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What Are You Seeing This Weekend? ‘The Host’ & ‘Place Beyond The Pines’ May Spark ‘Retaliation’ Or ‘Temptation’

What Are You Seeing This Weekend? 'The Host' & 'Place Beyond The Pines' May Spark 'Retaliation' Or 'Temptation'

There ain’t nothing like some bad behavior to kick off a stellar weekend. You know — by cutting class, or taking a walk of shame, or going to work hungover on Friday morning. Or, as the movie stars like to do it, by killing some dudes, pulling off a bank job, stealing a dog, and implanting a jellyfish in a teenage girl’s body. Succumb to your more depraved instincts with the second installment of the “G.I. Joe” franchise; Stephenie Meyer‘s latest paranormal teen love fantasy; Tyler Perry‘s rendition of “Unfaithful;” a doc about the ultimate turn to the dark side in “The Shining;” a British heist film; and a bevy of Philistine-filled indies. And let us know your favored depiction of sin in the comments below!

G.I. Joe: Retaliation” opened Thursday. Directed by Jon M. Chu. Starring Dwayne Johnson, Channing Tatum, Adrianne Palicki, D.J. Cotrona, Jonathan Pryce, Ray Park, Elodie Yung, Byung-Hun Lee, Luke Bracey, Ray Stevenson, and Bruce Willis. Our review: “‘Retaliation’ is no masterpiece, but it’s a movie whose fun doesn’t feel
like a four-letter word — popcorn entertainment that not only rivals
what you see during summer, but surpasses what you see from [‘G.I. Joe: Rise of the Cobra‘ director] Stephen Sommers.” Metacritic: 47 Rotten Tomatoes: 33% The Playlist: B-

The Host.” Directed by Andrew Niccol. Starring Saoirse Ronan, Max Irons, Jake Abel, William Hurt, and Diane Kruger. Our review: “It’s no surprise that [Stephenie] Meyer‘s sci-fi one-off The Host’
(potentially the start of a new trilogy) is now getting the big screen
treatment. It’s also no surprise that it’s just as horrible, if not even
worse, than anything from the ‘Twilight‘ series. It’s a dopey, dull,
depressingly inert sci-fi disaster that retains all of the benchmarks of
Meyer’s mediocrity (the weird politics, the staid plotting, the moony
eyes) but somehow manages to be even more humiliatingly awful.” MC: 43 RT: 8% PL: D-

Tyler Perry’s Temptation: Confessions Of A Marriage Counselor.” Directed by Tyler Perry. Starring Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Lance Gross, Robbie Jones, Kim Kardashian, and Vanessa L. Williams. Lionsgate‘s
embargo has limited the number of reviews (read: there are none), so
here’s the summary lowdown. A pretty lady is tired of her matchmaking
job (she says she wants her own counseling practice, but we think she’s pissed about her reality star coworker) until
a smoking hot entrepreneur comes on as a client. Now she’s just tired
of her husband. Half-naked running in the park, whispered
phone calls, shouting matches, and stolen kisses on
private jets ensue. Bottom line: it’s hard out there for an aspiring
marriage therapist. MC: no reviews yet RT: no reviews yet

The Place Beyond the Pines.” Directed by Derek Cianfrance. Starring Ryan Gosling, Bradley Cooper, Eva Mendes, Ben Mendelsohn, Dane DeHaan, and Emory Cohen. Our review: “This is a film that desires to say something about how we relate to each
other, and how the often overlooked consequences of our actions can
refract down avenues we could never expect. A brilliant, towering
picture, ‘The Place Beyond The Pines’ is a cinematic accomplishment of
extraordinary grace and insight.” MC: 62 RT: 76% PL: A

Welcome To The Punch” opened Wednesday. Directed by Eran Creevy. Starring James McAvoy, Mark Strong, Andrea Riseborough, David Morrissey, Peter Mullan, and Johnny Harris. Our review: “For most of the run-time, ‘Welcome To The Punch’ is thrillingly
cinematic, beautifully made, smarter and funnier than you’d expect, and a
phenomenal showcase for Creevy and his team. See it now, so you can
bore everyone else with how you were there first when Creevy is off
making $200 million blockbusters.” MC: 53 RT: 55% PL: B+

Room 237.” Directed by Rodney Ascher. Our review: “There is no grand answer delivered in the documentary, but instead a
strong suggestion that there is much more than meets the eye in ‘The
.’ Unique and at times profound, it’s a reminder of how much
[Stanley] Kubrick left for us to appreciate in his work, and how the
films always leave something more to be discovered with each viewing.”
MC: 89 RT: 95% PL: A

Blancanieves.” Directed by Pablo Berger. Starring Maribel Verdu, Daniel Gimenez Cacho, Angela Molina, and Pere Ponce. Our review: “The silent trappings seem like a gimmick when employed in 2013, but the story’s impact is never dulled.” MC: 77 RT: 87%

Wrong.” Directed by Quentin Dupieux. Starring
Jack Plotnick
, William Fichtner, Steve Little, Alexis Dziena, and Eric Judor. Our review: “‘Wrong’ may have
its darker moments (tone is certainly an issue), but its director is
playful and more than a little silly at times. He can be weird for
weird’s sake, but we were still in awe, wondering, ‘Where did that come
from?’ It’s hard not to giggle at most everything you’re seeing,
particularly when the strange is treated as normal.” MC: 60 RT: 81% PL: B

Mental.” Directed by P.J. Hogan. Starring Toni Collette, Rebecca Gibney, Anthony LaPaglia, Kerry Fox, and Liev Schreiber. Our review: “Enjoyable performances (and winning newcomer Lily Sullivan
as Coral should also get a shout-out here) can’t compensate for the
film’s lack of control: in Hogan’s hands the broad humor sells out the
sincerity, and when that mark is missed, we end up at ‘twee.'” MC: 53 RT: 45% PL: C+

White Elephant.” Directed by Pablo Trapero. Starring Ricardo Darin, Jeremie Renier, and Martina Gusman.
Our review: “While it never fully transcends the feeling of
I’ve-seen-this-tale-before, it is certainly a worthy, mostly realistic
journey. It marks Trapero yet again as a filmmaker to watch, and Darin,
especially, as a performer who gets better each time he’s on screen. It
never breaks the shackles of predictability, but even with its missteps,
‘White Elephant’ deserves an international audience.” MC: 67 RT: no
score yet
PL: B-

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