“The CineMagic 8-Ball” – In Theaters 02/08/13

When so many movies are released each week and trailers often seem better than the movie itself, what should one do? In this precarious situation, we consult the The CineMagic 8-Ball (TM) to help us see through the nebulous marketing haze. Doing so just might save us all a disheartening trip to the cinema and spare us the cost of ridiculous concession stand prices. Let’s see what the 8-Ball says about this week’s releases…

——————————————————————————————————————————————-

IDENTITY THIEF 

Mild-mannered businessman Sandy Patterson travels from Denver to Miami to confront the deceptively harmless-looking woman who has been living it up after stealing Sandy’s identity. Bateman and McCarthy have proven themselves as capable comedians and have the chops to carry a film even when their co-stars can’t. Interesting pairing to say the least but while the odd couple road trip has been done to death they hopefully the pair can wring a few new laughs out of the formula.

The CineMagic 8-Ball says: “Outlook Good”

——————————————————————————————————————————————-

SIDE EFFECTS

Emily and Martin are a successful New York couple whose world unravels when a new drug prescribed by Emily’s psychiatrist – intended to treat anxiety – has unexpected side effects. It’s a Soderbergh and even with a pending retirement looming he still knocks his films out of the park. That said while his films are all well-crafted and solid efforts he does get a little too heavy and convoluted. Not to say he’s full of himself or pretentious but his films tend to be a little more serious than they need be. Side Effects is his third film with C-Tate (Channing Tatum) who is becoming a decent actor and Mara was great as Lisbeth Salander but here’s hoping Soderbergh has a little more magic left to make this affair-based drama more than something we’ve seen countless times before.

The CineMagic 8-Ball says: “Outlook Good”

——————————————————————————————————————————————-

A GLIMPSE INSIDE THE MIND OF CHARLES SWAN III

A graphic designer’s enviable life slides into despair when his girlfriend breaks up with him. Simple and innocuous plot right. Well throw in Murray, Schwartzman and Sheen into that or any other narrative and that combination of absurd and surreal comedy can go one of two ways; it’s either gonna be really good or land right on its face. Even if it’s the latter there is something oddly interesting about the trio of leads sharing screentime and that alone should be worth the price…we hope anyway.

The CineMagic 8-Ball says: “Results uncertain. Go with your gut

——————————————————————————————————————————————-

Also hitting theaters this weekend are the WWII drama Lore, Jet Li’s The Sorcerer and the White Snake, the dark coming of age film The Playroom, and Bill Paxton thriller Shanghai Calling. What will you be seeing? If you’ve seen any of these already, please let us know what you thought below.