Weekend Movie Preview: February 8, 2013

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The weekend movie preview this week only has two new films arriving, Side Effects and Identity Thief, and one in limited release. The two major releases could not be more different. So, if you're in the mood for a psychological thriller or a heartfelt comedy, you are covered. Also, opening in New York and Los Angeles (and available currently on iTunes and VOD) is the latest film (and best?) from Charlie Sheen.

Side Effects: Director Steven Soderbergh has claimed that this film will be his last for some time. If that is indeed the case, he is going out on top... as we reported in our Side Effects review. The cast is stellar including Jude Law, Rooney Mara, Channing Tatum and Catherine Zeta Jones. Scott Z. Burns' screenplay crackles with tension and twists around every corner. The film is an old fashioned psychological thriller, a genre we don't get too many solid movies in anymore.

Identity Thief: Melissa McCarthy and Jason Bateman are a dream team in the heartfelt comedy that is as timely as it is hilarious. McCarthy is the titular character who steals more than just Bateman's money... his life is practically ruined. Bateman decides if he can personally bring her to justice, then he can clear his name much faster than the authorities can. This is in no way a drawback, but one should know that the film isn't a balls-to-the-wall comedy as much as a funny character study and further proof that McCarthy is quickly becoming America's new sweetheart. Check out my Identity Thief review for more.

A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III: Charlie Sheen gives his best performance in decades as the title character who is sent into a deep evaluation of his life after his longtime love kicks him out of the home they share. The film from Roman Coppola has a Wes Anderson feel, and that is largely due to him sharing the man's DP as well as some of Anderson's favorite actors including Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman. As we reported in our A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III review, the movie is one of the first big surprises of 2013.

And get ready for a blockbuster week coming up... Valentine's Day finds Safe Haven, A Good Day to Die Hard and Beautiful Creatures hitting theaters, followed by the animated family film Escape From Planet Earth landing the next day, February 15.

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