2012.7.27 NOW Playing
Action, Drama / 135 / Korean
“The Thieves” is the upcoming summer blockbuster directed by the critically acclaimed director Choi Dong-hun who had also led “Tazza: The High Rollers” (2006) and “The Big Swindle” (2004).
The plot of the movie centers around a gang of thieves who is called in by a legendary thief Macao Park (Kim Yoon-seok) to the region of Macau in order to steal a rare blue diamond worth $20 million. The gang works in partnership with a group of Hong Kong thieves, but they all have their own agenda to keep the diamond for themselves, but no one yet knows who will succeed in capturing the treasured gem and live to see another day. The film has been highly anticipated as it stars some of the biggest names in Korean cinema, including Kim Hye-su, Lee Jung-jae and Jeon-ji hyun, as well as Hong Kong stars Angelica Lee and Simon Yam. “The Thieves” is compared to Hollywood blockbuster “Ocean’s Eleven” (2001) in that both involve a showcase of high-profile actors and grand theft, yet director Choi believes that whereas the gang members in “Ocean’s Eleven” work in harmony, the gang members in “The Thieves” want to achieve individually, and the action featured in the Korean version is invested with more emotion.
Drama, Thriller / 112 / English
A suspenseful psychological thriller adapted from Lionel Shriver’s novel of the same name, “We Need to Talk About Kevin” is about a mother’s struggle to love her disturbed and increasingly violent son. After a certain “incident” involving her son Kevin, Eva retreats into a solitary life, retreating from hostile neighbors, and looks back at her memories and struggles as a mother of an increasingly violent and psychopathic son. The film follows Eva’s flashbacks into Kevin’s disturbing behavior in his early childhood progressing into a violent adolescence and her own internal conflicts about her own culpability as a mother. The film not only explores the mother-son relationship, but also delves into nature versus nurture.
Haunting and deeply emotional, “We Need to Talk About Kevin” questions innate good and evil and aims to humanize those considered “unforgivable.” However, the film has been criticized for being too fragmented and unnecessarily unsettling. But it certainly delivers its promise of being bone chillingly disturbing. Swinton’s superb performance deserves applause as she is able to perfectly channel the psychological distress of a woman who faces a mother’s worst nightmare.
Kids, Comedy / 88 / English
The fourth and perhaps final installment of the animated series that follows the hapless escapades of mammals living in prehistoric times. In this film, the continents are shifting and the herd of heroes finds themselves stranded on a seaborne icecap. The film is considered a box office success. Reviewers have criticized the film’s simple plot, recycled gags and wacky yet static characters, but appreciated its occasions of charm and slapstick, as well as its visual beauty and inventiveness. Then again, as movie blogger Tim Brayton put it, “If you are of an age to care enough about movies that you read movie reviews, you are not the film’s target audience.”
But if that’s so, will you still enjoy the movie? Christopher Orr of the Atlantic points out, “In an animation era in which making kids movies that also appeal to adults is all the rage, the Ice Age franchise is pretty resolute about making kids movies for kids.”
Action, Mystery, Thriller / 105 / English
Discouraged by chronic writer’s block and recently rejected by his girlfriend Lindy (Abby Cornish), writer Eddie Morra (Bradley Cooper) decides to take an experimental drug that gives him the ability to use 100 percent of his mind. Eddie runs into an old friend who introduces him to NZT, a black-market “smart drug,” which allows Eddie to become the absolute perfect version of himself. He suddenly finds his memory impeccable and his acquisition of information quick and expedient and uses his new abilities to exploit Wall Street. However, Eddie’s overnight success doesn’t go unnoticed - he catches the attention of business mogul and investor Carl Loon (Robert De Niro) and the suspicions of greedy mobsters who want the pill for themselves. Eddie soon realizes that taking the easy way out comes at an incredible price and he finds himself racing to save his own life. “Limitless” has been well received as being more than the standard thriller - intelligent, suspenseful and original. However, some critics have dubbed “Limitless” as being just the opposite: limited. They criticize Cooper’s one-dimensional acting and the premise of the movie itself, dubbing “smart drugs” an outdated subject matter. Yet, the skillful cinematography and unique camera angles pump adrenaline into the movie. All in all, the movie carries momentum and intrigue, and critics and fans alike agree that it is in fact an entertaining watch.
Everything Must Go (15)
Comedy, Drama / 97 / English
After another alcoholic relapse, Nick Halsey (Will Ferrell) finds himself completely lost: He is fired from his sales job, only to come home and finds that his wife has left and kicked him out. With no money and nowhere to go, Nick resorts to living on the lawn, hopelessly drinking his beer. When the police ask Nick to vacate the premises, his cop friend, Frank, gives him a five-day permit for a lawn sale. While trying to sell his belongings, he befriends neighborhood kid (Christopher Wallace) and new neighbor Samantha (Rebecca Hall). Though the story line is simple, this film delves into what it means to climb your way up from rock bottom. Nick learns that in order to truly start over and let go, everything must go - starting with all of his old belongings. The movie is more of a human drama rather than a happy-go-lucky comedy one may expect from “Anchorman” and “Blades of Glory” actor Will Ferrell. However, the script’s wit and dry humor, coupled with an exceptional job by the cast, make this film endearingly funny. In this film, Ferrell proves that he can also do drama - he is funny, moving and brings a very human, relatable quality into the deadbeat character. Some critics wish the film could have been bolder and more humorous, while others commend the film for not fishing for a punch-line and simply “being what it is,” allowing viewers to enjoy the film on its own terms.
Mystery, Thriller / 86 / Korean
“Two Moons” is directed by Kim Dong-bin, who was formerly a director of other horror films like “The Ring Virus”(1999) and “Red eye”(2004). Park Han-byul starring ‘So-hee’ in “Two Moons” also has experience in horror films such as “Whispering Corridors 3: Wishing Stairs”(2003) and “Yoga School”(2009). Blood and hair-raising sounds replaced by sound storyline and atmospheric synesthesia to the characters, “Two Moons” could be a perfect chill for the summer heat.