KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It’s time for the spooky Halloween films to hit theaters. Watch the video above to see which ones FOX 4 film critics Russ and Shawn say which ones are worth seeing and which ones you might want to save your money on and catch when it comes out DVD, digital download or Blue Ray.
1) BRIDGE OF SPIES (PG-13)
Team up director Steven Spielberg, actor Tom Hanks and screenwriters Joel and Ethan Coen and something special is bound to happen. Their Cold War thriller “Bridge of Spies” lives up to its considerable potential.
Actually “Bridge of Spies” is the type of movie Steven Spielberg could make in his sleep. And it’s a bit sleepy. It’s overly conventional, if not sluggishly boring at times.
In this true story, Hanks plays an insurance lawyer who is recruited to serve as a negotiator in talks between the U.S. and the Soviet Union in spy swap talks involving U-2 pilot Gary Powers and Soviet operative Rudolf Abel. It’s a snappy cloak-and-dagger flick.
It’s often interesting and well acted but the old-fashion vibe is a bit too old-school and the lack of energy makes “Bridge of Spies” a rather dull watch at times. Not even close to Spielberg’s best work.
RUSS: 4 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 3 Popcorn Bags
3) GOOSEBUMPS (PG)
Oh, the horror. Jack Black stars as children’s writer R.L. Stine in “Goosebumps,” a bizarre movie mashup. When a neighbor boy unlocks one of Stine’s secret volumes, dozens of monsters from Stine’s stories are released to wreak havoc in a small town.
“Goosebumps” is fun but not FUN! The effects are mediocre at best and Jack Black is his typical annoying self.
“Goosebumps” is noisy and frenetic, but may still appeal to undemanding youngsters.
These series of books deserve the Harry Potter treatment but unfortunately got done up like Lemeny Snicket. Remember that bomb?
RUSS: 2 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 2 Popcorn Bags
3) CRIMSON PEAK (R)
“Crimson Peak” is a mesmerizing masterpiece. Director Guillermo del Toro has always had an infinity for the weird and he goes into overdrive with the horror romance “Crimson Peak” in which the set pieces outshine the script but it all works in a very odd sort of creepy way.
RUSS: DID NOT SCREEN
SHAWN: 4 Popcorn Bags
4) FREEHELD (PG-13)
RUSS: Julianne Moore stars in this true story about a New Jersey police officer suffering from terminal cancer. She fights the county government for the right to leave her pension benefits to her domestic partner, played by Ellen Page. What could have been just another “Lifetime Movie” is elevated by heartfelt performances from a top-notch cast.
RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
5) MEET THE PATELS (PG)
RUSS: “Meet the Patels” is an amusing, likable documentary about an Indian-American man, Ravi Patel, who is pressured by his family to find a proper Indian girl to marry while he keeps his Caucasian girlfriend a closely guarded secret. It’s featherweight, but sweet.
RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
ALSO OPENING THIS WEEK:
-“Steve Jobs,” the biopic of the Apple CEO starring Michael Fassbender opens in only one theater this week, so we’ll have the review next week when it opens wide.
-“Woodlawn” is a faith-based true story about racism on an Alabama high school football team. Sean Astin and Jon Voight star.
-“Tales of Halloween” is a horror anthology featuring 10 scary stories, one of which,” was written and directed by KC natives Darren Lynn Bousman and Clint Sears.
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