Happy end of March and Happy April Fool’s Day weekend! Here are your movie notes for whaat’s happening this weekend at your west side Chicago area theaters. Though Wrath of the Titans and Mirror, Mirror has star power, it is doubtful that either movie can top the second weekend of release for The Hunger Games, especially after its record-setting, third best debut in history last weekend. The big question becomes how much does it drop off from the intial frenzy to true staying power. Most big blockbusters drop 40-50% in their second weekend. A drop above 50% is a bad sign and anything less than 40% is a big word-of-mouth win for The Hunger Games. Enjoy!
Wrath of the Titans— For those who were stoked and pumped by the high-octane Clash of the Titans remake from a few years ago, the principal cast (including Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, and Ralph Fiennes) returns to continue their effect-heavy battles between gods, demi-gods, and men. It has a lot of room to improve on the first one. We can only handle so much dry line delivery from Sam Worthington. (trailer)
Mirror Mirror— This is the first of two distinctly different takes on the Snow White fairy tale (the other is sword-filled actioner set for summer starring Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth, and Charlize Theron) coming to theaters in 2012. This one goes the Burton-esque quirky and cute direction with Julie Roberts hamming it up as the Evil Queen trying to prevent hunky Prince Alcott (Armie Hammer of The Social Network) and blissful Snow White (Lily Collins from The Blindside) from love and destiny. This looks almost too clownish, especially with the presence of Nathan Lane. (trailer)
Goon—This is my personal choice for some counter-programming this coming weekend, though it might be hard to find in limited release. It’s been a long time since Slapshot with Paul Newman and America needs a new violent and raunchy hockey movie. Seann Williams Scott, Liev Schreiber, and Jay Baruchel headline a new kind of hockey thug story. (trailer)
Intruders— In a small, obscure limited release, Clive Owen stars as this odd global apparition horror/thriller from the director of 28 Weeks Later. (trailer)
Womb— If Intruders wasn’t obscure enough, Eva Green top-lines this provocative experimental science drama about a wife tempted by the idea of cloning her departed husband via her own womb as the surrogate. Yeah, I’d say that’s a big left field. (trailer)
Bully— Finally, aiming to the this year’s Waiting for “Superman” or Food, Inc., award-winning documentary filmmaker Lee Hirsch takes a long, hard look at the bullying epidemic afflicting America’s youth and schools. It looks brilliant! (trailer)
These new releases into theaters can be found at your local west side Chicago theaters. Advance tickets can be purchased at many of those locations via Fandango and MovieTickets.com. Enjoy the week, everyone!