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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

my week at the movies: ‘Edge of Darkness,’ ‘Extraordinary Measures,’ ‘Tooth Fairy,’ ‘Legion’

So, I watched the 1985 BBC miniseries Edge of Darkness [Amazon U.S.] [Amazon Canada] [Amazon U.K.] upon which this new movie of the same name (opens in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. on January 29) is based, and I quite enjoyed it. Of course, it’s a six-hour character-driven drama, and the new movie — oddly enough, from the same director, Martin Campbell — is a two-hour, action-driven thriller, so we can expect significant differences. Not the least of which is sure to be Mel Gibson getting his crazy on. (Bob Peck, aka the game warden in Jurassic Park, stars in the 1985 version.)

Have you heard? Harrison Ford is already working around the clock! His Extraordinary Measures (opens in the U.S. and Canada on January 22, and in the U.K. on February 26) are all in the aid of helping babies. When someone wails, “Won’t someone think of the children?!” you can tell them that Harrison Ford has the babies’ backs.

If Tooth Fairy (opens in the U.S. and Canada on January 22, and in the U.K. on May 28) didn’t look, on its own face, like something to make you weep with despair, know this: director Michael Lembeck also gave us the colossal fail that is Connie and Carla. So if you thought that The Rock as a magical pixie sounded like an awful idea, know this: It’s likely to be even worse.

How would you feel if you were Scott Stewart, and you’d been slaving away on FX teams for years and finally got the chance to direct your own movie — as Stewart got with Legion (opens in the U.S. and Canada on January 22, and in the U.K. on February 5) — only to have the studio withhold the film from critics before it opens? (Legion is the first cold opening of 2010, a dubious distinction if ever there was one.) Would you kick yourself for having made a movie the studio itself — your employer — doesn’t even believe in? Or would you be mad at the studio for not giving you whatever support you needed to make a movie good enough to withstand the assessments of those who love movies most?



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movie buzz
  • Legion is CHUD’s pick of the week, so that’s good. I can’t wait to see it.

  • Anne-Kari

    I know it’s neither here nor there, but MAJ, have you noticed the new ads that Syfy is running for Caprica (premiere is this week)? It reeks of desperation, exploitation and, quite frankly, ickiness:

    http://www.multichannel.com/article/444651-Syfy_s_Caprica_Sampled_By_1_5_Million.php

  • MaryAnn

    The apple-and-Eve ad? Yeah, that’s gonna feature in my Week in Women column this week…

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