Richard speaks to “CTV News at 11:30” anchor Andria Bain about TV shows to watch this weekend including two with Rosamund Pike, the Marie Curie biopic “Radioactive” on Crave and the dark comedy “I Care a Lot” on Amazon Prime Video, the Disney+ kid’s flick “Flora & Ulysses” and the tearjerker “Supernova” starring Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci on VID.
Richard joins CP24 to have a look at new movies coming to VOD, streaming services and theatres including the mean-spirited crime dramedy “I Care a Lot” (Amazon Prime Video in Canada), the heartfelt drama “Supernova” (Apple TV app, and everywhere you rent or buy movies) and the kid’s flick Flora & Ulysses (Disney+).
Richard sits in on the CTV NewsChannel with host Marcia MacMillan to have a look at the new movies coming to VOD, streaming services and theatres including the mean-spirited crime dramedy “I Care a Lot” (Amazon Prime Video in Canada) and the kid’s flick Flora & Ulysses (Disney+).
Richard sits in on the CFRA Ottawa morning show with host Bill Carroll to talk the new movies coming to theatres, VOD and streaming services including the mean-spirited crime dramedy “I Care a Lot” (Amazon Prime Video in Canada), the heartfelt drama “Supernova” (Apple TV app, and everywhere you rent or buy movies) and the kid’s flick Flora & Ulysses (Disney+).
“Flora & Ulysses,” the new Disney+ comedy-adventure based on the Newbery Award-winning book of the same name by Kate DiCamillo, is about what happens when a ten-year-old rescues Ulysses, a squirrel with a lot of personality who also just might have superpowers.
When self-described cynic and comic book fan Flora (Matilda Lawler), a lonely girl who lives with her romance writer mother (Alyson Hannigan), rescues a squirrel from a neighbor’s robotic vacuum, both their lives are transformed.
Flora, who pines for the days when her parents were together, finds a friend in her new pet. The rodent, who announces his powers by typing, “Squirrel. I am Ulysses. Born anew,” on mom’s old-school Smith Corona, chips away at Flora’s hardened exterior. “Maybe the best part of having a superhero around,” she says, “is how you start to feel like one too.” The unlikely duo, along with Flora’s father (Ben Schwartz), a failed-comic-book-writer who makes ends meet working retail, and temporarily blind neighbor William (Benjamin Evan Ainsworth) go on adventures despite mom’s disdain for having a squirrel in the house, even one who can write poetry.
“Flora & Ulysses” may be the only kid’s flick to quote intense German poet Rainer Maria Rilke. The film’s central message—Flare up like a flame and find your purpose—is paraphrased from Rilke’s abstract “Go to the Limits of Your Longing.” But don’t worry, there’s nothing terribly abstract or heady about the super squirrel story. Director Lena Khan has made a family friendly film that balances comedy, action and even some melancholy.
The superhero in this movie isn’t here to save the world or battle villains from other planets, but the stakes are just as high. Ulysses doesn’t wear spandex or have x-ray eyes, instead he’s a symbol of hope and the power of love in friendship and family. Those are nice messages, well delivered by a game cast, particularly Lawler, who nails her character’s droll humour.
“Flora & Ulysses” is a story about the small, heroic things we can do in day-to-day life. Uplifting and charming, it avoids easy sentiment and there’s even a good “Titanic” joke.
Who says there isn’t truth in advertising? The cover of the DVD case for Date Movie says, “from 2 of the 6 writers of Scary Movie.” If you surmised that the slogans means the movie is only one third as funny as any of the Scary Movies you’d be right. Date Movie pokes fun at romantic comedies, adding a gross-out twist to your favorite scenes from When Harry Met Sally, The Wedding Planner and My Big Fat Greek Wedding, a formula that works well when the Scary Movie franchise sends up horror films but is less successful here.
Date Movie is likely to end up on many “worst of lists” come the end of the year, and with good reason. If you must rent this one over the weekend at least do yourself the favor of ignoring the full-length movie and checking out the extra on the disc called “The Quickie” which zips through the movie in just six minutes. You’ll never get those six minutes back, but at least it saves you from wasting 85 minutes of your life on this unfunny pap.
In the latest installment of the “American Pie” franchise it’s the thirteenth high school reunion for some very recognizable characters—Jim, Oz, Kevin, Stifler, Finch, Vicky (Tara Reid) and Michelle. The question is, Will their 13th anniversary be bad luck for them, the movie’s viewers, or both?
Since graduation in 1999 the old gang has gone their separate ways. Jim (Jason Biggs) and Michelle (Alyson Hannigan) are married with a son. Oz (Chris Klein) is an LA based sportscaster who once appeared on a a reality dance show, Kevin (Thomas Ian Nicholas) is a stay-at-home dad, Stifler (Seann William Scott) is an office temp and Finch (Eddie Kaye Thomas) is a man of mystery.
Their weekend back in East Great Falls, Michigan brings back old memories, creates some new ones and uncovers some long held secrets.
As you may have guessed from my synopsis, plot is not one of “’s” strong points. I expected something more from “Harold and Kumar” helmers Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg, who also wrote and directed “Reunion.” None of the surreal feel of their best-known comedy seeped into this movie.
Instead we get a by-the-numbers high school reunion flick with enough “we’re not as young as we used to be” shtick to fill a textbook on how not to write a high school reunion comedy.
Luckily Eugene Levy is along for the ride. He rescues every scene he’s in, adding in some touches of real humor. Ditto Seann William Scott as Stifler. He’s a classic moron character, but there is something about the commitment Scott shows to Stifler’s idiocy that makes the shameless mugging and language one of the movie’s pleasures.
Aside from that only one set piece really works—an extended sequence with a drunken girl young enough to call the Spice Girls “classic rock.”
As for the cast, everyone is in full-blown “American Pie” mode, à la 1999. No surprises there, although the movie could easily have been subtitled, “What Ever Happened to Tara Reid?” She has a small supporting role that plays more like a cautionary tale of faded success than a comeback role in a Hollywood movie.
At almost two hours it feels longer than my old history teacher Mr. Parker’s lectures, but may appeal to fans of the series who have a built in connection with the characters and Eugene Levy aficionados. Otherwise, this is a direct to DVD level movie with not enough laughs to qualify for theatrical release.