Screening Room: “Monsters University,” “World War Z”

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Apparently Pixar hasn’t run out of magic quite yet. Their latest computer animated comedy, “Monsters University,” is an entertaining prequel to the 2001 hit, “Monsters, Inc.” Billy Crystal and John Goodman return as Mike and Sully, as we share adventures from their college days studying the art and science of scaring.

So what if Mike and Sully met in elementary school. Ignore that huge flaw and enjoy Pixar's take on the in college movie. A little deep for young kids but fun to watch.

There’s plenty of good natured humor, charm and terrific voice work. Dame Helen Mirren adds some gravitas as the stern Dean Hardscrabble. The visuals are impressive, but the upgrade to 3-D is completely unnecessary. It’s no classic, but “Monsters University” more than makes the grade.

Not a classic or better than the first but worth your time and money despite the more than usual flaws for a Pixar film.

RUSS: 4 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 3 Popcorn Bags
**WORLD WAR Z (PG-13)**

Brad Pitt stars in the big screen adaptation of the bestselling novel, “World War Z,” yet another flick about a zombie apocalypse. Under the steady hand of director Marc Forster, it’s an unnerving and realistic drama that may appeal to people who normally don’t like horror movies.

Where's the war? A reckless beginning smashes out Brad Pitt's talent but the star saves the slow moving second half. Plays out more like a faux documentary than a big time action summer blockbuster. When did Wikipedia start making movies?

The gore is kept to a minimum, so the movie gets a PG-13 rating. Smart, somber and a bit messy, “World War Z” is more like “Contagion” than “The Evil Dead.” It may not be thrilling, but it’s thought provoking.

Not a great zombie movie. And fans of the book will complain. It has intellectual swagger but is no fun. So many other better zombie movies. "28 Days Later" "Zombieland" "Shaun of the Dead" and "I am Legend" and that's just recently.

RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 2 Popcorn Bags


Filmmaker Joss Whedon of “The Avengers” fame, takes on something completely different. Shakespeare. “Much Ado About Nothing” is a twist on the classic comedy, shot in black & white and in modern attire at Whedon’s Santa Monica, California home.

“The Kings of Summer” is a coming-of-age comedy that won acclaim at this year’s Sundance Film Festival

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