Movies in Theaters This Friday, December 7, 2012: Playing For Keeps, Hyde Park on Hudson, Lay the Favorite, and More
Since Thanksgiving, we’ve had quite the lineup of new movies. With Christmas right around the corner, there are bound to be more hugely-anticipated movies on the horizon (I’m looking at you Les Misérables and Django Unchained). Unfortunately, this week’s lineup looks a little bare…unless you are a Catherine Zeta-Jones fan.
Our only wide release is Gabriele Muccino’s Playing For Keeps, which has a pretty great cast, including Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Judy Greer, and Dennis Quaid. The romantic-comedy shows a retired athlete who gets a full-court press from the soccer moms as he tries to coach his son. Yes, that’s the actual plot.
There are two notable limited releases, too. First, Hyde Park on Hudson, the British biography/comedy about Franklin D. Roosevelt (Bill Murray) and Margaret Suckley’s (Laura Linney) controversial relationship. Of all this year’s performances, Linney’s turn in The Details makes me most excited to see this one.
Secondly, Stephen Frears’ Lay The Favorite has a limited release. With another strong cast, including Zeta-Jones (again), Bruce Willis, Rebecca Hall, and Joshua Jackson, it looks to be another contender.
As for other limited releases, there a few picks, including Bad Kids Go To Hell, Cheerful Weather For The Wedding, Deadfall, The Fitzgerald Family Christmas, In Our Nature, and Waiting For Lightning.
Below are the trailers and synopses for all of your options. Have a good weekend!
Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Dennis Quaid star in “Playing For Keeps,” a romantic comedy about a charming, down-on-his luck former soccer star (Butler) who returns home to put his life back together. Looking for a way to rebuild his relationship with his son, he gets roped into coaching the boy’s soccer team. But his attempts to finally become an “adult” are met with hilarious challenges from the attractive “soccer moms” who pursue him at every turn. “Playing For Keeps” is directed by Gabriele Muccino, the director of “The Pursuit of Happyness.”
Bad Kids Go To Hell
Six private school high school kids find themselves stuck in detention on a frightfully dark and stormy Saturday afternoon. During their 8 hour incarceration, each of the six kids falls victim to a horrible “accident” until only one of them remains.
And as each of these spoiled rich kids bites the dust, the story takes on a series of humorous and frantic twists and turns.
Is one of the kids secretly evening the school’s social playing field? Or have the ghosts of prestigious Crestview Academy finally come to punish the school’s worst (and seemingly untouchable) brats?
One thing is for sure…Daddy’s money can’t save them now.
Cheerful Weather For The Wedding
On a crisp March morning in 1932, bride-to-be Dolly (Felicity Jones) is hiding in her bedroom daydreaming of the whimsical summer before, helped along by an ample jug of rum. Long-lost cousins and quirky aunts are arriving to the house every hour, and the downstairs living rooms are buzzing with speculation about the bride’s whereabouts. Exasperated by her daughter’s absence, Dolly’s scatterbrained mother Hetty (Elizabeth McGovern) is at her wit’s end, scurrying around the house trying to quell the relatives’ suspicions. Hetty has perfected all of the day’s arrangements, but her plans can’t prepare everyone for the arrival of Dolly’s unpredictable best friend, Joseph (Luke Treadaway).
Lavish costumes in an expansive English countryside manse define Cheerful Weather’s period, while lighthearted humor paired with a steamy romance and the steady hand of newcomer Donald Rice provide the perfect backdrop for the memorable Felicity Jones (Like Crazy, Hysteria) to shine as the mischievous Dolly. Meanwhile, Downton Abbey matriarch Elizabeth McGovern is fantastic as a very different kind of mother, helming this dysfunctional wedding whose weather and participants seem anything but cheerful.
Siblings Addison (Eric Bana) and Liza (Olivia Wilde) are on the run from a casino heist gone wrong. When a car accident leaves their wheel man and a state trooper dead, they split up and make a run for the Canadian border in the worst of circumstances – a near whiteout blizzard. While Addison heads cross-country, creating mayhem in his wake, Liza is picked up by ex-boxer Jay (Charlie Hunnam), en-route for a Thanksgiving homecoming with his parents, June (Sissy Spacek) and retired sheriff Chet (Kris Kristofferson). It’s there the siblings are reunited in a terse and thrilling showdown that pushes the bonds of family to the limit.
When an estranged father returns home for Christmas for the first time since he walked out on his family 20 years earlier, rifts quickly emerge among the adult siblings. Alliances form, old wounds are reopened or glossed over, and the possibility for a new hope and forgiveness emerges.
Academy Award nominees Bill Murray and Laura Linney star in a historical tale that uniquely explores the all-too-human side of one of history’s iconic leaders. Blending literate wit and drama, Hyde Park on Hudson is directed by Roger Michell from a screenplay by Richard Nelson.
In June 1939, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (played by Mr. Murray) readies to host the King and Queen of England (Samuel West and Olivia Colman) for a weekend at the Roosevelt home at Hyde Park on Hudson, in upstate New York – marking the first-ever visit of a reigning British monarch to America. As Britain faces imminent war with Germany, the royals are desperately looking to FDR for U.S. support.
But international affairs must be juggled with the complexities of FDR’s domestic establishment, as his wife Eleanor (Olivia Williams), mother Sara (Elizabeth Wilson), and secretary Missy (Elizabeth Marvel) will all play a part in making the royal weekend an unforgettable one.
Seen through the eyes of Daisy (Ms. Linney), Franklin’s neighbor and intimate, the weekend will produce not only a special relationship between two great nations, but, for Daisy – and through her, for us all – a deeper understanding of the mysteries of love and friendship.
“Lay the Favorite” follows unpredictable dreamer Beth (Rebecca Hall) as she goes from in-home stripper in Tallahassee to gambler’s assistant in Las Vegas, working for Dink (Bruce Willis), one of the most successful sports gamblers in the business. She takes to the work like a natural, but makes the risky bet of falling for Dink, much to the chagrin of his retired showgirl wife Tulip (Catherine Zeta-Jones). That bet goes south, and a triangular war ensues.
Against Dink’s protests, Beth goes to work for the flamboyant, unstable Rosie who runs a less-than-legal operation in New York City, then for his doomed hyper-speed online sportsbook in the betting Babylon that is Curacao. When Beth’s risky gambles result in her innocent boyfriend Jeremy (Joshua Jackson) threatened with prison, she must reunite with Dink, face up to the fearsome Tulip, risk jail, and return to New York City to confront her responsibilities. Can she beat the odds and win the day?
When Brooklynite Seth (Zach Gilford, Friday Night Lights) takes his girlfriend Andie (Jena Malone, INTO THE WILD, THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE) to his family’s weekend house in upstate New York for a romantic getaway, they are unexpectedly joined by his estranged father Gil (John Slattery, Mad Men), and his much-younger new girlfriend, Vicky (Gabrielle Union, 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU). The women carefully negotiate emotional minefields as they persuade father and son to share the house for the first time since the summer vacations of Seth’s childhood. This unexpected family reunion in the great outdoors, fraught with tensions old and new, pushes them all to realize the bonds of family are always stronger and stranger than expected. From the producers of MEEK’S CUTOFF and WENDY AND LUCY, IN OUR NATURE is an earnest, delicately observed family portrait of couples at a crossroads.
Waiting For Lightning
WAITING FOR LIGHTNING is the story of Danny Way, a young boy from a broken home in Vista, CA, whose passion for skateboarding would one day bring him and his creation, a ramp of prodigious and dangerous proportions, across many cultural and ideological boundaries to attempt the impossible: jump China’s Great Wall on a skateboard. It’s a film about how much abuse the body can sustain, how deep you have to dig to survive the betrayals of family, and how high and far dreams can fly
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