This first weekend movie preview of April finds one of the better remakes we've seen in some time (Evil Dead), the return of movie icon Robert Redford (The Company You Keep), the 3D upgrade of a classic (Jurassic Park) and Slumdog Millionaire's director exploring hypnosis for thrills in the heist drama Trance. Oh, and there's a little black comedy that finds that pain equals monetary gain (The Brass Teapot).
Evil Dead: Director Fede Alvarez could be called crazy for trying to remake a classic. But, who's looking brilliant now? As we stated in our Evil Dead review, the latest film in the franchise is astoundingly terrifying and worthy of carrying on the film's moniker. Jane Levy stars as Mia, a woman who is grappling with drug addiction. She heads out to her family's cabin with her brother and friends to try to kick the habit. Only thing is when weird things begin to happen it is at first believed to be side effects of withdrawal. In fact, they are revealed to be a demonic force that threatens the soul of everyone involved.
Trance: Danny Boyle has done it again. His psychological thriller stars James McAvoy as a London art auction expert who may or may not be involved in the heist of a $25 million painting. There is one problem for both the crooks and the cops... during the robbery he hit his head and now has amnesia. Since he can't remember anything... he visits a hypnotherapist (Rosario Dawson) and tries to unlock the secrets to our mystery. As reported in our Trance review, the film is riveting, intense and a must-see.
Jurassic Park 3D: Steven Spielberg has achieved one of the best 3D conversions ever with bringing his classic to life in three dimensions. The crux of our Jurassic Park 3D review extols the virtues of this masterpiece and how it was miraculously shot by Spielberg back in the day, almost knowing he would convert it to 3D one day. That day has arrived, and the beneficiary is the audience. This is one film not to be missed on the big screen. And might we suggest... you see it in IMAX.
The Company You Keep: Redford returns to the directing chair for the first time since 2010 and also stars in the story of 1960's radicals who are being tracked down as the modern FBI has zeroed in on their locations. Redford and his co-stars Susan Sarandon, Sam Elliott and Julie Christie were part of a violent anti-war group that killed a security guard during a bank robbery. Also dazzling in the film, as we state in our The Company You Keep review, is upstart Shia LaBeouf as an investigative journalist. The film stalls at times, but fans of the older actors will be thrilled to see them at their best.
The Brass Teapot: Juno Temple stars in the black comedy that shows that sometimes where there's pain, there's monetary gain. The small film will be released in limited theaters, but as we report in our The Brass Teapot review, it is good fun... even if those in the film are routinely getting hurt for profit.