The last weekend of August is ending in a very stuffy manner for theatrical releases. We got three big titles getting releases as well as last week’s crop of films for the late birds and the rest of the summer’s big blockbusters still wanting some more attention. The big three this week include Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, Colombiana and Our Idiot Brother, with Midnight in Paris expanding a little bit more for an end of the summer shot at getting even more money and Attack the Block adding a few more cities to its release.
It really is a movie lover’s weekend right now. There is a film for everyone, which means I expect everyone to get their butts outside and into a theater!
Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark is the one I am most looking forward to. We are in dire need of a scary and spooky horror film and it looks like del Toro and friends are looking to capitalize on what seems to be a dry summer for horror. Final Destination 5 didn’t fare too well a few weeks ago, but I don’t consider that real horror, it’s more or less silly and fun horror. The last “scary” horror film that I can remember was Insidious, which was released by FilmDistrict, the same company behind Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark. Don’t Be Afraid has a lot going for it right now, it’s a spooky looking creature horror film that can take advantage of the audience who are craving horror, it stars a few big names like Guy Pearce and Katie Holmes and it was produced by horror/fantasy legend Guillermo del Toro and CHUD.com/GUY.com owner Nick Nunziata.
I’ve enjoyed almost everything del Toro has put out and I love the hell out of Nunziata’s CHUD and GUY, so my expectations are high for Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark. The only thing that worries me is newcomer director Troy Nixey. I’ve never heard of him, but I hope that works in his advantage.
Moving onto Colombiana, the latest Luc Besson/Olivier Megaton action picture. It looks like pretty much everything else they’ve done before, but this time with Avatar‘s Zoe Saldana starring as the tough as nails assassin who is set to get revenge on whoever murdered her parents. I like most of Besson/Megaton’s films, not for the story or originality but for the stylized action and pacing. Their films are usually quick and painless, with an occasional film that’s really good. I’m not expecting much from Colombiana, but I am hoping for it to at least be enjoyable.
Closing out the new releases is Our Idiot Brother, starring Paul Rudd as an idiot brother. This is the first film that features Paul Rudd as the main star as well as him playing an idiot. Usually Rudd sticks with the same kind of responsible but funny role, but this time he lets it all loose by playing the idiot brother who is sporting a cool beard! The rest of the cast features Elizabeth Banks, Zooey Deschanel, Rashida Jones and Emily Mortimer.
Our Idiot Brother looks like it could honesty go both ways. It has the potential to be really funny due to the decent cast list and the R rating, but it also looks like it could just be boring and stupid. I’ll give Rudd the benefit of the doubt on this one because I generally like his films and because he has a smile no mortal can resist.
What’s my pick for the weekend? Hands down winner is Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark. I haven’t seen any of the new releases yet, but I can still easily pick that one for several reasons. It has a very strong cast and crew backing it up, it’s an R rated horror movie that isn’t relying on lazy gore to scare you, instead it will be scaring you with actual frightening tension and suspense and lastly because it looks like a good horror film in a year lacking horror. Colombiana looks like your average end of the summer action film and Our Idiot Brother looks a little too unpredictable at this point. Your safest and probably smartest bet is to catch Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark!
Expect my reviews for all three films sometime tonight or tomorrow!