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Hello once again, everyone.

Well, here we are in mid-February and the weather outside in central PA is nearing the 70 degree mark.  It is truly weird being comfortable in a pair of shorts outside the week of Valentine’s Day.

But, I digress. We’re here for movies, not weather commentary.  After all, talking about the weather is probably the most banal of small talk.

So, rather than indulging in further vapidness, let’s take a look at the cinemas.

“Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son”

Trailer

Synopsis: Big Momma is back – and this time he has big backup: his teenage stepson Trent (Brandon T. Jackson). Martin Lawrence returns as FBI agent Malcolm Turner and as Turner’s deep-cover alter-ego Big Momma. Turner is joined by Trent, as they go undercover at an all-girls performing arts school after Trent witnesses a murder. Posing as Big Momma and as hefty coed Charmaine, they must find the murderer before he finds them.

MovieDruid’s Comments: I know that there is a place and an audience for this sort of film.  I also know that I am not it.  Now, before you write this off as just another case of the MovieDruid being a comedy hater, keep this in mind: I am a fan of Martin Lawrence.  I enjoy much of his work from the “Bad Boys” movies to “Death at a Funeral.”  However, the “Big Momma” franchise is one that I don’t really have an interest in.  The idea of the cross dresser as comedy has been hashed and rehashed so many times, that the jokes have all been made.  This is cliche built on further cliche, and the talent of the cast would be better used elsewhere.

“Unknown”

Trailer

Synopsis: Dr. Martin Harris awakens after a car accident in Berlin to discover that his wife suddenly doesn’t recognize him and another man has assumed his identity. Ignored by disbelieving authorities and hunted by mysterious assassins, he finds himself alone, tired, and on the run.

MovieDruid’s Comments: On the surface this looks like a fairly solid film.  It has all the markers of a good thriller.  It has a gifted star, Liam Neeson (“Rob Roy” & “The Mission”), in its lead role.  It seems to do everything right.  My fear is that this is a smokescreen of sorts, especially once you look a little harder.  First off, my biggest fear is that this is going to become a clone of “Taken” on many levels.  Granted the stories are different, but there are enough of the common thriller elements present for this to seem like a potentially brazen attempt to ride on the coattails of that film.  However, my biggest concern is the director, Jaume Collet-Serra.  His filmography is short, which isn’t necessarily an issue.  But, it is also full of films like “Orphan” and “House of Wax,” and that is a concern.  Can this one overcome the inevitable comparisons to Neeson’s turn in the solid “Taken”?  I don’t know, but with this director, I must admit, I have my doubts.

“I Am Number Four” – MovieDruid Pick of the Week

Trailer

Synopsis: Three are dead. He is Number Four. D.J. Caruso helms an action-packed thriller about an extraordinary young man, John Smith, who is a fugitive on the run from ruthless enemies sent to destroy him. Changing his identity, moving from town to town with his guardian Henri, John is always the new kid with no ties to his past. In the small Ohio town he now calls home, John encounters unexpected, life-changing events-his first love, powerful new abilities and a connection to the others who share his incredible destiny.

MovieDruid’s Comments: A little bit of sci-fi is always a good thing, and here we seem to have a solid dose.  There is a concern with Michael Bay involved that this will become a bit ridiculous, but he is sitting in the producer’s chair and has handed the directorial reins over to the gifted D.J. Caruso (“Eagle Eye” & “Taking Lives”).  The cast, in general, have short resumes, mainly due to their youth.  However Alex Pettyfer (“Wild Child” & “Tormented”) seems to have a good handle on his role and Dianna Agron (“Burlesque” and TV’s “Glee”) is a fairly proven performer.  And, of course, Timothy Olyphant (“Dreamcatcher” & “The Crazies”) has a history of solid performances.  This one seems to have the earmarks of a well-made film, let’s hope it lives up to that appearance.

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