P2: A woman works late on Christmas eve, only to find herself being stalked and hunted by the kid from American Beauty. Alexandre Aja (who directed High Tension) co-wrote the screenplay with first time director Franck Khalfoun. The movie looks pretty similar to High Tension, and Lord knows that Wes Bentley is good at acting creepy. The reviews thus far have been pretty solid for a horror movie too, especially one that they didn’t bother to release around Halloween. This is playing the United Artists on Court Street.
Lions for Lambs: The television advertising for this new Robert Redford war drama is using a review from Maxim Magazine as their primary selling point. This is not a good sign. Other advanced reviews thus far have been pretty bad for a drama with this kind of star power involved. I predict this one sinking pretty quickly. Despite this, Maxim did say that Meryl Streep gives a “MILF-tastic performance” and that Tom Cruise is “totally awesome and un-weird and shit” in his potrayal of a United States Congressman. This is playing at the Pavilion and the Brooklyn Heights Cinema.
Fred Claus: Ludacris’ agents pitch Fred Claus to him:
Exec 1: Luda, baby, we’ve got an offer for you that you’re going to love.
Exec 2: Let’s just say that it’s the biggest holiday movie of the season. Think Tim Allen in the Santa Clause big. Think Christmas with the Kranks.
Ludacris: Sweet, so it’s a starring role?
Exec 2: ‘Cris, friend, let me just say, you’ve been blowing up the acting spot lately.
Exec 1: Between Crash and Hustle and Flow, you’ve really come into your own.
Ludacris: Well, yeah, I’ve been really focused on getting my acting career off the ground. I’ve been trying hard to land a starring role in something.
Exec 1: Well this movie is called Fred Claus, and it’s about Santa Claus’ brother.
Ludacris: So I’m playing Fred?
Exec 2: Well…no.
Ludacris: I’m playing Santa Claus? I mean, I can put on some weight if the character calls for it.
Exec 1: Your character’s name is DJ Donnie.
Exec 1: You play an elf.
Exec 2: Not an elf, okay? You play the elf.
Exec 1: When I saw the part, I literally shouted your name out loud.
Exec 2: He did. It was very innapropriate.
Exec 1: I couldn’t contain myself. Luda, what do you say? Can we get you fitted for an elf costume?
Ludacris: I hate you guys.
This is playing at the Pavilion and the United Artists on Court Street.
Christmas in Wonderland: I had never heard of this movie, nor have I seen any advertising for it. I’m guessing it’s going to go the way of everyone’s favorite Ben Affleck holiday movie, Surviving Christmas. This one stars SNL alum Chris Kattan, who has actually managed to go downhill from here:
Do you guys want some cookiesss?
No Country for Old Men: This is my pick of the week. Joel and Ethan Coen seem to be going back to their Blood Simple roots after a few less-than-exceptional films (Intolerable Cruelty, The Ladykillers). I made fun of Josh Brolin last week, but he seems to be landing some pretty sweet roles between this and American Gangster. If you had told me a while ago that the third lead in Hollow Man might be nominated for some Oscars, I wouldn’t have believed you. I also wouldn’t have believe that you actually saw Hollow Man. This is playing at the Regal at Union Square.
War/Dance: A documenatary that played at Sundance about three kids living in a displacement camp in Uganda during the Civil War. The kids compete in a national dance competition. This is playing at the Angelika.
I’ll Believe You: Yet another movie being released this week that I had definitely never heard of before today. Something about a radio host who gets a phone call from what everyone believes is an alien. The movie stars some interesting character actors like Patrick Warburton, Chris Elliott, Mo Rocca and Ed Helms. Still, doesn’t sound too interesting.
The midnight movie at the Landmark Sunshine this week is the fantastic New York Stories, directed by Woody Allen, Francis Ford Coppola and Martin Scorcese.