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Hello, everyone, and welcome back.  This week is a very light week with only two national releases coming to screens near you.  So, if this week holds nothing of interest for you,there’s always catching up with the quality releases of the past few weeks, especially if you have a decent second run theater nearby.

I will be posting my review of “9” this morning shortly after this posting.  I apologize to my regular readers for not getting this up on Tuesday as promised, but I unfortunately was out of commission on Tuesday and, thus, got a bit behind.

So, let’s take a look…

“Paranormal Activity”

Trailer

Synopsis: Soon after moving into a suburban tract home, Katie and Micah become increasingly disturbed by what appears to be a supernatural presence. Hoping to capture evidence of the haunting on film, Katie and Micah set up video cameras in their home, but they are not prepared for the terrifying occurrences which follow.

MovieDruid’s Comments:Early commentary on this film drew comparisons to “The Blair Witch Project.”  And the comparisons seem to have some merit.  The film is shot primarily on hand-held cameras, which will give some people some motion issues.  However, a large portion of the scenes play out through stationary cameras placed around the house.  It’s hard to get a feel for this one based on its pedigree because this is a first project for pretty much everyone involved.  Thus, I was ready to write this off as another “Blair Witch” clone until I read about its journey to the big screen.  The film was originally shown at a horror movie festival in 2007 where it won an Honorable Mention.  After a bit of tweaking it was released in a small number of markets on September 29, 2009.  The plan was to try to generate buzz for the film and see if it was worth a national release.  Using the “Demand” web site the studio indicated it would do a national release if they hit 1,000,000 demands.  Apparently the critical and consumer reviews for the film were enough to do just that.  I would call this a movie definitely worth seeing if you like horror movies, but if you don’t like genuine scares it may be best avoided.  I have not seen so many people calling a movie “very scary” in such gushing terms in a very long time.

“Couples Retreat” – MovieDruid Pick of the Week

Trailer

Synopsis: Their relationship in danger of dissipating, a couple racing to salvage their marriage invites three other couples to join them at a tropical island resort. Upon arriving at the island paradise to enjoy some carefree fun in the sun, the other couples are disturbed to discover that participation in therapy sessions is mandatory if they hope to remain at the resort.

MovieDruid’s Comments:I know, another comedy as Pick of the Week, Seems like one of the signs of the Apocalypse!  Actually, it just seems like Hollywood has decided to start making comedies a little bit smarter in recent months.  While this may not be the most intelligent comedy, it looks to have a panache and wit that make it worth a peek.  Also, the comic timing and skill of the cast, particularly Vince Vaughn (“The Break-Up” & “The Cell”) and Jason Bateman (“The Kingdom” & “Juno”), should be able to keep the film from falling into a series of gags with no cohesiveness. 

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