60-SECOND FILM REVIEWS

NowShowing

New movies showing in Minneapolis

By Wendy Schadewald (Rating system: 4=Don’t miss, 3=Good, 2=Worth a look, 1=Forget it)

“The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part” (PG) (2) [Some rude humor.] — When his best friend and partner (voiceover by Elizabeth Banks) and some other Lego figurines (voiceovers by Alison Brie, Nick Offerman, Charlie Day, and Stephanie Beatriz ) end up brainwashed on a far distant star system after their earthly world is destroyed in this disappointing, colorful, family-oriented, fast-paced, confusing, 3D, star-studded (voiceovers by Channing Tatum, Jason Momoa, Ralph Fiennes, Bruce Willis, Will Ferrell, Gal Gadot, Margot Robbie, Jonah Hill, Ike Barinholtz, Will Forte, Ben Schwartz, Jimmy O. Yang, and Noel Fielding), sci-fi, animated, 106-minute, musical comedy sequel, a Lego construction worker (voiceover by Chris Pratt) and his alter ego try to stop a wedding between a shape-shifting, Systar queen (voiceover by Tiffany Haddish) and Batman (voiceover by Will Arnett) to prevent Ar-mom-ageddon in the Lego world and in the real world with mother (Maya Rudolph) and fighting siblings (Jadon Sand and Brooklyn Prince).

 

“Miss Bala” (PG-13) (3) [Sequences of gun violence, sexual and drug content, thematic material, and language.] — After a tenacious, savvy, butt-kicking, Mexican-American Los Angeles makeup artist (Gina Rodriguez) goes to Tijuana to visit her longtime best friend (Cristina Rodlo), who has a young son, and she disappears during a shootout at a nightclub in Catherine Hardwicke’s gripping, violent, dark, factually inspired, action-packed, 104-minute remake of the 2011 film, which was Mexico’s entry for the Oscars, she ends up in the hands of unscrupulous Mexican police controlled by a corrupt police chief (Damián Alcázar), a ruthless drug lord (Ismael Cruz Córdova) who forces her to run drugs and money across the border for the cartel, and a callous DEA agent (Matt Lauria) while she desperately searches for her kidnapped friend.

 

 

On DVD

 

“12 Rounds” (PG-13) (2.5) [Intense sequences of violence and action.] [DVD only] — A tenacious New Orleans detective (John Cena) is aided by his longtime partner (Brian J. White) and two FBI agents (Steve Harris and Gonzalo Menendez) after a ruthless, calculating, revenge-fueled, scumbag international arms dealer and diamond smuggler (Aidan Gillen) escapes from prison to retaliate for his incarceration and the accidental death of his sexy girlfriend (Taylor Cole) in this intense, action-packed, fast-paced, 108-minute, 2009 film filled with crashes and bombs where acting takes a backseat to action and the ex-con begins a well-planned cat and mouse game that starts with a car and home explosion and continues with the kidnapping an air ambulance pilot (Ashley Scottt).

 

“Alien Trespass” (PG) (3) [Sci-fi action and brief historical smoking.] [DVD only] — When a menacing, one-eyed alien creature lands in the Mojave Desert in California in 1957 and proceeds to kill locals and threatens a young couple (Andrew Dunbar and Sarah Smyth) scared out of their wits in this deliciously campy, entertaining, 90-minute, 2009 homage to 1950s sci-fi thriller filled with intentionally hokey dialogue and cheesy special effects, a kind alien inhabits the body of a nerdy star-gazing scientist (Eric McCormack) to the confusion of his wife (Jody Thompson) and with the help of a sexy waitress (Jenni Baird) saves mankind while the clueless cops (Robert Patrick, Dan Lauria, et al.) twiddle their thumbs.

 

“Elsa & Fred” (PG) (3.5) [Some mild thematic elements and language.] [Subtitled.] [DVD only] — A touching, heartfelt, romantic, 108-minute, 2005 film about an elderly, hypochondriac widower (Manuel Alexandre) in Madrid who falls head over heels for his flirtatious, impetuous, spirited, 82-year-old Argentinean neighbor (China Zorrilla) to the chagrin of their grown children (Blanca Portillo, Roberto Carnaghi, and Carlos Álvarez-Nóvoa) and fulfills her life-long dream of visiting the Trevi Fountain in Rome.

 

“Fast & Furious” (PG-13) (2.5) [Intense sequences of violence and action, some sexual content, language, and drug references.] [DVD only] — While a tenacious FBI agent (Paul Walker) in Los Angeles hunts down an international drug trafficker (John Ortiz) and his thugs in this fast-paced, action-packed, 113-minute, 2009 thriller filled with speedy cars and lightweight acting, a high-speed racer (Vin Diesel) seeks revenge against a drug-dealing thug who murdered his girlfriend (Michelle Rodriguez).

 

“National Lampoon’s Bagboy” (PG-13) (1.5) [Sexual content, language, and some drug references.] [DVD only] — A silly, tongue-in-cheek, satirical, 94-minute, 2006 spoof about a hard-drinking grocery store owner (Dennis Farina) in Salt Lake City who is encouraged by a beautiful cashier (Marika Dominczyk) to coach his lightning-fast bagger (Paul Campbell) to compete in the world bagging competition against his arrogant rival (Larry Miller) and his cocky bagger (Robert Hoffman).

 

“A Secret” (NR) (3) [Subtitled] [DVD only] — When a Frenchman (Mathieu Amalric) in Paris searches for his missing father in 1985 in this somber, gut-wrenching, well-acted, 105-minute, 2007 Claude Miller film, he reminiscences about living with his parents (Cecile de France and Patrick Bruel) as a sickly young boy (Valentin Vigourt) and a masseuse (Julie Depardieu) who help to cure him from his ills and then revisits the dark family secret about his Jewish half-brother (Orlando Nicoletti) and his mother (Ludivine Sagnier) during Nazi-occupied France.

Film Critic Wendy Schadewald reviewed films in the Twin Cities since 1986, and has been a guest critic on KARE-11’s Showcase Minnesota, WCCO radio, and AMC-950 radio. She reviews more than 250 films annually and has been a film buff for as long as she can remember. To see more of her film reviews, log on to shortredheadreelreviews.com.

©1986 through 2019 by Wendy Schadewald.

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