April Reviews // Music

Life of Pi (2012)
Fox 2000 Pictures
Starring Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Adil Hussain
ec‘s grade: A+

After young Pi Patel’s father decides to sell his zoo, he and his family – and quite a few of the zoo’s residents – find themselves undertaking the arduous oceanic journey from India to Canada. The ship never makes it, though; when the ship goes down amid a storm, Pi is finds himself in a wooden lifeboat . . . with a tiger, a zebra, an orangutan and a hyena. What unfolds next is a riveting survival story beautifully brought to life by master director Ang Lee, full of discoveries about determination, sacrifice, faith, and God. Based on the award-winning 2001 novel by Yann Martel.
Rated PG for emotional thematic content throughout, and some scary action sequences and peril.

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 Parental Guidance (2012)
20th Century Fox, Walden Media
Starring Billy Crystal, Bette Midler, Marisa Tomei
ec‘s grade: C-

Synopsis: Work calls a yuppy couple away for the weekend, and when the grandparents are left with babysitting duty, parenting styles collide.
Pros: Mostly clean comedy about family and raising kids
Cons: Some suggestive jokes; humor appeals more to parents than teens
Rated PG for rude humor.

The Guilt Trip (2012)
Paramount Pictures
Starring Barbra Streisand, Seth Rogen
ec‘s grade: C

Synopsis: On an impromptu cross-country road trip, Andy Brewster (Seth Rogen) and his overbearing mother (Barbra Streisand) find humor—and surprises—where they least expect.
Pros: Some positive messages about mother-son relationships, forgiveness and love
Cons: Some crude language and humor taint an otherwise sweet premise
Rated PG-13 for language and risqué material.

Frankenweenie (2012)
Walt Disney Pictures
Voices of Catherine O’Hara, Martin Short, Martin Landau
ec‘s grade: B

Synopsis: Director Tim Burton (Nightmare Before Christmas) is up to his stop-motion animation tricks again in this sweet-but-a-little-creepy tale of a boy who reanimates his beloved pooch after he is killed.
Pros: Uniquely stylized visuals and heartfelt messages of love and the tricky ethics of science
Cons: Burton’s signature dreary tone may frighten younger audiences
Rated PG for thematic elements, scary images and action.

Premium Rush (2012)
Pariah
Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Dania Ramirez, Sean Kennedy
ec‘s grade: C+

Synopsis: Bike courier Wilee finds himself embroiled in a web of treachery and danger when the package he’s carrying turns out to have deadly implications.
Pros: Intense action and some cool chase scenes
Cons: Rough language throughout; some suggestive humor
Rated PG-13 for some violence, intense action sequences and language.

Alex Cross (2012)
QED International, Block
Starring Tyler Perry, Edward Burns, Matthew Fox
ec‘s grade: F

Synopsis: Tyler Perry stars as the title character, a tenacious detective on the trail of a sadistic killer, in this adaptation of the James Patterson novel series.
Pros: Very, very few
Cons: Needlessly excessive content that pushes bounds of PG-13 rating; weak adaptation, even weaker performances
Rated PG-13 for violence including disturbing images, sexual content, language, drug references and nudity.

 

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