Friday, April 5, 2013

Go BIG, Go small: This weekend you can go BIG either way.

If you're heading to the movies this weekend and don't know if you should check out the blockbuster in your nearest cineplex or head over to the local art house for something a bit more modest in scale, take heart. This weekend offers a rarity - three chances to go big no matter where you buy your ticket.

GO BIG Retro-style with Jurassic Park 3D.

This weekend you can revisit (if you're as old as I am), or travel to Isla Nublar for the very first time, to take a tour through John Hammond's (played by Richard Attenborough) original Jurassic Park. And this time around you'll be traveling with 3D glasses on.

In Steven Spielberg's first venture into reissuing a classic using digital 3D conversion technology, the most terrifying T-Rex ever to appear on film is romping through the trees and electric fences again, just like it was yesterday. If yesterday was June of 1993. There's money in the madness as this return trip is a prelude of sorts to Jurassic Park IV, scheduled for a 2014 release.

A classic movie, a classic cast and breakthrough technology all spiffed up for today's screens feels like a pretty sure bet for a winning night at the movies. And if any movie seemed destined for a 3D rerelease in its future, this is that movie. C'mon, haven't you always wanted to see the ripples in that glass in three dimensions?

GO BIG with a Director in Danny Boyle's Trance.

Leave it to the Oscar winning Danny Boyle to go from bright and romantic with 2008's Slumdog Millionaire (and very British in directing the opening ceremonies of the London Summer Olympics) to dark and dangerous with an art heist crime caper. With a cast featuring James McAvoy, Vincent Cassel and Rosario Dawson, Boyle spins a not so typical art heist into a came of who-remembers-what, when the guy who may have taken a stolen painting can't remember where he may have taken it. If he's taken it at all.

It's that extra bit that lets Boyle and cast pull out the stops until you're wondering not just who done it, but what exactly was done. Sort of a "who and how done it", with an effective cast driven by a master director. Trance offers a BIG chance to catch a small movie with BIG potential.

GO BIG with the Cast (and Director) in The Company You Keep.

Robert Redford's ninth outing as a feature film director stars Robert Redford. In my book that sentence can read "just go". Watching Redford in the role of an aging 60's radical activist, The Company You Keep feels familiar in the way an old leather bomber jacket looks natural on a retired astronaut.

As the plot recalls the best protest films of the '60s, so too the cast, with performances by Julie Christie, Susan Sarandon, Nick Nolte, Chris Cooper and Richard Jenkins. Adding to that ensemble, the presence of Shia LeBeouf (in likely the smartest script he's had in sometime), Stanley Tucci and Terrence Howard all attest to the draw of working for, and with, Robert Redford.

A complicated story that takes viewers back to difficult issues during a volatile time in our nation's history. Perhaps most interesting is how the topic's talking points still resonate. The Company You Keep offers this weekend's movie goers a triple threat - a chance to go small, go BIG and go Smart.

Thanks to the studios, as always for trailers and poster art.

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