CHICAGO – “Drinking Buddies” director Joe Swanberg’s latest release of the same star wattage is “Happy Christmas,” an even lower-fi story than the Olivia Wilde beer comedy, steered even more by the casting that it was able to assemble. However, with this movie Swanberg doesn’t so much worry about having a story that could be confused with a more mainstream romantic comedy if it were to have a bigger budget.
CHICAGO – Three actors, with three Oscars and an astounding 14 nominations between them, obviously have lost the ability to read a script late in their careers. That or the producers had dirt on them. There is no other reason why Al Pacino, Alan Arkin and Christopher Walken would be the “Stand Up Guys.”
CHICAGO – There are many reasons why “City Island” shouldn’t work. It’s entirely contrived, from one end of the script to the other. Every gargantuan misunderstanding in the film has been spawned by festering lies, the kind that sitcoms have thrived on since the beginning of television. Yet what works in a 23-minute TV sketch often becomes tedious and exasperating when stretched to feature length.
CHICAGO – A blue collar worker father who has a secret Marlon Brando obsession (gasp!), a son with an improbable fetish and a daughter who quits college to…strip, this is a normal day-in-the-life in the new film “City Island.”
CHICAGO – Andy Garcia has a movie star presence, combined with a true appreciation for his profession and craft. He takes on a character role in the upcoming film “City Island,” as a New York borough prison guard who longs to be an actor.
CHICAGO – CBS freshman dramas, and the top two new series, “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “The Good Wife” have been given a full 2009-2010 season pickup.