Eugene Weekly : Movies : 6.4.09



Films open the Friday following date of EW publication unless otherwise noted. See archived movie reviews.

Anvil! The Story of Anvil: No, really: This actually is like a real-life Spinal Tap; it’s the story of a Canadian metal band that sank into oblivion yet never quit — and still hasn’t gave up hope. Director Sacha Gervasi is a fan who takes his subject seriously and turns out  a fantastic film. Not rated. Bijou. See review this issue.

Crank: High Voltage: Jason Statham reprises his role as a hitman who has to undertake stranger and stranger escapes in order to stay alive. Now, his heart’s been replaced with a battery-powered thing that requires jolts of energy. But he wants his real heart back! R. 85 min. Movies 12.

Hangover, The: This summer’s dirty-fun buzz movie stars Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifinakis and Ed Helms as three guys who have no idea what happened at the bachelor party last night. Where’d that guy’s tooth go? Where’d the baby come from? Apparently it’s a really good time finding out. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Heckler’s Night: Mock loudly and cheerfully as the Goat screens Commando. 7 pm Wednesday, June 10, Wandering Goat. Free.

He’s Just Not That Into You: Great cast, embarrassing premise; it’s based, loosely I assume, on the unfortunate book of the same title. However will these lovely young folks ever find troo lurv? PG13. David Minor Theater.

Land of the Lost: This adaptation of the odd ’70s TV series stars Will Ferrell as an oft-mocked scientist who, with his assistant (Anna Friel) and a survivalist (Danny McBride) gets transported to a strange, strange land. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Melvin: Local filmmaker Henry Weintraub’s latest work is a feature-length film about the titular kid (Leif Fuller), who rises from the grave to enlist a nerdy college kid (Patrick O’Driscoll) to take out the bullies who killed him. Bloody, funny and entirely Oregon-made. 11:30 pm Saturday, June 6, Bijou.

My Life in Ruins: The star of My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Nia Vardalos, returns with another Greek adventure; this time she’s a professor who heads to Greece to work as a tour guide. Of course she meets a man there. Cinemark.

Next Day Air: When a shipment of high-grade cocaine ends up in the hands of two small-time crooks, everything goes to hell. It’s not the plot I want to see this for, though; it’s Mos Def, who brightens up the trailers. With Donald Faison, Mike Epps and Debbie Allen. R. Movies 12.

Rocky Horror Picture Show, The: Do the time warp again! Catch the long-term 1970s camp cult classic fave. R. Midnight Saturday, June 6, Bijou.

Twelve: Nikita Mikhalkov’s Oscar-nominated (for Best Foreign Language Film) film is loosely based on Twelve Angry Men; here, 12 male jurors debate the case of an adopted Chechen teenager accused of murdering his Russian stepfather, in the process revealing their own personalities. “A powerful new film inspired by a powerful older one,” said Roger Ebert. PG13. 160 min. Bijou.


Adventureland: Greg Mottola (Superbad) directs a slightly oddball ensemble (including Ryan Reynolds, Twilight’s Kristen Stewart, Jesse Eisenberg, Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig) in this story about a college grad whose job search lands him at the titular amusement park. R. 107 min. Movies 12. (4/9)

Angels and Demons: It’s a big Ron Howard-directed, Tom Hanks-starring movie based on a book by the Da Vinci Code guy. Am I wrong in thinking you’re already going, or you probably don’t care? PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Dance Flick: How many genres are left for Hollywood to make spoof flicks of? I hope we’re running out. PG13. VRC Stadium 15.

Donnie Darko: Richard Kelly’s complex story about a teenager (Jake Gyllenhaal) and his mental illness, with a giant rabbit and a little time travel thrown in. Alternately comic and grim, the film also stars Mary McDonnell as his mother and Jena Malone as the girl he likes. R. David Minor Theater.

Drag Me to Hell: Sam Raimi returns to the genre in which he made his name with this tale of a young loan officer (Alison Lohman) who crosses the wrong old lady (Lorna Raver) and finds herself under a nasty curse. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Fast and Furious: Vin Diesel and Paul Walker return to the hot-cars-and-hot-chicks franchise that spawned their careers. If the title looks familiar, well, there is a difference: The original film was The Fast and the Furious. Perhaps the lack of “the”s this time indicates it’s trimmed down and goes even faster? PG13. Movies 12.

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past: Bit odd to use the Christmas Carol gimmick in the middle of spring, but anyway: At his brother’s wedding, perpetual bachelor Connor (Matthew McConaughey) finds himself visited by the ghost of his uncle (Michael Douglas), who sends the ghosts of the title to keep Connor from screwing up with his childhood love (Jennifer Garner). PG13. VRC Stadium 15.

Goodbye Solo: The third film from writer-editor-director Ramin Bahrani is a beautifully made look at an unlikely friendship, and at both the limits and the power of connection. When cranky old William (Red West) gets into the cab of Solo (Souléyman Sy Savané), both their lives are altered. Subtle, unexpectedly affecting and far less hokey than any plot summary makes it sound. Don’t miss it. R. 91 min. Bijou. (5/28) 

Gran Torino: Clint Eastwood directs and stars as a bigoted veteran who finds himself in a reluctant friendship with a Hmong kid and his family. “A rueful comedy of enlightenment,” said The New Yorker. R. 116 min. Movies 12. (1/15)

Haunting in Connecticut, The: This horror flick about a haunted house is “based on a chilling true story” and stars the slightly odd (to a pop culture buff) trio of Princess Irulan from Dune, Casey Jones from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Beaver Casablancas from Veronica Mars. PG13. Movies 12.

I Love You, Man: Some people are calling this one a dick flick: Paul Rudd proposes to his girlfriend (Rashida Jones), but then desperately needs to find a male best friend to be his best man. So he goes on a bunch of “man-dates.” With Andy Samberg and the delightful Jason Segel. R. Movies 12. (3/26)

Knowing: Nicolas Cage’s son finds, in a time capsule, a strange and cryptic list of numbers written by a girl 50 years ago — and it turns out to list the date of every major catastrophe to happen to the world since. Some dates haven’t happened yet. Alex Proyas (The Crow) directs; Rose Byrne costars. PG13. 122 min. Movies 12.

My Bloody Valentine 3D: The lone survivor of a coal-mine accident keeps waking up from his coma to kill people; the guy who caused the accident returns, in an obvious moment of brilliance, to the small town where it all went wrong — on the same day the terrible things all happened! No way! R. 101 min. David Minor Theater.

Night at the Museum 2: Battle for the Smithsonian: Ben Stiller returns to the museum in which everything — Amelia Earhart (Amy Adams), tiny statues, Lincoln — comes alive at night. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Observe and Report: Seth Rogen stars as a mall cop (another one? Really?) who must take down a flasher, try to charm the makeup-counter woman he adores (Anna Faris) and beat the local cops at their own job. Er, I think. R. Movies 12. (4/16)

Race to Witch Mountain: Disney heads back to Witch Mountain with the Rock, er, Dwayne Johnson, who plays the taxi driver who gets caught up with two kids (AnnaSophia Robb and Alexander Ludwig) who are actually aliens. PG. Movies 12.

Star Trek: J.J. Abrams’ rebooting of the beloved franchise is currently enjoying a nearly perfect Rotten Tomatoes grade — 98 percent! That’s unheard of for a blockbuster! But even crotchety critics are loving the story of the maiden voyage of the Enterprise — and the rivalry-turned-friendship of young James Tiberius Kirk (Chris Pine) and Spock (Zachary Quinto). With Simon Pegg, Zoe Saldana, John Cho and Eric Bana. PG13. 126 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (5/14)

Taken: If you don’t give back Liam Neeson’s daughter (Maggie Grace), he will hunt you down, and he will kill you. You got that? You sure? I hope this Luc Besson-produced action flick is as much fun as it looks, though it seems to take itself awfully seriously. PG13. 93 min. David Minor Theater. Movies 12. 

Terminator: Salvation: Christian Bale takes on the role of John Connor, the hopeful savior of humankind. Sam Worthington is Marcus Wright, whose memories don’t match up with his body; Bryce Dallas Howard and Star Trek’s Anton Yelchin also costar. PG13. 115 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. No stars (5/28)

Up: In the latest film from Pixar, a crotchety old balloon salesman sends his house into the sky (via balloons, of course) to escape from it all — only to find that he has an unwanted stowaway on his porch. The praise is already flowing. PG. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. See review this issue.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine: My efforts to will this movie into not sucking proved mostly fruitless. Sure, Jackman is fine, Schreiber makes a good Sabretooth (if one utterly unlike the one in earlier films), and for about 10 minutes, Ryan Reynolds is a fantastic Deadpool, but the poor effects, silly plot and shallow writing don’t give me much else to care about. PG13. 107 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.


Use the links provided below for specific show times.

Bijou Art Cinemas
Bijou Theater 686-2458 | 492 E. 13th

David Minor Theater
David Minor Theater and Pub 762-1700 | 180 E. 5th

Regal Cinemas
VRC Stadium 15 342-6536 | Valley River Center

Cinemark Theaters
Movies 12 741-1231 | Gateway Mall
Cinemark 17 741-1231 | Gateway Mall