Four movies open wide this weekend and, shock of shocks, one of them wasn't screened for critics. Surprisingly, it wasn't the one about the teenage mermaid - instead, they were denied Ultraviolet, the futuristic, shiny, violence-fest. Columbia probably isn't too worried about it, though, because Milla Jovovich is hot enough to rule the box office on the strength of posters alone (Seriously, have you seen those posters?). Critics did have their say, however, on 16 Blocks (derivative, but alright), Block Party (awesome), and Aquamarine (so totally cute, OMG!). The details are below.
- Block Party: The critics have spoken, friends, and they freaking love Dave Chappelle and his partay. Even the few hardened souls who mustered the strength to resist the movie's considerable charms nevertheless found themselves drawn to Chapelle and his easy-going persona. (Also, every single damn review mentioned his appearance on Oprah. We've heard enough about that by now, thanks.)
- 16 Blocks: No, the Fugees aren't in this one, sadly enough. It does, however, feature Bruce Willis and Mos Def, both of whom earn praise from most critics, though said critics don't all feel as positively about the film. Those who do like it freely acknowledge the debt the film owes to the zillions of cop/perp/action flicks that came before, but at least it's fairly accomplished in its derivative-ness. Which means, essentially, that our standards have fallen pathetically low.
if you've got a pre-teen or barely
teenage daughter (or, even
better, are one), Aquamarine is for
you. It's actually pretty good -
again, if you're twelve. If you're not, however, go see something
else. And parents, keep in mind this bit from the most entertaining review of the whole
weekend, written in the voice of the movie's target audience: "When the mermaid and her human friends gawked at
the lifeguard...and [he] shook water off his abs and the movie went all slow motion, dad leaned over and said: 'Brokeback
Mountain didn't make me this uncomfortable.'"