release from Relativity Media.


04.11.14 - Only Loves Left AliveOnly Lovers Left Alive – Just when you thought vampires were overdone, that there was nothing left in the genre to possibly squeeze out, writer/director Jim Jarmusch comes along and breathes new life into it. Tom Hiddleston plays a burnt out rocker who goes looking for his old flame, played by Tilda Swinton. They decided to jump back in it again, even though it didn’t work out too well in the past few centuries, but who knows this time around? Break out the Ray-Bans and sunscreen, it’s hip to be a vamp. Mia Wasikowska, John Hurt, Anton Yelchin and Jeffrey Wright also star in this sleek, too-cool-for-school vampire flick. Out in limited release from Sony Picture Classics.


04.11.14 - The Railway ManRailway Man – Eric Lomax (Jeremy Irvine) was young, idealistic and headed off to war. The Allies were fighting the Japanese and an unlucky Eric wound up in the hands of one particularly nasty Japanese soldier (Tanroh Ishidai) running a Prisoner of War camp. Lomax made a solemn promise to come back one day and make them pay for the pain he was put through. Years passed, Eric grew up (played by Colin Firth now) and met a girl, Patti (Nicole Kidman) and things were looking good. Then Eric’s interrogator is discovered alive and well, and now Eric can’t shake this nagging feeling of hatred and revenge. Patti can’t stop him, Eric’s friends can’t stop him, maybe nothing can stop Eric from exacting his revenge, even if it means throwing away his life. Stellan Skarsgård co-stars in this tale of demons and revenge. Directed by Jonathan Teplitzky and in limited release from The Weinstein Company.


04.11.14 - Rio 2Rio 2 – Time to head back to Carnival in Rio and hang out with everyone’s favorite blue bird. Life has been good to Blu and Jewel since the first movie, but where they thought that they were one, there are actually many. Yes, Jewel and Blu aren’t orphans, whole families of Blue Speaking Macaws reside in the Amazon, so it’s high time they ditched the city and made their way back home. Of course, there will be some complications for city folk in the country and even more complication when a few blue birds end up being much more handsome and charismatic that Blu, but that is all part-and-parcel to the whole experience. Just watch out for the Father-In-Law. Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg,, Jamie Foxx, George Lopez, Tracy Morgan, Jemaine Clement, Bruno Mars and a whole lot more celebrities lend their voices to the latest animated kid fare from director Carlos Saldanha and DreamWorks Entertainment. In wide release for all.


04.11.14 - Thomas Keating A Rising Tide of SilenceThomas Keating: A Rising Tide of Silence – Father Thomas Keating is a world-renowned Catholic Monk who focuses less on the Catholic, more on the spiritual. That is not to say that Keating is non-denominational, quite the contrary. In fact Keating swings so far the other direction-into the realm of theology, philosophy and psychology-that Muslims, Buddhists and Jews all want him to lecture so they might be able to incorporate his ideas of spirituality into theirs. Keating wrote over 30 books, and any one of them is bound to deepen your heart and open your mind, a documentary about the man should do the same. Documentarian (and nephew of Keating), Peter C. Jones brings his story to cinemas in a limited theatrical run.