This first weekend of November finds our Weekend Movie Preview quite busy. There are five films arriving in theaters and they are star-studded to say the least.
Harrison Ford returns to space for the first time since Star Wars in Ender's Game while four Oscar winners appear in the same movie for the first time in Last Vegas. The kids will adore watching the turkeys try to change history in the animated gem Free Birds, and Diana gets the biopic treatment starring Naomi Watts.
And then there's Dallas Buyers Club, a film that promises an Oscar nod for each of its stars... Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto.
Ender's Game: Ford returns to sci-fi as the leader of a fighter pilot school that trains young teens to become our most valued asset in a battle against alien invaders. Asa Butterfield goes note-for-note with Ford and commands as the title character, the person who Ford's Colonel Graff feels is "the one" to end this war once and for all. Complications ensue, and as we state in our Ender's Game review, this is one film that will make lovers of the book quite happy as well as enthrall those who are discovering the story for the first time.
Last Vegas: Four Oscar winners star in one movie... astounding! Robert De Niro, Kevin Kline, Michael Douglas and Morgan Freeman are four old friends who gather in Sin City to celebrate the wedding of Douglas' character. As reported in our Last Vegas review, this is a comedy with heart that goes down like fine wine. These four superstars know exactly what notes to hit and do it impeccably. Also, a fifth Oscar winner steals scenes as Mary Steenburgen stars as one of their love interests. But for whom?!
Free Birds: Owen Wilson, Amy Poehler and Woody Harrelson voice a trio of turkeys in this animated holiday film that our Free Birds review reported will easily charm both young and old. Wilson and Harrelson's characters commandeer a time machine and head back to the first Thanksgiving in an effort to get turkey off the holiday menu forever. Poehler is a fine fowl whom they meet back in the 1600s who may hold the key to their mission being a success.
Dallas Buyers Club: McConaughey stars as Ron Woodroof, the real-life renegade who was diagnosed with HIV early in the disease's history. Instead of sitting at home waiting to die, he became the most unlikely of advocates. He sought to help AIDS patients have access to the most effective drug treatments out there, even if that went against the medical lobby, the pharmaceutical business and the FDA. Our Dallas Buyers Club review also stressed that McConaughey isn't the only one who lost a lot of weight to score in the role of a lifetime. Leto rivets in the most heartbreaking and simultaneously uplifting of performances.
Diana: Watts is Princess Diana in a film that chronicles her search for love in the final years of her life. It is a mixed message movie as we, on one hand, are completely entranced by the "People's Princess" and, on the other hand, are repulsed by how her jealousy invited the world of vicious paparazzi in what would ultimately lead to her death. Our Diana review said that the film feels a little long, but is a worthy look at the life of someone the world thought they knew.