Eugene Weekly : Movies : 7.23.09




Coraline: Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas) adapts Neil Gaiman’s creepy, fantastic story into a creepy, fantastic movie about a girl who finds, behind a door in the wall, a fantatic parallel world — complete with her Other Mother, who has buttons for eyes. PG. David Minor Theater.

Every Little Step: I’m not a big musicals person, and I was absolutely invested in Every Little Step, which follows the casting process for the 2006 revival of A Chorus Line while also revisiting the show’s mid-1970s creation. Dancers compete and commisserate, casting staff discuss, dismiss and direct, and lives are changed by the results. It’s not a competition for fame; it’s a competition for a paycheck that’s undeniably entwined with the chance to keep dancing. It’s good stuff. 93 min. Bijou. See review this issue.

Food, Inc.: Even if you’re tired of the glut of information — which seemingly goes ignored by so many — about the problems with our food industry, this new documentary about the flaws in the system, which pulls together all the big guns (Michael Pollan, Joel Salatin) is worth your time. Bijou. See review this issue.

G-Force: Talking guinea pigs save the world! Or whatever. Is this just an entire film capitalizing on the animation used to create that creepy-eyed creature in the godawful Bedtime Stories? PG. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Imagine That: Eddie Murphy is a businessman who has no time for his daughter until her imaginary world starts turning out the solutions to his work crisis. Can we use that imaginary world to create some more interesting movie plots? PG. Movies 12.

Mysteries of Film Noir: DIVA screens Alfred Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt (1 pm) and Billy Wilder’s Double Indemnity (4 pm) as part of their ongoing seminar. DIVA, July 26. $5 for both screenings.

Orphan: Vera Farmiga and Peter Sarsgaard star as parents devastated by the loss of an unborn child. The kid they take in doesn’t exactly make things better. R. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Ugly Truth, The: Any theories about why Katherine Heigl is once again playing a TV show employee? This charmer pairs her with Gerard Butler as a bad-boy TV personality who thinks he knows everything about the difference between men and woman. You got that “charmer” was being used sarcastically, right? R. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Watchmen: Zack Snyder (300)’s adaptation of what the commercials trumpet as the most acclaimed graphic novel, like, EVER, is pretty good ­ and pretty faithful to Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ book, in which costumed heroes try to solve the murder of one of their own. Among other problems. But Snyder is too busy recreating select moments from the book to bring a vision of his own — beyond highlighting his fascination with violence. R. David Minor Theater (both the theatrical and director’s cuts are showing). (3/12)

Films open the Friday following EW publication date unless otherwise noted.



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. Movies 12.

Brüno: Sacha Baron Cohen follows up Borat with this tale of an Austrian model in America. “Baron Cohen is a geniune comic guerilla, charging right to the front lines of the war against prejudice and sanctimony,” says New York magazine. R. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (7/16)

Earth: James Earl Jones narrates this Disney nature documentary, which focuses on three animal mothers (elephant, polar bear and humpback whale) and their offspring. So pretty, the trailer makes me well up (though that has a lot to do with the heartstring-tugging use of Sigur Rós, of course). G. 96 min. 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. 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? It’s a really good time finding out. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (6/11)

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: Opens Wednesday, July 15. The penultimate Potter tale is a touch complicated: Voldemort is at work in the wizarding and Muggle worlds. Dumbledore needs Harry’s help in many things, including recruiting a new professor to Hogwarts. Students are being attacked, and an old book is full of unexpected information. I so hope this is better than the last one. PG. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (7/16)

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs: The scrappy critters from Ice Age return: two are having a baby, one might be losing his edge and another needs to be rescued. And then there’s that troubling flying squirrel from the preview… PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

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.

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. Movies 12.

Monsters Vs. Aliens: When aliens attack, an unlikely gaggle of monsters — a blob (Seth Rogen), a giant woman (Reese Witherspoon), a genius cockroach (Hugh Laurie) and “The Missing Link” (Will Arnett) — have to save the world. In 3D. PG. 94 min. Movies 12. (4/2)

Moon: Duncan Jones’ feature film debut stars Sam Rockwell as the lone worker on a lunar mining outpost. As his three-year contract draws to a close, things start to get very strange. Intimate in scope but with larger themes under the surface, Moon is a science fiction film that’s not been crossbred with the horror or action genres; it’s a modest delight, but absolutely worth seeing. Bijou. (7/9)

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. Movies 12.

Proposal, The: “High-powered” publishing exec Sandra Bullock makes her put-upon assistant (Ryan Reynolds) get engaged to her so she can stay in the U.S. As much as I’m starting to like Reynolds, this is too much ick — and contrived nonsense — for one film. PG13. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Public Enemies: In the new film from Michael Mann (Heat, The Insider), Johnny Depp and Christian Bale face off as (respectively) gangster John Dillinger and the CIA agent on his case. With the wonderful Marion Cotillard. R. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

Star Trek: Even the most crotchety critics are loving J.J. Abrams’ take on 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. VRC Stadium 15. (5/14)

Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen: A selection of comments: Roger Ebert: “a horrible experience of unbearable length, briefly punctuated by three or four amusing moments.” Detroit News: “A great grinding garbage disposal of a movie.” Dark Horizons: “The male teenage cinematic equivalent of snorting cocaine off a hooker’s ass.” Chicago Tribune: “like listening to rocks in a clothes dryer for 2 1/2 hours.” I think you get the point. PG13. 149 min. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15.

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 — and deserved. PG. Cinemark. VRC Stadium 15. (6/4)

Usual Suspects, The: Does Bryan Singer’s unforgettable debut feature film about an impeccable con still hold up to scrutiny almost 15 years later? I’ve heard yeas and nays. Now’s a good chance to decide for yourself. R. 106 min. David Minor Theater.

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. Movies 12.

Year One: Michael Cera and Jack Black are a couple of hunter-gatherers who go on an epic (totally, man) journey that involves (based on the preview) women, stonings, swords and cameos from David Cross and Paul Rudd. PG13. Movies 12.



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