Day Watch
directed by Timur Bekmambetov
This sequel to 2004’s Night Watch finally sees a limited U.S. release after finding great success in its native Russia last year. For those unfamiliar with the trilogy, the Watch movies are a modern day darkness versus light story about the guardians who make sure the two remain separate. Night Watch was hardly watchable–it just didn’t make a whole lot of sense. Having said that, the sequels (this one and the upcoming Dusk Watch) are rumored to be vast improvements. Let’s hope that’s the case because I’d really hate to have to take down my Anna Kournikova poster over this.

directed by Davis Guggenheim
This is a semi-autobiographical account of Elisabeth Shue’s childhood struggle to play soccer with the boys. In addition to producing with her brother, Andrew, Elisabeth returned to her New Jersey hometown to co-star (with her husband at the helm). We can assume that Gracie will reach its audience and do fairly well. It’s heart-warming in a sense to see a family come together and create art. At the same time, this does seem terribly narcissistic, doesn’t it? On the other hand, you wouldn’t call a memoir narcissistic. Call me a hater.

Knocked Up
directed by Judd Apatow
We here at MM are very excited for Apatow’s latest. We expect this one to be every bit as fun and well received as his previous directing effort, The 40-Year-Old Virgin. In fact, it’s not too bold to suggest that this movie will do for longtime Apatow buddy Seth Rogen what Virgin did for Steve Carell. And where the last one didn’t hit theaters until mid-August, Knocked Up is set to hit the summer market straight on and show serious legs. Its release this week can’t come soon enough for all R-rated comedy lovers.

Mr. Brooks
directed by Bruce A. Evans
Kevin Costner, William Hurt and Dane Cook are all said to show their range in this dark thriller about a mild-mannered businessman (Costner) with a psychotic alter ego (Hurt). Cook plays his devious accomplice. It’s really hard to tell if a film in this genre is any good. Add to that the fact that Costner’s films are uneven at best and Mr. Brooks looks to be a real gamble. But there’s a lot of talent in this cast and something tells us this film is a cut above the competition.

Rise: Blood Hunter
directed by Sebastian Gutierrez
What a terrible, terrible title. It gives me heartburn. Reporter Lucy Liu wakes up in a morgue and realizes she is one of the undead. Then she goes back to reporting the news. I lied. That might actually be a fresh idea for a movie. Instead she takes the predictable course of seeking out the vampire sect who took her life. If this movie were sitting outside the theater in a wheelchair with a little tin cup and a crying infant, I wouldn’t give it my money.

–Kevin McCarthy