Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Troubled Western 'Jane Got a Gun' Rescued as Relativity Files for Bankruptcy (Updated) Troubled Western 'Jane Got a Gun' Rescued as Relativity Files for Bankruptcy (Updated) 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film 'The Witch' Won't Open Until 2016, But Its Sundance-Winning Director Has a New Film Charles Aidikoff Screening Room Shutters: End of an Era for LA Critics? Charles Aidikoff Screening Room Shutters: End of an Era for LA Critics? How HBO's 'Ballers' Fails Sports Fans How HBO's 'Ballers' Fails Sports Fans Michael Moore Reveals Stealth NSA Project 'Where to Invade Next' on Periscope Michael Moore Reveals Stealth NSA Project 'Where to Invade Next' on Periscope Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Showtime Chief on David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks' Revival: "It's His Show" Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Toronto Film Festival Lineup: What Did They Get? Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Discover the Brothers Quay, Identical Twin Animators Who Inspired Christopher Nolan Richard Linklater's Untitled New Film Pushed to 2016, Might Direct Jennifer Lawrence Movie Richard Linklater's Untitled New Film Pushed to 2016, Might Direct Jennifer Lawrence Movie Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers Jill Soloway Says "There Is an All Out-Attack" on Female Filmmakers 'Steve Jobs' Joins Fall Festival Contenders as NYFF Centerpiece Gala: What's Coming Up and What's Not (UPDATED) 'Steve Jobs' Joins Fall Festival Contenders as NYFF Centerpiece Gala: What's Coming Up and What's Not (UPDATED) Top 10 Takeaways: Holdover 'Ant-Man' Tops Blah Week, Summer Slot for 'Southpaw' Pays Off Top 10 Takeaways: Holdover 'Ant-Man' Tops Blah Week, Summer Slot for 'Southpaw' Pays Off Arthouse Audit: Is 'Phoenix' This Year's 'Ida'? 'Mr. Holmes' Stays Strong Arthouse Audit: Is 'Phoenix' This Year's 'Ida'? 'Mr. Holmes' Stays Strong Friday Box Office: Sandler's 'Pixels' Gets Mixed Response, 'Paper Towns,' 'Southpaw' Not Far Behind Friday Box Office: Sandler's 'Pixels' Gets Mixed Response, 'Paper Towns,' 'Southpaw' Not Far Behind Scott Foundas Explains Why He's Leaving Film Criticism--Again--for Amazon Studios Scott Foundas Explains Why He's Leaving Film Criticism--Again--for Amazon Studios Congrats to Monica Bellucci: She's Making History Congrats to Monica Bellucci: She's Making History Watch: The Secret Ingredient to David Lynch's Disorienting Cinema Watch: The Secret Ingredient to David Lynch's Disorienting Cinema First Look: 'No' Director Pablo Larraín Channels 'Neruda' with Gael García Bernal First Look: 'No' Director Pablo Larraín Channels 'Neruda' with Gael García Bernal Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A) Why Kevin Costner Paid for 'Black or White' (New Trailer, Sneak Preview Q & A) Gabriel García Márquez and Akira Kurosawa Talk Film, Writing and 'Rhapsody in August' in 1991 Gabriel García Márquez and Akira Kurosawa Talk Film, Writing and 'Rhapsody in August' in 1991

This Weekend, Drive Past 'Need for Speed' and Head for the Indies

Thompson on Hollywood By Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio | Thompson on Hollywood March 12, 2014 at 7:55PM

This weekend, your best bet is to steer clear of "Need for Speed" and seek out a few indies instead. The critics have spoken, and "Breaking Bad" star Aaron Paul's first mainstream theatrical vehicle, based on the wildly popular video game racing franchise, has no wheels. So instead, why not catch not one, but two hunky Jake Gyllenhaals in Denis Villeneuve's moody "Enemy," director Jason Bateman's "Bad Words," the long-awaited "Veronica Mars" movie, or even some sweet old folks in "Le Week-End"? Trailers below.
0
Jake Gyllenhaal times two in "Enemy."
Jake Gyllenhaal times two in "Enemy."

This weekend, your best bet is to steer clear of "Need for Speed" and seek out a few indies instead. The critics have spoken, and "Breaking Bad" star Aaron Paul's first mainstream theatrical vehicle, based on the wildly popular video game racing franchise, has no wheels. So instead, why not catch not one, but two hunky Jake Gyllenhaals in Denis Villeneuve's moody "Enemy," director Jason Bateman's "Bad Words," the long-awaited "Veronica Mars" movie, or even some sweet old folks in "Le Week-End"? Trailers below.

With fest-circuit hit "Le Week-End," Brit director Roger Michell ("Notting Hill") returns to his home turf after several limp Hollywood outings ("Morning Glory," "Hyde Park on Hudson"). He directs writer Hanif Kureishi's sharp, acutely observed romantic comedy about a 60ish couple (Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan) hoping to liven up their marriage with an anniversary celebration in Paris, where they honeymooned 30 years before. When big personality Jeff Goldblum sweeps flirtatiously into the mix, hilarity ensues.

If "Black Swan" were remade and recast with Jake Gyllenhaal as a lonely professor in place of psycho ballerina Natalie Portman, it might look something like "Enemy," Canadian helmer Denis Villeneuve's ("Prisoners") anxiety-drenched doppelganger thriller from Jose Saramago's novel "The Double." At a curt 90 minutes, this schizoid head trip never loosens its grip as we follow Adam (Gyllenhaal) on a sinuous journey to find, and possibly destroy, his dead ringer. A la Hitch, leggy blondes abound in this psychosexual thriller offering more clues than answers. Pretentious? Sure, but never overtly self-serious.

"Veronica Mars"
"Veronica Mars"

Via Warner Bros. comes the Kickstarted "Veronica Mars" movie, director Rob Thomas' spinoff of his beloved cable caper, premiering day-and-date in theaters and on VOD Friday. It's the first time a major studio has ever done this. The film revisits everyone's favorite plucky private investigator, played of course by Kristen Bell, who years after the events of the original series gets pulled back to her hometown for one last case. Any member of the "Veronica Mars" cult -- and there are many of them -- won't be skipping this one.

In limited release off the festival circuit arrives Jason Bateman's raunchy directorial debut "Bad Words." The well-reviewed, politically incorrect comedy stars Bateman as a former child spelling bee star who, now grown-up, jumps back into the otherwise kid-friendly competition to redeem his faded reputation. Critics enjoyed the foul-mouthing movie, which costars comediennes Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney and Rachael Harris, and is slated to go wider on March 28. Considering Bateman's "Arrested Development" fame, niche audiences should come out for this one.

Le Week-End Dir. Roger Michell, UK | Music Box Films: Cast: Jeff Goldblum, Jim Broadbent, Lindsay Duncan, Olly Alexander | 98% Fresh | Film.com: "While the overall film is more mild, and ends with a somewhat silly deus-ex-Goldblumina, the good of seeing senior citizens treated maturely on film far outweighs the bad."

Enemy Dir. Denis Villeneuve, Canada | A24 | Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Melanie Laurent, Isabella Rossellini | 83% Fresh | Slant: "Jake Gyllenhaal embodies the two roles with real presence, establishing Adam's sniveling wimp and Anthony's striding jerk as two believably discrete sides of the same coin." | Our review

Veronica Mars Dir. Rob Thomas, USA | Warner Bros. | Cast: Kristen Bell, Francis Capra, Martin Starr, Ryan Hansen, Kristen Ritter | 77% Fresh | The Wrap: "Veronica Mars makes the jokes witty, the mystery challenging and the suspense and action tense. You don't have to have tuned in to the small-screen version to enjoy it on the big one."

Bad Words Dir. Jason Bateman, USA | Focus Features | Cast: Jason Bateman, Kathryn Hahn, Allison Janney, Rachael Harris, Philip Baker Hall | 75% Fresh | Variety: "Jason Bateman makes an auspicious directing debut with this exuberantly foul-mouthed and mean-spirited comedy."

Need for Speed Dir. Scott Waugh, USA | Disney | Cast: Aaron Paul, Dakota Johnson, Dominic Cooper, Imogen Poots, Michael Poots | 26% Fresh | Village Voice: "Scott Waugh's moronic flick has multiple personalities -- it's the 'Sibyl' of street racing, with a script that doesn't feel so much typed as button-mashed."

) ) ) ) ) )

This article is related to: Reviews, Reviews, Enemy, Denis Villeneuve, Denis Villeneuve, Jake Gyllenhaal, Veronica Mars, Kickstarter , Tyler Perry, Aaron Paul, Bad Words, Jason Bateman


E-Mail Updates








Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.