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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Film Clips: April 10

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Big Bad Wolves Not Rated

Israeli writer/directors Navot Papushado and Aharon Keshales’ second feature, Big Bad Wolves is the brutal follow up to their 2010 feature Kalevet (Rabies). The story centers on the hunt for a serial killer who kidnaps, drugs and decapitates little girls. Gidi (Tzahi Grad), the father of the latest victim and renegade police detective Micki (Lior Ashkenazi), kidnap main suspect Dror (Rotem Keinan) after he is released from jail due to the police mishandling his arrest. Their attempt to make the suspect confess and reveal the whereabouts of Gidi’s daughter quickly turns from interrogation to torture. Attempting to infuse the torture with off-kilter humor that frequently misses its mark, the film ultimately comes off as a pseudo-intellectual torture-flick rather than a character study with a solid narrative. (Jay Peschman)

 

Draft Day PG-13

The Cleveland Browns’ owner (Frank Langella) tells his general manager Sonny Weaver (Kevin Costner) to build a winning team or else. This prompts Sonny to horse trade for the number one pick on NFL Draft day. The gargantuan effort means there’s a phone stuck to Sonny’s head for much of the film. What time remains to him, Sonny spends sharing ideas and romance with gorgeous, younger employee Ali (Jennifer Garner). Sonny has no statistic cruncher to guide his decisions, but he does have a blabbermouth mom (Ellen Burstyn) and a contentious head coach (Denis Leary), who fights Sonny all the way. While Draft Day could be an interesting glimpse into football, the film doesn’t make Sonny’s effort into a sufficiently compelling story. (Lisa Miller)

 

Ladies, Lust, Love Not Rated

Lust versus Love. Who wouldn’t like to know the difference? With her first full-length film, Milwaukee filmmaker Bonnie Janelle works to determine what distinguishes the two. Focused on a group of 12 friends, Ladies, Lust, Love depicts the angst and longing characteristic of relationships we’re drawn to in our late twenties. Though the featured characters are queer, the film’s questions are universal. Is lust worth resisting? Can love be maintained? Where do the two overlap and where do they diverge? In plucking at the threads of each character’s story, Janelle pulls taut a web of interlocking personal realities. (Sarah Terez Rosenblum)

Ladies, Lust, Love debuts Saturday, April 12, at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Show times are 3, 6 and 8 p.m. For tickets, visit ladieslustlove.com.

 

Movie Collectible Show Not Rated

For many years, Dale E. Kuntz has been the genial host of the Charles Allis Art Museum’s “Movie Time” film series. The delightfully low-tech presentation with a projector and cans of actual film is an appropriate way of seeing his program of Golden-Age Hollywood productions, most of them from the 1930s and early ’40s. Kuntz has also kept up his twice-yearly Movie Collectible Show featuring vendors from around the Midwest selling posters, stills, autographs, souvenir gimcracks, coffee table books and (a man of Kuntz’s tastes must cringe) DVDs. (David Luhrssen)

10 a.m.-4 p.m., Sunday, April 13, Burnham Bowl, 6016 W. Burnham St. Admission is $3 for adults, free for children under 12.

 

Oculus R

A decade after the presumed murder-suicide of their parents, brother and sister Tim and Kaylie (Brenton Thwaites and Karen Gillan) are young adults returning to their family home intent upon proving that an antique mirror, known as the Lasser Glass, is responsible for their parents’ deaths. Employing hidden cameras, a dog and a variety of house plants, the pair set out to document that malevolent spirits are using the mirror as a portal into our world. Scripted to draw viewers into the human drama, Oculus employs flashbacks and alternate realities to confuse this brother-sister pair’s perception of events. (L.M.)

 

The Raid 2 R

If the Academy handed out a Most Violent Picture award on Oscar night, The Raid might have won. Does the sequel exceed the original in body count? It’s easy to lose track of the casualties as the Indonesian cop-protagonist goes deep undercover into the underworld. Aside from blood splatter, the action drama also boasts skillful composition, camera set-up, editing and cinematography. The best martial arts sequences have heart-pounding urgency, but with so many killing sprees, the sadistic bloodletting grows mind numbing. (D.L.)

 

Rio 2 G

Blue Macaw couple Blu (voiced by Jesse Eisenberg) and Jewel (Anne Hathaway) are raising their three young chicks in Rio de Janeiro when Jewel learns that a group of rare blue Macaws has been spotted in the Brazilian rain forest and persuades her city-raised husband to embark on a 2,000-mile journey to find them. After surviving perilous encounters with snakes, tarantulas and piranhas, Blu, Jewel and the chicks stumble upon Jewel’s long-lost, presumed-dead family, ruled over by her authoritarian father, Eduardo (Andy Garcia). Threats arise in the forms of Jewel’s childhood friend Roberto (Bruno Mars), now a flirtatious crooner, while the pair’s sworn enemy, Nigel the malevolent cockatoo (Jemaine Clement), schemes to ruin their happiness. Last but not least, the parrots must unite to protect their habitat from deforesting humans. (L.M.)