Saturday, November 12, 2011

Saturday Night Movie Recommendations with Abe

Welcome to a weekly feature here at Movies With Abe. I'm going to be providing a handy guide to a few choice movies currently playing in NYC as well as several films newly released on DVD. I’ll also aim to comment on those films I have not yet had the chance to see, and I invite you to add in your thoughts on any films I haven’t seen in the comments below. Understandably, some weeks will have considerably fewer releases to address than others.

Now Playing in NYC

Melancholia (recommended): This end-of-the-world drama comes from the mind of Lars von Trier, which means it’s understandably unusual. In many of its moments, however, it’s entirely gripping and fascinating, and certainly worth a viewing if its subject matter isn’t too unsettling. Now playing at the Angelika and Lincoln Plaza. Read my review from yesterday.

J. Edgar
(recommended): This J. Edgar Hoover biopic comes from director Clint Eastwood, featuring a likely Oscar-winning lead performance from Leonardo DiCaprio. It’s an intriguing, worthwhile film that never quite reaches the heights that the talent involved suggests it could. Now playing in wide release. My review will be up tomorrow.

London Boulevard (recommended): This gangster drama marks the directorial debut of “The Departed” scribe William Monahan and features a superb cast working with an entertaining script full of humor. Now playing at the IFC Center. My review will be up on Monday.

I’d really rather not see Jack and Jill or Immortals.

New to DVD

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 (mixed bag): This finale to the epic saga suffers from an extreme case of finale fatigue, proving useful mostly for a marathon of the eight films of the series but failing miserably, especially absent the hype of its initial theatrical release, as a saga capper.

The Change-Up (mixed bag): This comedy earns its status mainly because it’s not nearly as terrible as it could have been. The setup and the ensuing plot doesn’t make any sense, but there are funny moments sprinkled throughout thanks to the talents of Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds being used to decent effect.

Now on Netflix Instant Streaming

Rabbit Hole (recommended): Nicole Kidman’s Oscar-nominated performance wasn’t the only terrific element of this harrowing and moving drama. Its upsetting subject matter may deter some, but the rest will find it heartbreaking and extraordinarily powerful.

The Yellow Handkerchief (anti-recommended): This 2010 road movie starring William Hurt, Kristen Stewart, and Eddie Redmayne of “My Week with Marilyn” doesn’t have much to offer, and is a paler version of other films that are much better.

Some Oscar classics from the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s are now available, including Big, Gods and Monsters, Midnight Express, and Bugsy.

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