My take: A fun, cool spin on the Star Trek mythos, this movie rewrites the sacred Trek continuity so we can have new adventures of the Enterprise without worrying about the age and health of the original crew. No doubt, this is a fun ride...a glossy, well-executed film that heightens the action and reveals excellent replacements for the people who originally wore the Starfleet uniform. Zachary Quinto is awesome as Spock...his performance is worth the price of admission alone.
Don't see it because: thinking about the plot too much will give you a headache, the original Spock shows up in a little too timely of a fashion, and there's a lot...A LOT...of lens flare!
My take: Crass, crude, and off the wall, The Hangover is the kind of movie guys love to watch together while girlfriends/wives/significant others try unsuccessfully to keep themselves from laughing. The setup is tremendous and the payoff is pretty darn good.
Don't see it because: the language and humor are juvenile and crass and some of the plot elements sound like a brainstorming meeting for a Will Ferrell movie.
My take: Disney and Pixar do it again. Up is a tremendously imaginative and charming ride that's carried just as high as the house that's at the center of the plot.
Don't see it because: While the movie has made its share of money at the box office, my first impression was that kids wouldn't enjoy it very much. The film starts in a slow and melancholy fashion...and to tell you the truth, the setup will probably bore kids...or make them very, very sad.
My take: Inferior to the first movie featuring the heroic Autobots and the evil Decepticons, this one brings back most of the primary characters from the first film. Incredible special effects overwhelm at times while the story lacks focus.
Don't see it because: Despite my overall enjoyment, there's a lot of stupid, juvenile, out-of-place humor that doesn't work; the Fallen baddie is fairly pointless, the so-called Autobot "twins" are annoying, and some of those awesome special effects are so dazzling and confusing, you have no idea what in the hell is actually going on.
My take: Tom Hanks has a much better haircut in this film, making it already more watchable than The Da Vinci Code. This is more of a straight-up murder/thriller with less of a focus on a grand and controversial conspiracy theory.
Don't see it because: the movie is as paint-by-the-numbers as it gets, especially if you've read the book. There's never a sense that Robert Langdon and his partner are in any real danger and the movie packs a lot of dialogue that simply connects the dots for viewers instead of making them think.
My take: For the first time, a Terminator film spends a significant amount of time in the grim future only glimpsed in earlier movies. It's not exactly the future Christian Bale's John Connor expected..and this isn't quite the movie I expected either.
Don't see it because: Bale clearly phoned this one in, the ending is unsatisfying, and the movie seems...to...drag...on...forever in parts. Even though there's a great cameo at the end, it's brief and the novelty quickly wears off. A total disappointment.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine
My take: Wolverine made Hugh Jackman a star...ironic since he wasn't the original choice for the role! When Wolverine himself is on the screen, you can't take your eyes off him...Jackman owns the role. The movie feels like a patchwork of bad ideas crammed together with no particular order or logic. Bad, hammy dialogue and too many characters (all of them underused) make this a task to watch.
Don't see it because: Fox clearly has no idea what to do with its Marvel superhero properties (see X-Men 3: The Last Stand and Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer). This movie is a narrative mess, a confusing mishmash of half-baked ideas and too many characters. Why do we need to see Cyclops in this film? Why does Patrick Stewart appear in some of the most jarring CG work in the history of cinema? How do you screw up a movie starring Hugh Jackman as Wolverine that also includes Liev Schreiber and Ryan Reynolds (two of my personal favorites!)!!??