Three movies open wide today, two of them headlined by superstars marking the beginning of the holiday season at the box office. The Denzel Washington runaway train flick "Unstoppable" has great buzz and very solid reviews leading into the weekend and should make its way to the top of the heap, but will still face serious competition from last week's winner "Megamind." The star-studded "Morning Glory," gaining a headstart on the competition by opening on Wednesday, will skew to an older crowd and should draw solid numbers overall, while "Skyline" will appeal to sci-fi fans starved for something new, and with a minuscule budget, should have no trouble making a tidy profit in the long run. As for the art-house this week, things are quiet with just a few low key releases making their way to screens in major markets.
In Wide Release: Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton and Rachel McAdams star in the workplace comedy "Morning Glory" from director Roger Michell ("Changing Lanes," "Notting Hill"). McAdams plays a young and hungry TV producer who finds herself at the helm of "Daybreak," the lowest-rated national morning show. She hires legendary journalist Mike Pomeroy (Ford) to join the ailing program, but he doesn't make things easy, leading to laughs and a lesson learned. We reviewed the film, finding it predictable and borderline tedious, but the cast makes it mildly engaging. We didn't expect a classic like "Network" or "Broadcast News," but certainly hoped for more. RT: 57% Metacritic: 59.
Tony Scott's latest collaboration with Denzel Washington, "Unstoppable," pairs the venerable thesp with Captain Kirk 2.0 himself, Chris Pine. The duo star as an engineer and conductor of a train who are fated to frantically stop an unmanned freight train loaded with combustible chemicals from decimating a city. We reviewed the film earlier in the week, calling it one of Tony Scott's most enjoyable films in years. It's nothing groundbreaking, but Scott trims all the fat and delivers an action-packed thrill ride that's great fun on the big screen. RT: 90% Metacritic: 71.
The bargain basement alien invasion flick "Skyline" from The Brothers Strause, the minds behind "Alien Vs. Predator: Requiem" hits screens nationwide today. Universal has managed an impressive marketing campaign for the film, which has no major stars and a budget of around $10 million. Unfortunately, as we note in our review, the film has all the soul of a video game cut sequence, with little regard for narrative fundamentals and favors mediocre special effects. RT: 29% Metacritic: n/a.
In Limited Release: Filmmaker Ondi Timoner ("Dig!," "We Live In Public") follows controversial author and activist Bjorn Lomborg in search of the real facts and science behind global warming in "Cool It." RT: 43% Metacritic: 58. Stella Schnabel stars in the indie dramedy "You Won't Miss Me" from director Ry Russo-Young. The film tells the story of Shelly Brown, a 23-year-old urban misfit recently released from a psychiatric hospital. We're certainly interested in this one, but the buzz has been very quiet leading up to it's release. RT: n/a Metacritic: n/a. A hit at this year's SXSW festival, "Tiny Furniture" is the autobiographical first feature from young director Lena Durham. Durham also stars, as a recently Oberlin grad who returns to her mother's Tribeca loft to put her life together. We saw the film at the IFFBoston, disappointed to find it an awkward and overly verbose mess. RT: 78% Metacritic: 62.