Movies in Theaters This Friday, February 7, 2014: The Monuments Men, The LEGO Movie, and More
Welcome to the first truly hypable film weekend of the year! After a sluggish (but expected) start to the year, the first weekend in February brings three wide releases. More importantly, they all appear to have something to offer!
The biggest release is undoubtedly The Monuments Men. Originally slated to come out Christmas Day in 2013, the movie had a longer than expected postproduction process. Eventually it was forced back to this weekend. George Clooney directs and stars in the WWII drama with Matt Damon, Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, and more.
The second release is The LEGO Movie. With names like Will Ferrell, Will Arnett, Morgan Freeman, Liam Neeson, Chris Pratt, and Jonah Hill, The Monuments Men doesn’t have much on this animated comedy. To me, the trailers make it seem a lot like 2012’s Wreck-It Ralph…and in no way is that a bad thing.
The third (and final) wide release belongs to Vampire Academy. The film is just another in a long line of book-to-film adaptations. Although I can’t speak for the quality of the novel (or book), I’d keep my eyes on this movie because it could spawn a film franchise of its own.
In limited release, the standout is probably A Field in England. I only know the movie because it has been personally championed by revered director Martin Scorsese. Check it out in limited theaters and V.O.D. services if you want to check out the hype.
The long list of other limited releases are: 7 Boxes, A Fantastic Fear of Everything, After the Dark, Cavemen, Hasee Toh Phasee, Kids of Cash, The Last of the Unjust, Love & Air Sex, Nurse 3D, The Outsider, The Pretty One, Someone Marry Barry, and Welcome to the Jungle.
“The LEGO® Movie,” the first-ever, full-length theatrical LEGO® adventure, from Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures, opens in theaters February 7, 2014.
Directed by Phil Lord & Christopher Miller (“21 Jump Street,” “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs”), it stars Chris Pratt, Will Ferrell, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, Nick Offerman, Alison Brie and Charlie Day, with Liam Neeson and Morgan Freeman.
The original 3D computer animated story follows Emmet, an ordinary, rules-following, perfectly average LEGO minifigure who is mistakenly identified as the most extraordinary person and the key to saving the world. He is drafted into a fellowship of strangers on an epic quest to stop an evil tyrant, a journey for which Emmet is hopelessly and hilariously underprepared.
Based on the true story of the greatest treasure hunt in history, The Monuments Men is an action-thriller focusing on an unlikely World War II platoon, tasked by FDR with going into Germany to rescue artistic masterpieces from Nazi thieves and returning them to their rightful owners. It would be an impossible mission: with the art trapped behind enemy lines, and with the German army under orders to destroy everything as the Reich fell, how could these guys – seven museum directors, curators, and art historians, all more familiar with Michelangelo than the M-1 – possibly hope to succeed? But as the Monuments Men, as they were called, found themselves in a race against time to avoid the destruction of 1000 years of culture, they would risk their lives to protect and defend mankind’s greatest achievements.
Based on the book The Monuments Men by Robert M. Edsel with Bret Witter
Based on author Richelle Mead’s worldwide bestselling series, VAMPIRE ACADEMY tells the legend of Rose Hathaway (Zoey Deutch) and Lissa Dragomir (Lucy Fry), two 17-year-old girls who attend a hidden boarding school for Moroi (mortal, peaceful vampires) and Dhampirs (half-vampire/half-human guardians). Rose, a rebellious guardian-in-training and her best friend, Lissa – a royal vampire princess – have been on the run when they are captured and returned to St. Vladamir’s Academy, the very place where they believe their lives may be in most jeopardy. Thrust back into the perils of Moroi society and high school, Lissa struggles to reclaim her status while Rose trains with her mentor and love-interest, Dimitri (Danila Kozlovsky), to guarantee her place as Lissa’s guardian. Rose will sacrifice everything to protect Lissa from those who intend to exploit her from within the Academy walls and the Strigoi (immortal, evil vampires) who hunt her kind from outside its sanctuary.
It’s Friday, 40 degrees in Asunción.
Víctor a 17 year old wheelbarrow leader, dreams of becoming famous, absorbed on the TV of an appliance store in the Municipal Market Number 4 (a famous city marketplace in Asunción). Then, he loses a customer, another carter got ahead.
The market’s world is hostile, competitive and there are thousands like him waiting to carry things. Víctor knows that he needs to move to get some money that day.
Then he receives an unusual proposal, to carry 7 boxes of unknown content, in exchange for a torn half of a $ 100 bill. The other half will be given to him when he finishes the job. Víctor, who has never seen a bill of this value, has no idea how many Guaraníes (Paraguayan money) means. But he also knows well that he doesn’t have the right to ask. His need is greater than his curiosity.
With a borrowed cell phone, which the contractor uses to tell him the way to go, Víctor embarks on the journey. Crossing the eight blocks that constitute the market seemed easy but things get complicated along the way: the box is stolen from him, he loses the cell phone and the police surround the place looking for something he completely ignores. To all this, is added a group of carters who are also willing to escort the boxes for a pittance of the profits. There is something in those boxes that generate a real wheelbarrow chase in the secret and gloomy corridors of the market.
Without even realizing, Víctor and his pursuers will get involved in a crime of which they don’t know anything: neither the cause nor the victim nor the victimizer. All of them are accomplices, because necessity forces them to run, to scream, to remain silent, or simply to pretend to be ñembotavy (Guaraní word meaning dumb).
Jack (Simon Pegg) is a children’s author turned crime novelist whose detailed research into the lives of Victorian serial killers has turned him into a paranoid wreck, persecuted by an irrational fear of being murdered. When Jack is thrown a life-line by his long-suffering agent, and a mysterious Hollywood executive takes a sudden and inexplicable interest in Jack’s script, what should be his ‘big break’ rapidly turns into his ‘big breakdown’ as Jack is forced to confront his worst fears; among them love, laundry and serial killers.
Amid the Civil War in 17th-Century England, a group of deserters flee from battle through an overgrown field. Captured by an alchemist, the men are forced to help him search to find a hidden treasure that he believes is buried in the field.
At an international school in Jakarta, a philosophy teacher challenges his class of twenty graduating seniors to choose which ten of them would take shelter underground and reboot the human race in the event of a nuclear apocalypse.
Cavemen follows LA playboy Dean (Skylar Astin) who is fed up with one-night-stands and empty relationships and realizes that he wants something more out of life than just a party. With a little inspiration from his nine-year-old nephew and his best friend Tess (Camilla Belle), Dean decides to try his hand at finding true love for the first time – which proves to be much more difficult than he thought in modern-day Los Angeles.
Nikhil is re-introduced to Meeta nearly ten years after their first meeting. Now, as Nikhil has one week to prove himself worth enough to marry Meeta’s sister Karishma, the old acquaintances become quite close to each other.
KIDS FOR CASH is a riveting look behind the notorious scandal that rocked the nation when it first came to light in 2009. Beginning in the wake of the shootings at Columbine, a small town in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania elected a charismatic judge who was hell-bent on keeping kids in line. Under his reign, over 3,000 children were ripped from their families and imprisoned for years for crimes as petty as creating a fake MySpace page. When one parent dared to question this harsh brand of justice, it was revealed that the judge had received millions of dollars in payments from the privately-owned juvenile detention centers where the kids—most of them only in their early teens—were incarcerated.
Exposing the hidden scandal behind the headlines, KIDS FOR CASH unfolds like a real-life thriller. Charting the previously untold stories of the masterminds at the center of the scandal, the film reveals a shocking American secret told from the perspectives of the villains, the victims and the unsung heroes who helped uncover the scandal. In a major dramatic coup, the film features extensive, exclusive access to the judges behind the scheme. Now serving a 28 year sentence in federal prison, the former juvenile court judge at the heart of the scandal shares his ulterior motives, revealing that his attorneys never knew about his interviews for this film.
A place: Theresienstadt. A unique place of propaganda which Adolf Eichmann called the “model ghetto”, designed to mislead the world and Jewish people regarding its real nature, to be the last step before the gas chamber. A man: Benjamin Murmelstein, last president of the Theresienstadt Jewish Council, a fallen hero condemned to exile, who was forced to negotiate day after day from 1938 until the end of the war with Eichmann, to whose trial Murmelstein wasn’t even called to testify. Even though he was without a doubt the one who knew the Nazi executioner best. More than twenty-five years after Shoah, Claude Lanzmann’s new film reveals a little-known yet fundamental aspect of the Holocaust, and sheds light on the origins of the “Final Solution” like never before.
When brokenhearted Stan (Michael Stahl-David) flies to Austin for the weekend in hopes of “accidentally” running into his ex-girlfriend Cathy (Ashley Bell), he arrives to find their best friends Jeff (Zach Cregger)and Kara (Sara Paxton) in the middle of their own vicious breakup. Before too long, battle lines are drawn – and with the Air Sex World Championships in town, anything can go down.
Paz de la Huerta (HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire”) turns up the body heat in this wickedly entertaining story of a fatal attraction. By day, nurse Abby Russell (de la Huerta) lovingly attends to the patients at All Saints Memorial Hospital; by night, Abby prowls nightclubs, luring unfaithful men into dangerous liaisons. After Danni, a young, sensitive nurse, joins the hospital staff, Abby pursues her friendship. But when the friendship turns to obsession, Danni spurns Abby, unleashing Abby’s fury and a rampage of terror.
Revolves around a British military contractor Lex Walker who is told his daughter has died. When he arrives in Los Angeles and discovers the body is not hers, he begins an investigation.
Audrey has all of the qualities that her identical twin sister Laurel wishes she possessed: confidence, style, independence. Alternately, Laurel, sweet but painfully awkward, feels stuck in her life, still living at home, coddling their father and obsessed with the boy next door, for whom she used to babysit. When the sisters reunite for their birthday, tragedy strikes and a fateful mix-up leaves Laurel faced with an opportunity to reinvent herself—and her life—as her beloved sibling.
In a complex, balancing act of a performance, that mixes comedy and drama to riveting effect, TFF-award winner Zoe Kazan plays both sisters. She portrays a dueling mixture of loss and awakening, most poignantly as a relationship blooms with her new neighbor (New Girl’s Jake Johnson). As Laurel begins to slip into the life she has always wanted but never thought was possible, she must decide between continuing her life as Audrey and revealing herself as the perfect fraud. Jenée LaMarque’s first feature film is a funny, quirky tale of identity and the eternal bond between two sisters.
Three friends plot to get rid of their socially inappropriate friend by finding him a wife, but when he meets a woman just like him, their problems double.
A company retreat on a tropical island goes terribly awry.
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