By DNA Smith
MOVIES OF THE WEEK
“Battle: Los Angeles” (PG-13) — Aaron Eckhart (“The Dark Knight”) and his intimidating chin dimple star in the loudest and dumbest film of 2011 (so far). Eckhart plays The Sarge (OK, his name is really Mike, but whatever), a battle-tested Marine who is a member of a platoon filled with Hollywood cliche’d characters charged with kicking some E.T. fanny after the planet is invaded by evil beasties from beyond the stars.
Filmed in glorious Shaky-Cam(tm), the action is incomprehensible, the script — presumably written in crayon — is filled with ham-fisted dialogue, with every line punctuated by a minimum of six exclamation points. It looks like filmmakers were going for a “District 9 Meets Blackhawk Down” vibe, but instead they delivered a ridiculous orgy of Fail.
“Red Riding Hood” (PG-13) — Speaking of Fail, Amanda Seyfried and her creepy Dakota Fanning Zombie Eyes star in this “Twilight”-ed reimagining of the classic fairy tale. Directed by Catherine Hardwicke (“Twilight” — see? I told you), the story is set in a village in Medieval Times. A werewolf has been a-killin’ the townsfolk, Red Riding Hood is stuck in a love triangle and one of her gentlemen admirers just might be Forestburg’s Most-Wanted Lycanthrope (psssst … it’s the one who looks like Taylor Lautner). Dull, slow-moving and as brain-dead as an orphan’s corpse hanging from a Stupid Tree, only the most-devoted Twitards will enjoy this Renaissance Faire of Awfulness.
“Heavy Metal” (R) — The most awesome midnight movie of the 1980s is finally getting a Blu-ray release this week, and it’s about time. Directed by Ivan Reitman (“Stripes,” “Ghostbusters”), based on the adult sci-fi magazine of the same name, and featuring the voices of “SCTV” alumni John Candy, Eugene Levy and Harold Ramis, this anthology of cartoon hot chicks, stoner jokes and amazing stories set to a ’80s metal score from bands like Nazareth, Sammy Hagar, Black Sabbath (and more) is 90 minutes of pure nostalgic fun.
And that does it for me — literally. After more than a decade of being a film critic for King Features, I am passing the torch to a talented young writer named Sam Struckhoff, whose passion for movies rivals my own. I wish him — and you — all the best. I have enjoyed every minute of my tenure here. It’s been a fun ride. See you at the movies. I’ll be in the fifth row, center.
“Haven” The Complete First Season
“The Glades” Season 1
“Happiness Is Peanuts: Snoopy’s Adventures”
“Doctor Who: Time and the Rani”
“PBS: Black in Latin America”
“John Leguizamo’s Freak”
“Elvira’s Movie Macabre: Night of Living Dead”
“The Best of The Dean Martin Variety Show”
“The Best of the ’80s: Magnum P.I. ”
“Yellow Rose: Complete Series”
“Tyler Perry’s House of Payne, Vol. 8”
© 2011 King Features Synd., Inc.