my week at the movies: ‘Gentlemen Broncos,’ ‘Michael Jackson’s This Is It,’ ‘Creation,’ ‘Fantastic Mr. Fox,’ ‘The Fourth Kind,’ ‘Pirate Radio’ (aka ‘The Boat That Rocked’), ‘Collapse’

Busy, busy week. And awards season hasn’t quite hit yet (though screeners are starting to come). It’s gonna be a crazy couple months…

Most hilarious title ever? Gentlemen Broncos (opens in the U.S. on October 30; no U.K. release date has been announced) looks to be a hoot… and I do really like Jared Hess’s other flicks, Napoleon Dynamite and Nacho Libre. So pretty please, let this one be as oddball amusing, too.

Sony is withholding press screenings of Michael Jackson’s This Is It (opens all over the damn planet on October 28) till tomorrow evening — which is, as I mentioned earlier today, the same time the film will premiere in Los Angeles, just hours before public showings begin at midnight. Now, surely there is nothing that a critic could say, not even Roger Ebert, that would keep diehard fans away. So what is Sony afraid of? That we’ll reveal the secret ending? Doesn’t everyone already know Jackson is dead? Or is there a different surprise ending? (Cue the conspiracy theories — it’s fun!)

I missed the opportunity to see Creation when I was in England a few weeks ago (it’s still playing there), but I’ll have my chance now: though no U.S. release date has been set, it’s starting to screen for critics, which almost certainly means at least a limtied U.S. release before the end of the year and the hopes of getting some awards love. It’ll be interesting to watch if — and how — the furor over the film from the reality-deniers ramps up…

A planet where foxes evolved from men? No, it’s just Fantastic Mr. Fox (now playing in the U.K.; opens in the U.S. on November 13), the latest insanity from Wes Anderson, and the first animated insanity. I’m thinking it could be The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou meets Wallace and Gromit. That would be cool.

Aliens are coming to get us! While we sleep! (Whitley Streiber, call your office.) If this were five hundred years ago, we’d be making movies about evil fairies kidnapping us to probe us anally — but it’s today, so we get The Fourth Kind (opens in the U.S. on November 6; no U.K. release date has been announced). Things have always gone bump in the night; it’s just what kind of things are going bump that change.

They changed the name from The Boat That Rocked, the title under which it was released in the U.K. earlier this year, to Pirate Radio, maybe because it kinda tanked in the U.K. The movie already looks kinda cool to me, but I do have to admit that Pirate Radio is a snappier title. The Boat That Rocked could be about someone who got seasick. (The Boat That Rocked is already available on DVD in Region 2; Pirate Radio opens in the U.S. on November 13.)

Collapse (opens theatrically in New York on November 6, and will be available on demand across the U.S. on the same day; no U.K. release date has been announced) is the new documentary from Chris Smith about how the world is going to shit around us, economically speaking. And since Smith gave us such snarky, acidic docs as American Movie and The Yes Men, I expect something just as tart and biting from this one.

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