Saturday, May 25, 2013

Saturday Night Movie Recommendations with Abe

Welcome back 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 theatres 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

Fill the Void (highly recommended): One of the most powerful and memorable films from the Sundance Film Festival was this highly specific but universally applicable story about a Hasidic Jewish woman in Tel Aviv dealing with a tragic event and its unexpected implications. Those familiar with customs and traditions will find it extremely meaningful, and those unfamiliar should find it very effective as well. Now playing at Landmark Sunshine and Lincoln Plaza. Read my Jewish Journal article from Sundance.

I can’t wait to see Fast and Furious 6, but I made plans during “Fast Five” to see it with a friend, which will happen later this week. Two of the biggest Sundance movies I didn’t have a chance to see, Before Midnight and Alex Gibney’s We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks, are out this week, both of which are surely great films.

New to DVD

Stand Up Guys (mixed bag): This aging gangster movie unites three Oscar winners – Al Pacino, Christopher Walken, and Alan Arkin – and follows their adventures on one action-packed night in an uncreative, unmotivated film that is generally endearing but unexciting. For more about the film, read about the Q & A Teacher I participated in with director Fisher Stevens.

New on Netflix Instant Streaming

Cheerful Weather for the Wedding (mixed bag): This British period drama is extremely reminiscent of “Downton Abbey” – Elizabeth McGovern even stars in both – and fans of that show might enjoy a brief look at forbidden love. Its central performers are good, and the movie is decently enchanting while it lasts.

The Other Woman (mixed bag): This disappointing dramatic follow-up to “Happy Endings” from director Don Roos stars Natalie Portman as a woman mourning the death of her baby while being ostracized from her community because of her romance with her current husband began. It’s far from Portman’s best performance, and the movie just doesn’t manage to be either compelling or interesting.

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