State of Play
directed by Kevin Macdonald
Based on the BBC miniseries of the same name, State of Play dives into the dark depths of political affairs and investigative journalism. Ben Affleck plays a politician who becomes embroiled in scandal after his research assistant—and mistress—is murdered. Russell Crowe plays the reporter investigating the situation. With Rachel McAdams, Jeff Daniels, Jason Bateman and Helen Mirren also starring in this thriller, the cast alone makes good on the trailer’s promise of intrigue and appeal. Macdonald (The Last King of Scotland) and writers Matthew Michael Camahan, Tony Gilroy and Billy Ray might have something good on their hands, yet with the miniseries being a huge hit, the movie has a lot to live up to.
directed by Burr Steers
Zac Efron stars in something other than High School Musical or Tiger Beat Magazine! While Efron’s first stab at holding up a movie sans singing on his own, his legion of tween fans will flock to the theaters to see this regardless—even if only in hopes that he’ll take his shirt off. (And anyway, he’s got Leslie Mann and Thomas Lennon there for support, so how poorly can things really go?) With Efron playing the 17-year-old version of Matthew Perry’s character, this film seems like it’s been done already. Big, Young Again and even Freaky Friday all have similar premises, so it’ll be interesting to see if Steers and writer Jason Filardi (Bringing Down the House) can give new life to an already played out concept.
Crank: High Voltage
directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor
Jason Statham seems to have become the go-to guy for action movies. From the Transporter trilogy to Crank and Death Race, you know you’re going to get chase scenes and explosions aplenty when he’s on screen—on top of the sex, drugs, violence and profanity, of course. In High Voltage you can expect the same, except this time Chelios (Statham) will be hunting down the Chinese mobster who stole his heart (literally). The Neveldine/Taylor team seems to have created another jam-packed, unrealistic film that resembles a video game or any other ADD-approved form of entertainment. Translation: Action fans will be more than satisfied.