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Weekend Preview: Madea, RPattz, Witherspoon & Elephants, Greatest Movie Ever Sold, Incendies

Weekend Preview: Madea, RPattz, Witherspoon & Elephants, Greatest Movie Ever Sold, Incendies

Tyler Perry fans and Robert Pattinson shriekers can flock to theaters this weekend. In the meantime, check out a variety of alternatives from the indiesphere.

Morgan Spurlock’s provocative doc on product placement and movie marketing The Greatest Movie Ever Sold is eye-opening and entertaining (here’s our interview). Tribeca Fest day-and-date title The Bang Bang Club is all too timely, given the recent death in Libya of photojournalist Tim Hetherington. It’s based on a real group of adrenaline-junkie war zone photographers. Indie actioner Stake Land satisfies any zombie cravings, while Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen delivers martial arts action as well as striking images. And be warned: Denis Villeneuve’s foreign language Oscar nominee Incendies, based on a Wadji Mouawad’s fictional play, may elicit strong feelings (from disgust to rage), but its gorgeous opening shot alone is worth the trip to the theatre.

Details, images, reviews and trailers are below.

Water for Elephants, Twentieth Century Fox | Dir: Francis Lawrence; Cast: Reese Witherspoon, Robert Pattinson, Christoph Waltz | 48% Tomatometer, 52% Metacritic, Caryn James’s Review.

Madea’s Big Happy Family, Lionsgate | Dir: Tyler Perry; Cast: Tyler Perry, Loretta Devine, Cassi Davis, Shannon Kane, Isaiah Mustafa | 33% Tomatometer.

The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, Sony Pictures Classics (Doc) | Dir: Morgan Spurlock | 73% Tomatometer, B- indieWIRE, 70% Metacritic.


Sony Pictures Classics (Canada/France) | Dir: Denis Villeneuve; Cast: Allen Altman, Yousef Shweihat, Bader Alami, Karim Babin | B+ indieWIRE, 83% Metacritic, 91% Tomatometer, ThePlaylist Review.

The Bang Bang Club

Tribeca Film (Canada/South Africa) | Dir: Steven Silver; Cast: Ryan Phillippe, Malin Akerman, Taylor Kitsch, Neels Van Jaarsveld, Frank Rautenbach | B- indieWIRE, Caryn James’s Review: “With powerful immediacy, and an eerie resonance with today’s headlines, The Bang Bang Club takes us into the dangerous world of combat photography. Set in South Africa in 1994, the drama is based on the real lives of four men who photographed the violence just before that country’s first non-apartheid election…”

Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen

(Hong Kong) | Dir: Andrew Lau; Cast: Donnie Yen, Shu Qi, Anthony Wong, Huang Bo | B- indieWIRE, 43% Tomatometer, 48% Metacritic.

Stake Land

IFC Midnight | Dir: Jim Mickle; Cast: Connor Paolo, Nick Damici, Kelly McGillis | B+ indieWIRE, 75% Tomatometer, Spout Review.

Among Women and Hollywood‘s listings (*our recommendations):

Women’s Films Now Playing 
Soul Surfer (co-written by Deborah Schwartz)
Miral (written by Rula Jebreal)
I Will Follow (written and directed by Ava Duvernay)
Jane Eyre* (written by Moira Buffini)

Women Directed Films Opening
The Arbor (directed by Clio Barnard; Doc, April 27)

Women Directed Films Currently Playing
Meek’s Cutoff* (Kelly Reichardt)
Blank City (Celine Danhier)
In a Better World* (Susanne Bier)
Queen to Play (Caroline Bottaro)
My Perestroika (Robin Hessman)
Waste Land* (Lucy Walker)
Even the Rain (by Iciar Bollian)

Women Written Films Now Playing
Limitless (Leslie Dixon)
The Music Never Stops (Gwyn Laurie) 
Mars Needs Moms (Wendy Wells)
Take Me Home Tonight (Jackie and Jeff Filgo)
No Strings Attached (Elizabeth Meriwether)


Medea’s Big Happy Family trailer

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