Movies are rated on the following scale, best to worst: Full Price, Matinee, Rental, TV, or Never.
Quentin Tarantino “presents” and the Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA(!) directs this insanely over-the-top kung fu fantasy epic starring Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu. The plot (assuming one exists) almost doesn’t matter, as this promises to be one mind-boggling eye candy fight scene after another, with just enough snarky one-liners to duct-tape it together. Put another way, it’s Big Trouble in Little China meets Kill Bill by way of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Only crazier. That’s worth a little attention, for sure.
This year’s Disney holiday release sees John C. Reilly as the voice of Wreck-It Ralph, a classic 1980s arcade game villain who tires of life as the bad guy and goes on an odyssey of self-discovery — by sneaking into other video games. Expect hilarious parodies of every game genre intermixed with some grin-inducing arcade cameos, all wrapped up in a family friendly bow. Could be the most geek-centric animated flick since The Incredibles. That Sarah Silverman and Jane Lynch are playing backup is just icing on the cake.
Between the gadgets and the stunts, it’s hard to argue that James Bond isn’t a science-fiction character. Based on the early vibe from the latest Daniel Craig Bond installment — directed by Oscar winner Sam Mendes — 007 is in a really good film for a change. Javier Bardem is the new villain playing basically the same creepy lunatic he did in No Country for Old Men only with a little extra Hannibal Lecter thrown in. Ralph Fiennes, Albert Finney, Judi Dench, and Helen McCrory round out a dazzling supporting cast with Berenice Marlohe and Naomie Harris as the newest Bond Girls. Brace for impact.
Based on this series’ box office receipts, somebody out there is excited about the final battle of creepy immortal high school stalker vampires, their codependent girlfriends, and the doormat werewolves they cuckolded. (Actually, that sounds like a way better movie — or book — than was delivered.) If you liked the last three, well, there’s no sense in bailing out now. Of course, the reverse is true, too.
Yet another example of a supposedly unfilmable book showing up on the big screen. The eponymous novel told the tale of Pi, an Indian zookeeper’s son who somehow survived an extended stay on a lifeboat with, among other things, a man-eating tiger. Pi’s account of the ordeal wanders into the fantastical, making this more than an art piece film. (Hopefully, anyway.) When director Ang Lee is on his game, you get Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. When he’s off, you get Hulk. Those are dice worth rolling.
DreamWorks’ animated holiday tentpole is, I kid you not, a hybrid of The Avengers and The Nightmare Before Christmas. When an evil spirit attempts to enslave the Earth, Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and a host of other holiday incarnations band together to thwart the invasion. Hugh Jackman and Alec Baldwin highlight the voice cast, and Guillermo Del Toro is the lunatic genius producing the whole translation of William Joyce’s children’s books. It’s an idea just too crazy not to see…eventually.
Release date: Nov. 21
Geekend rating: Rental
Got a November geek flick you’re most thankful for, or do any (or all) of these offerings throw you into a food coma? Dish out a fresh helping of feedback in the comments section.