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Weekend Preview: The Help, 30 Minutes or Less, Must-See is Formula 1 Doc Senna

Thompson on Hollywood By Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood August 11, 2011 at 4:50AM

Girl of summer Emma Stone leads a strong cast in The Help, destined to please mainstream crowds but not necessarily critics and the Academy. Meanwhile, Jesse Eisenberg returns to the big screen for the first time since his Oscar-nominated role in 2010's The Social Network with what is meant to be lighter comedy fare--30 Minutes or Less--but the film is now mired in controversy. Working Title's racing doc Senna is a must-see, while The Last Circus is a "one-of-a-kind experience that will confound, befuddle and amaze," and Littlerock is a "little gem." Glee: The 3D Concert Movie and Final Destination 5 should pull younger audiences. Details, trailers and reviews for these films and more are below:
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Thompson on Hollywood


Girl of summer Emma Stone leads a strong cast in The Help, destined to please mainstream crowds but not necessarily critics and the Academy. Meanwhile, Jesse Eisenberg returns to the big screen for the first time since his Oscar-nominated role in 2010's The Social Network with what is meant to be lighter comedy fare--30 Minutes or Less--but the film is now mired in controversy. Working Title's racing doc Senna is a must-see, while The Last Circus is a "one-of-a-kind experience that will confound, befuddle and amaze," and Littlerock is a "little gem." Glee: The 3D Concert Movie and Final Destination 5 should pull younger audiences. Details, trailers and reviews for these films and more are below:

Thompson on Hollywood

The Help, Disney, USA | Dir: Tate Taylor; Cast: Emma Stone, Octavia Spencer, Viola Davis, Bryce Dallas Howard, Allison Janney, Ahna O'Reilly, Sissy Spacek, Jessica Chastain | B+ criticWIRE | TOH! Review Round-up | ThePlaylist: "critic-proof because it arrives wrapped up in the most deceptive of packaging: good intentions." | Women and Hollywood interviews Spencer | 74% Tomatometer, 63% Metacritic.

30 Minutes or Less, Columbia Pictures, GER/CAN/USA | Dir: Ruben Fleischer; Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Danny McBride, Nick Swardson, Bianca Kajlich, Michael Pena | indieWIRE | Clip | How Real-Life Controversy will Affect Box Office | 45% Tomatometer, 54% Metacritic.

Senna, PDA, UK | Dir: Asif Kapadia | A- criticWIRE | iW interviews Kapadia: "I hope the audience will laugh, cry, fall in love with him and be moved by his remarkable story." | "You’ve never seen anything like it." | 96% Tomatometer, 84% Metacritic.

The Last Circus, Magnolia, SPAIN/FRANCE | Dir: Alex de la Iglesia; Cast: Carlos Areces, Antonio de la Torre and Carolina Bang | B criticWIRE | 100% Tomatometer.

Littlerock, Variance, USA| Dir: Mike Ott; Cast: Atsuko Okatsuka, Cory Zacharia, Rintaro Sawamoto, Roberto 'Sanz' Sanchez | 91% Tomatometer, 59% Metacritic.

Over Your Cities Grass Will Grow, Alice Mind Cinema, FR/NETHERLANDS/UK | Dir: Sophie Fiennes | 86% Tomatometer, 60% Metacritic | "In equal parts mesmerizing and disorienting."

This article is related to: Box Office, Franchises, Genres, Headliners, Independents, Studios, Video, Weekend Preview, Summer, Drama, Documentaries, comedy, Books, Foreign, Trailers


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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.