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die hard is a xmas movie | by maryann johanson

my week the movies: ‘The Ugly Truth,’ ‘New Orleans, Mon Amour,’ ‘The Answer Man,’ ‘Orphan,’ ‘Bliss,’ ‘Adam’

Get it? It is a truth universally acknowledged that men love with their dicks and women love with their brains. Everyone just knows this. I’m not sure if we should take this as an indication that the people involved in making this movie actually genuinely don’t understand that people are wildly individualistic and so figure that it’s best to run with the most general and simplistic stereotypes of the way some examples of both genders behave… or if they really do think that this kind of stereotyping will appeal to audiences because they think most people identify with this. The ugly truth about The Ugly Truth (opens in the U.S. on July 24 and the U.K. on August 7) is probably that someone thinks this is witty. It looks preposterous and stupid to me, and that’s why I’m official Dreading it.

Crap, I’ve had a screener of New Orleans, Mon Amour sitting around here forever, and I’ve never found the time to watch it even though my boy Christopher Eccleston stars in it (it also features Elisabeth Moss from Mad Men). Now, though, the movie has skipped right over a theatrical release and gone direct to VOD on the new Cinetic Film Buff (according to Variety), and later will be available on iTunes and Amazon VOD. So I really must make time to watch it this week…

Speaking of video on demand, this is happening more and more: Movies are debuting on VOD before they get a small theatrical release. The Answer Man is one of those. It’s already available on Amazon VOD — though I think $9.99 is a bit steep for a 48-hour rental, even if it is in advance of the theatrical release — and it premieres on HDNet Movies this Wednesday, July 22. HDNet sent me a screener, and although I tend to feel that movies should be seen on a big screen, this is a movie that most people will only see on a small screen, because the theatrical release the film is getting, starting on July 24, will be very small. Most who see this film will see it on their TVs, so I will see it that way too. (No U.K. release date has been announced yet.)

I’m sort of stunned that Orphan (opens in the U.S. on July 24, and in the U.K. on August 7) is screening for critics at all… though I won’t see it till Wednesday night, which about as close to “not screening at all” as you can get. You can guess why it’s being kept under wraps, I think…

Bliss (Mutluluk) (opens in the U.S. on August 7; no U.K. release date has been announced) is a Turkish film about the repulsive practice of “honor killing.” Should be a brutal experience.

A man with Asperger’s Syndrome gets friendly with his beautiful neighbor in the indie Adam (opens in the U.S. on July 29, and in the U.K. on August 7). Here’s hoping that Hugh Dancy and Rose Byrne can overcome the Rain Man vibe.



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