The end of the summer movie season is almost upon us, with two weekends remaining. This second-to-last weekend has three major releases hitting theaters: Two action flicks -- Premium Rush and Hit and Run (the latter with a bit of romance) -- and a horror flick in The Apparition that turns the haunted house genre on its head.
Can any of them unseat Sylvester Stallone and The Expendables 2 from atop the box office? Movie Fanatic thinks no, but at least audiences have three new choices for their late summer thrill fix.
Premium Rush: Joseph Gordon-Levitt is a New York City bike messenger whose life is threatened repeatedly as he criss-crosses the city streets possessing a package with a secret. It's one that someone wants for personal reasons and another (Michael Shannon) seeks to be destroyed before the truth ruins him. As discussed in our Premium Rush review, the film shows action on the City’s streets unlike any we’ve ever seen, but we wanted a little more.
The Apparition: Screenwriter-director Todd Lincoln gets credit for trying to add something new to the often repeated formulas of the horror genre. Ashley Greene and Sebastian Stan are a young couple who move into an Arizona house that appears to be haunted. Lincoln raises the question: What if the house is not haunted, but an individual is? The Apparition review gives props to Lincoln for an original idea, yet fails to find too much that frights.
Hit and Run: If you had said that the best film of the weekend would be from writer-director-star Dax Shepard weeks ago… Movie Fanatic would have said you were crazy. Yet, he and his real-life fiance, Kristen Bell, combine to create electric screen chemistry in a film that is equal parts romance, thriller and crime tale. Toss in Shepard’s own suped-up car, Bradley Cooper's insanely effective villain, and as we state in our Hit and Run review... this film is a winner.