April 19, 2014

Hollywood Movie Roundup: ‘Jackass 3D,’ ‘Red’ duke it out

HollywoodNews.com: Box office bean counters are foreseeing another faceoff at the box office between Paramount’s MTV eight-year old franchise “Jackass 3D” and Summit Entertainment’s comic book shoot ‘em up “Red” starring Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren, Morgan Freeman and John Malkovich.

“Jackass” is predicted to bring in about $30 million, while “Red” could see north of $25 million.

“Jackass” follows Johnny Knoxville and his crew as they perform ridiculous ‘don’t do this at home’ stunts. The upside in this third installment: It’s all in your face. Paramount spent only $20 million on the film and it looks to be a huge cash cow for the studio.

Critics gave “Jackass” a kick in the butt with a 59% rotten score, but it doesn’t matter – the film isn’t for them, rather young guys. Variety’s Justin Chang actually likes the film, exclaiming, “Few suffer as cheerfully for their art as Johnny Knoxville and his band of scatological stuntmeisters, and the gut-busting pleasure they take in every act of self-humiliation proves as infectious as ever.”

“Red” is based on a DC comic book about a group of retired CIA agents and killers who are framed and forced to break into agency headquarters. Mary Louise Parker also stars. Summit is looking at their best film opening outside it’s “Twilight” franchise. The studio shelled out about $60 million for the film. Currently, “Red” is tracking to hook adults over 35. Critics are enjoying the explosions, awarding it a 69% fresh on the Tomatometer. John DeFore of the Hollywood Reporter praises “Red” saying “Although tailor-made for genre fans, it benefits from flavors of humor and romance that keep its appeal from being fanboy-only.”

Clint Eastwood’s Warner Bros. supernatural drama “Hereafter” unspools in six theaters in Los Angeles, New York and Toronto before going wide next weekend. The film, starring Matt Damon and Bryce Dallas Howard, follows a blue collar U.S. worker, a French journalist and a London school boy who are impacted by death in mysterious ways. Critics are giving it a 60% fresh score. Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times says, “Hollywood once upon a time made films exploring these kinds of issues, but in today’s climate only a filmmaker like Eastwood, determined to never do the same thing twice, would have the nerve and the clout to take it on.”

Fox Searchlight is bowing in limited release “Conviction” starring Sam Rockwell and Hilary Swank. Swank plays Betty Anne Waters, a housewife who puts herself through law school because she believes in her heart that her jailed brother (Rockwell) is innocent of murder. Minnie Driver and Melissa Leo also star. Critics are giving it a 59% rotten score, but Wall Street Journal’s Joe Morgenstern sees the film’s upside: “The quality of the acting is consistently high and Mr. Rockwell’s crackling energy goes a long way toward compensating for the film’s predominantly earnest tone.”

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Photo credit: Paramount, Summit and Warner Bros.

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