KANSAS CITY, Mo--- Will "Room" and "The 33" have a strong enough plot line to take the top rating in the Popcorn Bag movie reviews? Watch the video above to find out.
1) ROOM (R)
I love movies that stress me out. And make me think. And cause emotional distress. "Room" a cinematic masterpiece did all of that and more. Completely realistic. Unapologetically unflinching. At times I wanted to vomit, cry and cheer. No it wasn't easy watching the nightmarish themes but "Room" isn't just one of the best movies of the year. It's one for the ages.
You’d be hard pressed to find more effective acting than in the harrowing drama, “Room.” Brie Larson is terrific playing a woman held captive for years in a backyard shed. She plots an escape with her five-year-old son, who was born in the room.
Yes, lets talk about the acting. One word comes to mind. Brillant. And yes, Brie Larson is a revelation. Bravo! And Jacob Tremblay that portrays the young kid delivers the best performance by a child actor ever. Better than Tatum O'Neal in "Paper Moon," Better than Jodie Foster in "Taxi Driver." Better than Anna Paquin in "The Piano." Better than Quvenzhané Wallis in "Beasts of the Southern Wild." And better the MaCauly Calkin in "Home Alone." Although the subject matter is murky "Room" totally deserves to be seen. Just bring tissue. A barf bag. And an open mind.
Young Jacob Tremblay gives one of the best child performances of all time as the confused and frightened young lad. In spite of the off-putting material, “Room” has depth, is emotionally engrossing and is one of the best films of the year.
RUSS: 5 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 5 Popcorn Bags
2) THE 33 (PG-13)
What should have been one of the year’s best movies is, instead, merely adequate. Antonio Banderas stars in “The 33,” the amazing true story of Chilean miners who were trapped underground for 69 days in 2010.
Nothing can top the real life drama that unfolded back in 2010. But "The 33" does a terrific job of humanizing the story of 33 miners trapped for 69 days in Chile.
Their story captured the imagination of the world, but the cinematic rendition is oddly melodramatic and routine.
I completely disagree. I like the spin and human touches the filmmakers deliver to give you added insight to what was going on above anf below the ground during the 69 days. What you get is a triumphant experience with star power that never torpedoes the story. Sure this seems like the stuff that would make the perfect TV movie but "The 33" rises above that mediocrity.
RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
3) LABYRINTH OF LIES (R)
Claussen Wöbke Putz Filmproduktion
“Labyrinth of Lies” is a German film about a naive young prosecutor who, 20 years after the end of WWII, attempts to prosecute the former Nazis who were responsible for the atrocities at the Auschwitz concentration camp. While it is somewhat compelling and is an important history lesson, “Labyrinth of Lies” has some awkward moments that prevent it from being as riveting as it could be. It's German's official entry into this year's Best Foreign Film Oscar race.
RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
4) MAN UP (Unrated)
There are rom-com clichés aplenty in the raunchy farce, “Man Up.” Stars Simon Pegg and Lake Bell meet cute and their charisma helps overcome many of those clichés. “Man Up” is frothy and forgettable.
RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
ALSO OPENING THIS WEEK:
- “Love the Coopers” (PG-13) is a family reunion comedy starring Olivia Wilde, Diane Keaton and Amanda Seyfried.
-“Suffragette” (PG-13) is a drama about the early days of the fight for women’s right to vote in Britain. Carey Mulligan, Helena Bonham Carter and Meryl Streep star.
-“My All American” (PG) is a college football drama from the writer of “Rudy” and “Hoosiers.” Aaron Eckhart stars.
-“Heart of a Dog” (Unrated) is a documentary from performance artist Laurie Anderson.
-“The Hallow” (R) is an Irish horror flick about demons that lurk in a remote forest.
-“Dangerous Men” (Unrated) is a violent revenge drama
“The Funhouse Massacre” is a horror comedy starring Robert Englund.
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