This is Jeff Bayer, and I don't update this site very often. If you'd like to listen to my current movie podcast you can find it at MovieBS.com.

New this Week: 'Sucker Punch' and 'The Tourist (DVD)'

Hitting movie theaters this weekend:

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules - Zachary Gordon, Devon Bostick, Robert Capron Sucker Punch - Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish, Jena Malone, Carla Gugino, Jon Hamm

Movie of the Week

Sucker Punch

The Stars: Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish, Jena Malone, Carla Gugino, Jon Hamm The Plot: A young girl (Browning) is institutionalized by her wicked stepfather. Retreating to an alternative reality as a coping strategy, she envisions a plan which will help her escape from the facility. The Buzz: It’s certainly a great time to be a fifteen-year-old boy, isn’t it? It’s a shame I’m twenty years past my prime -- Sucker Punch would have been 100% pure Pavlovian arousal for me back then. The batch of battling bombshells cartwheeling in all their gorgeously rendered video-game glory, coupled with the film's flawless focus on, and impenetrable belief in, the great escape that can be wrangled through a fully throttled imagination -- Yes, the answer is Y-E-S, in all caps, and with an exclamation point, like so: YES!

I’ve gotta say this looks to be one of the more unique cinematic ventures in quite some time. I'll say too, that this is the first film of 2011 that I'm genuinely super-stoked about!

I'm glad to see that director Zack Snyder appears to be back for the attack. 300 blew me away on all fronts, but Watchmen angered me to an unquenchable wrath, so Sucker Punch, in my own institutionalized fantasyland, represents Snyder’s chance at narrative redemption. I’m pulling for him, and for fanboys everywhere. I want this to be as good as I think it could be, and I hope the “you…will be…unprepared” rings true.

Personally speaking, we're at about an 85% Pavlovian arousal here -- I can only imagine what this film is going to do to the boy of the fifteen-year-old variety.

Every Friday we'll have new reviews of the latest films. TSR's complete Film Review Database

New Blu-ray and DVDs released this week:

Anastasia (BD) - Meg Ryan, John Cusack, Christopher Lloyd The Associate (BD) - Michel Serrault, Claudine Auger, Catherine Alric Dark Fields (DVD) - Brian Austin Jr., Allan Bezanson, Lindsay Dell Elizabeth: Collection (BD) - Cate Blanchett, Geoffrey Rush, Christopher Eccleston How Do You Know (BD/DVD) ( - Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson Meskada (DVD) - Nick Stahl, Rachel Nichols, Kellan Lutz Our Hospitality (BD) - Buster Keaton, Natalie Talmadge, Joe Keaton The People I've Slept With (DVD) - Chris Zylka, Wilson Cruz, Archie Kao Random Hearts (BD) - Harrison Ford, Kristin Scott Thomas, Charles S. Dutton Riddick: Collection (BD) - Vin Diesel, Judi Dench, Colm Feore Robots (BD) - Ewan McGregor, Halle Berry, Mel Brooks The Sandlot (BD) - Tom Guiry, Mike Vitar, Patrick Renna Skyline (BD/DVD) - Eric Balfour, Donald Faison, Scottie Thompson Stand by Me (BD) - Wil Wheaton, River Phoenix, Corey Feldman The Times of Harvey Milk (BD) - Harvey Fierstein, Harvey Milk, Anne Kronenberg The Tourist (BD/DVD) - Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie The Twist (BD) - Bruce Dern, Stéphane Audran, Sydne Rome The Windmill Movie (DVD) - Wallace Shawn, Bob Balaban, Susan Meiselas Yogi Bear (BD/DVD) - Dan Aykroyd, Justin Timberlake, Anna Faris

Blu-ray/DVD of the Week

The Tourist

The Stars: Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie The Plot: An American tourist (Depp) finds his life in danger when a female Interpol agent (Jolie) uses him as a dupe to flush out an elusive criminal. The Buzz: I’m still having a hard time answering the following question: who would I rather spend a day with, Johnny Depp or Angelina Jolie? Sure, change the “day” to “night” and the situation would be simplified by hormonal trappings — but in all seriousness, these are two of the most alluring, charismatic, iconic “beautiful people” working in Hollywood today. Depp is mystifyingly cool, and a brilliant actor. I feel Jolie is about twelve steps below Depp in acting prowess, but she’s just so dang beautiful, and to an exponential degree — and in the end, that’s all she really needs. She’s a good enough actress to float by on her otherworldly confidence (instilled perhaps by her otherworldly beauty?). So, I would obviously love to spend a day with Angelina, but Johnny Depp’s charisma is such a force to be reckoned with, and therein lies the conflict. Do I choose to hang out with an unattainable goddess of pure beauty, or to hang out with the categorically coolest actor this side of Mars? Tough call, certainly — and I’m not going to be able to come up with an answer.

Fortunately, The Tourist comes out this week on BD/DVD, and we’ll all be able to spend a couple hours together with Depp and Jolie.

Despite the general consensus amongst the global populace, I found this film to be an enjoyable romp. It was killed by its own hype, if you ask me. It's beautifully shot and entertaining enough. If you go into this film expecting to be let down, my bet is that you'll like it just fine. I loved Depp’s portrayal of soft nerdiness, his character’s wavy hair, and his general essence of “wilting flower.” Jolie looks amazing, enough said there. The cinematography and filming locations were great. The ending was ehhh, but that's the only real issue I had with it.

I was excited to see this film, back when it was released in December 2010, and even with my expectations somewhat high, I enjoyed it a lot.  I'm looking forward to checking it out again on BD/DVD.

Check out our reviews of these movies and more ... TSR's complete Film Review Database

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