We’re inching ever close to the 2014 summer blockbuster season, but that’s not to say April is lacking its fair share of spectacle and bombast. This month’s ten movies to see ranges from Marvel’s latest to a mess of independent fare moving away from the festivals and into your local multiplex. It’s time to see what’s worth plunking down your dollars and cents for this month at the movies.
Synopsis: Dom Hemingway (Jude Law) is a prominent safecracker recently released from prison after serving a twelve-year stint. Content to get back to his wild ways, a brush with death forces Dom to reconnect with the daughter (Emilia Clarke) he’s never taken time out for.
What You Need to Know: Jude Law goes all-out as the profane and insane, Dom Hemingway. The film blends comedy and danger all wrapped within a family drama about father/daughter estrangement; and it lets the Kahleesi herself, Emilia Clarke, change her hair and sing a song. Director Richard Shepard’s film caught the attention of our own Kevin Jagernauth last year at TIFF where he gave it a “B+,” praising its formula: “two parts Irvine Welsh, one part ‘Bronson’ a few dashes of perversity” all wrapped in “a blanket of excess.” The movie, according to Jagernauth also delivers on the laughs with several “laugh-out-loud” and “impressively, wittily written” moments.
Release Date: April 2nd in limited release
“Captain America: The Winter Soldier”
Synopsis: In light of the Avengers aftermath, all Steve Rogers aka Captain America (Chris Evans) seeks is a quiet life in Washington, D.C. Instead, he’s drawn back into the antics of S.H.I.E.L.D. and paired up with Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) to unravel a conspiracy that goes deeper than they expect.
What You Need to Know: In 2011, “Captain America: The First Avenger” was the second-highest grossing superhero film of the year (behind Marvel’s other Avenger character, “Thor”) and outgrossed the midnight showing numbers of other comic book movies released in that frame. The massive acclaim for “The Avengers” all but guarantees the success of Captain America’s latest outing in spite of Oliver Lyttelton noticing the film’s bumps in his “B-” review. He says there’s a lot to like and a “serious, semi-grounded feel while still keeping things relatively light and bouncy,” yet the film fails to achieve the lofty ambitions its set. Regardless of quality the Marvel universe isn’t slowing down and the screenwriters are already planning “a psychotic 1950s Cap” for a third outing. If anything, the stinger at the end credits is easily going to whet appetites for “Guardians of the Galaxy” and/or provide a brief taste of “Avengers: Age of Ultron.”
Release Date: April 3rd
Synopsis: Alan Partridge (Steve Coogan), a disgraced television broadcaster, ends up in the middle of a hostage situation when a fellow DJ (Colm Meaney) learns he’s been fired.
What You Need to Know: Steve Coogan’s brought the laughs as Alan Partridge for almost twenty years, yet the character has never quite caught on across the pond. Our own Drew Taylor was less than impressed with the finished product when he saw it back at the New York Film Festival. In his “C”-grade review he was rather surprised how, in spite of five screenwriters, including “Veep” screibe Armando Iannucci they “came up with…this.” The movie certainly looks to have an uphill battle to attract all but the devout Coogan/Alan Partridge fans. However, Coogan’s recent work in "Philomena" will hopefully inspire a new group of fans to seek out a side of the actor they might not be familiar with.
Release Date: April 4th in limited release