Spring Movie Guide: March 2012 – Week One

The Lorax

Based on the book by Dr. Seuss

Screenplay by Ken Daurio & Cinco Paul

Directed by Chris Renaud & Kyle Balda

Starring Danny Devito, Ed Helms, Zac Efron, Taylor Swift, Betty White, & Rob Riggle

“A 12-year-old boy searches for the one thing that will enable him to win the affection of the girl of his dreams. To find it he must discover the story of the Lorax, the grumpy yet charming creature who fights to protect his world.”

Dr. Seuss has never lost popularity since first publishing his series of odd rhyming children’s books, and his popularity has recently been transferred over to the new popular medium, feature films.  The Lorax is the latest of these films, in animated form after the success of the animated Horton Hears a Who!, which nearly doubled it’s $85 million budget.

With a voice cast consisting of a wide spectrum of popular actors, from Danny Devito to Zac Efron, it is designed to play to both families and children, in the pattern first established by Disney, and perfected by Pixar.  This one doesn’t have the same quality of animation as Pixar films, but that won’t hamper its ability to pull in some serious cash, especially in a time where few quality family films are being released.  The first quarter of the year is usually reserved for films that can’t compete anywhere else, although the past few years, January and February have picked up in terms of movies that gross big dollars.  Now it has become a prime spot for the “pre-summer” blockbusters, and I’m sure this one will make a nice chunk of change, despite the seeming lack of advertising.

See what Courtney thought in her review.

Rated PG, releasing wide from Universal Pictures.

Project X Story by Michael Bacall

Screenplay by Michael Bacall and Matt Drake

Directed by Nima Nourizadeh

Starring Thomas Mann, Oliver Cooper and Jonathan Daniel Brown

“3 high school seniors throw a birthday party to make a name for themselves. As the night progresses, things spiral out of control as word of the party spreads.”

Found footage’s popularity has grown, and right now we are  at the height of the genre.  What originally started as a string of horror films is now branching out, into the superhero genre (Chronicle) and now comedy with Project X.  From producer Todd Phillips, the director of the hit party films The Hangover, the film was casting n0 names a while back, and people took that to mean it was a “secretive” project.  

Instead, it’s just a found footage movie, so I’m sure they were trying to keep wraps on exactly what they were doing.  The trailers are indicative of what type of humor you’ll find in the film, most of it geared toward the college party crowd, specifically frat boys.  Still, people are loving the concept, and word of mouth will ultimately make or break this movie.  Seeing as how found footage typically finds a good audience with the right advertising, I’m quite sure this one will end up doing fine, especially on what had to be a minuscule production budget, although it seems they’ve spent quite a bit on the advertising.

Read what Jeremy thought of the film in his review.

Rated R, releasing from Warner Brothers.

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