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Weekend Preview: Pirates Will Push Back Thor and Bridesmaids, but Midnight in Paris Is Must-See

Thompson on Hollywood By Sophia Savage and Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood May 20, 2011 at 6:21AM

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides may be commanding 81% of Fandango's ticket sales -- and could score a $90 million weekend -- but it's getting a critical spanking. To be surprised and delighted rather than lulled into a familiar open-eyed coma, go to Woody Allen's delightful Midnight in Paris: savor every line of dialogue. Here's our early review round-up; Paris now sits at 91% fresh.
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Thompson on Hollywood

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides may be commanding 81% of Fandango's ticket sales -- and could score a $90 million weekend -- but it's getting a critical spanking. To be surprised and delighted rather than lulled into a familiar open-eyed coma, go to Woody Allen's delightful Midnight in Paris: savor every line of dialogue. Here's our early review round-up; Paris now sits at 91% fresh.

The rest of the weekend's offerings are critical disappointments, except for Earthwork (75%), in release thanks to star John Hawkes' Oscar nomination last year. Jodie Foster's The Beaver goes into wider release this weekend following a slight PR bump from Cannes, but that won't save it.

Reviews, pictures, trailers and details are below:

More reviews: MovieReviewIntelligence, RottenTomatoes, Metacritic.

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Disney | Dir: Rob Marshall; Cast: Johnny Depp, Penelope Cruz, Geoffrey Rush, Ian McShane, Kevin McNally, Sam Claflin, Astrid Berges-Frisbey, Keith Richards.

Midnight in Paris, Sony Pictures Classics | Dir: Woody Allen; Cast: Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard, Owen Wilson, Michael Sheen, Adrien Brody, Kathy Bates, Alison Pill, Lea Seydoux | B criticWIRE | Caryn James calls it Woody Allen's Moveable Feast.

Thompson on Hollywood


The Beaver, Summit | Dir: Jodie Foster, Cast: Mel Gibson, Cherry Jones, Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin, Jennifer Lawrence, Riley Thomas Stewart, Zachary Booth | 70% Tomatometer | 59% Metacritic | B- criticWIRE | TOH! Interviews Foster | Women and Hollywood | Caryn James.

Earthwork, Shadow Distribution | Dir: Chris Ordal, Cast: John Hawkes, Bruce MacVittie, Chris Bachand | LATs calls it "a flawless gem, a gentle yet ultimately ironic meditation on the power of art."

Bloodworth, Samuel Goldwyn Films | Dir: Shane Dax Taylor; Cast: Kris Kristofferson, Val Kilmer, Dwight Yoakam, Hilary Duff | indieWIRE.

Cost of a Soul, Relativity Media | Dir: Sean Kirkpatrick, Cast: Chris Kerson, Will Blagrove, Mark Borkowski, Judy Jerome | indieWIRE.

This article is related to: Box Office, Directors, Franchises, Genres, Headliners, Independents, Studios, Stuck In Love, Reviews, Woody Allen, Critics


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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.