my week at the movies: ‘The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus,’ ‘Trucker,’ ‘Couples Retreat,’ ‘Motherhood,’ ‘Red Cliff,’ ‘Capitalism: A Love Story’

I’m stoked for my very early screening this week of The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus (opens in the U.K. on October 16, and in the U.S. on December 25), Terry Gilliam’s new movie and Heath Ledger’s last. I’m avoiding reading the reviews from Cannes, but I am intrigued to see how Gilliam manages to work Ledger’s “replacements” — Johnny Depp, Jude Law, and Colin Farrell — into the story and still make it work. Knowing Gilliam’s peculiar talents, it’ll likely turn out bizarre indeed.

I saw Trucker (opens in the U.S. on October 9; no U.K. release date has been announced yet) at the Tribeca Film Festival a year and a half ago, and I loved it: Michelle Monaghan’s performance is spectacular, and writer-director James Mottern has given us an uncompromising look at an uncompromising woman. So it’s hardly a chore to see it again before I write my review (and I do need a refresher on some of the details).

I’ve already said pretty much all I have to say about Couples Retreat (opens in the U.S. on October 9, and in the U.K. on October 14) until I see it.

Uma Thurman is that rare urban creature — the stay-at-home mom — in Motherhood (opens in the U.S. on October 23; no U.K. release date has been announced). I’m hoping that the fact that the film is written and directed by a woman, Katherine Dieckmann, means that it will show slightly more insight into this particular situation than we might otherwise expect. *fingers crossed*

Red Cliff (opens in the U.S. on November 20; it is already available on Region 2 DVD in the U.K.) is John Woo’s new flick, an historical actioner about a second-century battle that Chinese scholars celebrate as a masterpiece of strategy and ingenuity.

I missed the only NYC press screening of Michael Moore’s Capitalism: A Love Story (now playing in the U.S.; no U.K. release date has been announced), so I’ll catch up with it this week. I expect to come out angry…

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