Movie Reviews: Paper Towns, Pixels, Cartel Land | Buzz Blog

Friday, July 24, 2015

Movie Reviews: Paper Towns, Pixels, Cartel Land

Also: Unexpected, Southpaw, Aloft

Posted By on July 24, 2015, 8:35 AM

  • Pin It
click to enlarge papertowns.jpg
Adaptations of a young-adult bestseller and a two-minute short film join a pair of Sundance 2015 entries among new releases in Utah theaters.

In Pixels, Adam Sandler takes a fun concept—an alien invasion in the form of vintage video-game characters—and applies his now-typical approach of executing it in the laziest manner possible. Paper Towns (pictured) delivers the latest from The Fault in Our Stars author John Green, but the expected teen romance—between a high school student (Nat Wolff) and his dream girl (Cara Delevingne)—turns instead into a charming tale of teen friendship. The documentary Cartel Land tries to explore the drug trade from both sides of the U.S./Mexico border, but winds up with only half of a fascinating narrative. Aloft proves to be far too literal at applying its chilly, remote setting to the story of a faith healer (Jennifer Connelly) and the estranged son (Cillian Murphy) trying to track her down.

Danny Bowes finds the appeal of the central relationship in Unexpectedbetween a white teacher (Cobie Smulders) and her black student (Gail Bean) both coping with unplanned pregnancies—overcoming a script that's sometimes overwritten and dramatically slight.

In this week's feature review, the familiar rags-to-riches arc of an underdog boxing narrative gets an effective twist to match Jake Gyllenhaal's strong lead performance in Southpaw.

On Topic...

More by Scott Renshaw

Latest in Buzz Blog


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

© 2018 Salt Lake City Weekly

Website powered by Foundation