the hangover, part II -(Odeon/SilverCity/Uni 4/Caprice) In this follow-up to the raucous raunchfest of last year, that tragically awry bachelor party in Vegas segues into the wedding in Thailand. And can there be any doubt that when those four lads go out for a pre-wedding brunch . . . things aren’t going to go well. At all. Starts Wed.
kung fu panda 2 -(Capitol/SilverCity) One of the really likable animated comedies of a few years back gets a sequel, this time with Po (Jack Black) joining forces with other kung fu masters to defeat a dire villain. With voicings by Angelina Jolie, Gary Oldman and Seth Rogen. Starts Wed.
★★★¼ the bang bang club -(Odeon) Ryan Phillippe heads up some fine actors in a fact-based drama exploring the gut-wrenching moral dilemmas facing a quartet of combat photojournalists striving to be “objective” about the nightmare of civil war and apartheid in South Africa. See review.
★★★½ bridesmaids -(Odeon/SilverCity/Uni 4) SNL’s Kristen Wiig co-wrote and stars in this raucous but smart and heartfelt comedy that celebrates female friendship (while often being rather rude).
★★★ fast five -(Odeon/SilverCity/Caprice) In the latest Fast & Furious installment, those sort-of good guys once again end up on the wrong side of the law as they finds themselves trapped between a vicious drug lord and an implacable federal agent. Starring Paul Walker and Vin Diesel. This is fine, trashy fun.
★★★½ hanna -(Capitol) A 16-year-old girl, trained as an assassin by her CIA rogue agent of a father, is on the run across North Africa and Europe as ruthless intelligence agents try to track her down. Starring Cate Blanchett, Eric Bana and a very persuasive Saoirse Ronan (The Lovely Bones). The plot cheats a bit, but this thriller couched in terms of a fairy tale is engaging and very well directed by Joe Wright (Atonement, Pride & Prejudice).
hoodwinked too! hood vs. evil -(Capitol) This kid-friendly animation is a wacky take-off of classic fairy tales, as Red Riding Hood and the Wolf are called on to investigate the disappearance of Hansel and Gretel.
★★★½ the lincoln lawyer -(Capitol) This tricky crime thriller stars Matthew McConaughey as an unconventional lawyer who gets in over his head while representing a wealthy client accused of murder. Based on the novel by Michael Connelly. McConaughey brings his natural gifts — roguish charm overlaid with dollops of sleaze and smug self-regard — in what could be a career-saving role. The great supporting cast includes Marisa Tomei, William H. Macy, John Leguizamo and Ryan Phillippe.
★★ pirates of the caribbean: on stranger tides -(Capitol/SilverCity/Uni 4/Caprice) Penelope Cruz sets sail with Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush and the other piratical ne’er-do-wells of The Black Pearl in the fourth edition of this increasingly tedious — and alarmingly lucrative — action-comedy series.
★★ priest -(Odeon/SilverCity) Possibly as penance for starring in the atrocious religio-horror flick Legion, talented English thespian Paul Bettany gets to star in another religio-horror flick, this one a post-apocalyptic vampire gorefest deliberately styled after classic westerns. Call it The Good, The Bad and the Undead.
★★★¼ rio -(Capitol/SilverCity/Caprice) This very colourful animated romp stars a domesticated macaw that heads off on a wild jaunt to Rio de Janeiro to find avian amour. Featuring the vocal talents of Jesse Eisenberg and Anne Hathaway.
something borrowed -(Capitol) Kate Hudson stars in a romantic comedy about a perpetually single gal who unexpectedly falls for a guy — too bad he’s the fiancé of her best friend. This turkey has been plucked by virtually every critic in North America.
soul surfer -(Capitol) A teenage surfer loses her arm to a shark attack and somehow summons the courage to ride the waves again. Based on the true-life tale from a few years back.
★★★ source code -(Odeon) Jake Gyllenhaal stars in a sci-fi-ish thriller about a soldier who is teleported into the body of a stranger in order to find the terrorist due to blow up a train in eight minutes. The Matrix-meets-Groundhog-Day premise is more clever than the movie itself, which is solid but unremarkable.
★★½ thor -(Odeon/SilverCity/Uni 4/Caprice) Directed, rather improbably, by Kenneth Branagh, this is a 3D account of the hammer-swinging Norse god after he gets the boot out of Asgard and ends up on earth — which he then has to save from annihilation. Two of the stars not playing Thor are Anthony Hopkins and Natalie Portman. Silly and awkward, but often entertaining.
★★★★ born to be wild -(10am, noon, 2:00, 4:00, 7:00) Take a remarkable safari as this documentary takes you up close and personal with the people who nurture orphaned baby elephants and orangutans en route to re-releasing them into the wild. Narrated by Morgan Freeman. This is a great film!
journey into amazing caves -(11am, 3:00, 6:00, 8:00)
★★★ wired to win: surviving the tour de france -(11am, 2:00, 6:00) Gorgeous race footage combines with intriguing medical details of what happens inside the body when racers go the limit in the ultimate endurance contest.
Movie Monday – Screening ★★★½ Tangled. Here’s a fractured fairy tale telling a different, more rambunctious version of the classic Rapunzel story, complete with nifty characters and some gorgeous 3-D effects. With the voices of Mandy Moore and Ron Perlman. 6:30pm MONDAY in the 1900-block Fort. By donation. 595-FLIC. moviemonday.ca.
Cinecenta at UVic screens its films in the Student Union Building. Tickets are available 40 minutes prior to showtime. Info: 721-8365. cinecenta.com.
certified copy -(Wed.-Thurs., May 25-26: 7:10, 9:15) This French-Italian-Iranian co-production has been compared to both Before Sunrise and Vertigo, due to a provocative storyline in which an English art historian and a French art gallery owner (Juliette Binoche) spend a day together in Tuscany, eventually begin to pretend that they are man and wife. Ultimately, they travel through some kind of Tuscan looking glass and really do seem to be lovers from another time. “A sensual and intellectual delight.” -The New Yorker
★★★½ the lincoln lawyer -(Fri.-Sat.., May 27-28: 7:00, 9:20) This tricky crime thriller stars Matthew McConaughey as an unconventional lawyer who gets in over his head while representing a wealthy client accused of murder. Based on the novel by Michael Connelly. McConaughey brings his natural gifts — roguish charm overlaid with dollops of sleaze and smug self-regard — in what could be a career-saving role. The great supporting cast includes Marisa Tomei, William H. Macy, John Leguizamo and Ryan Phillippe.
★★★ and everything is going fine -(Sun.-Tues., May 29-31: 7:10, 9:00) As a complement to the Uno Festival, Cinecenta is screening Steven Soderbergh’s tribute to master monologist Spalding Gray (Swimming to Cambodia). Comprising mostly rare footage of Gray, this is a touching portrait of the cerebral and emotionally vulnerable racounteur who tragically committed suicide in 2004.
★★★½ barney’s version -(Wed.-Thurs., June 1-2: 7:00, 9:35) Mordecai Richler’s last novel comes to the screen, starring Paul Giamatti as a curmudgeonly rascal of a romantic who struggles mightily with the vicissitudes of life and love — and his own outsize flaws. Co-starring Dustin Hoffman.