In Theatres: Boy Next Door; Mortdecai; Cake (VIDEO)

Jennifer Aniston sheds The Rachel for a dramatic turn in 'Cake'. Johnny Depp copies and pastes Peter Sellers with Mortdecai

Jennifer Lopez stars as a mother in teacher in trouble with a neighbourly one-night stand in 'Boy Next Door'.



Opening in theatres this week…

  • Jennifer Lopez has a one night stand with an obsessed high school student in Boy Next Door
  • Jennifer Aniston’s near-Oscar-winning performance in Cake
  • Johnny Depp travels the world as an art dealer in Mortdecai, co-starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Ewan McGregor, and Olivia Munn

Video: The Canadian Press

**********

Cake

Jennifer Aniston was getting plenty of Oscar and Golen Globe-y buzz for her role in Cake, as a woman suffering through something which looks an awful lot like depression.

She’s going through some stuff, basically.

But while those roles are always Academy bait – “it’s wonderful to see an actress test herself by taking the chances that Aniston does here – and, what’s more, to see her pass that test with such flying colors,” writes NOLA‘s Mike Scott – the film was reeled in only a boot, so far.

It’s got a sloppy 47 per cent on Rotten Tomatoes, even Scott gave it a tempered 3/5 stars, and reviews have been mixed – with most positivity centering on Aniston’s performance.

“Her instincts in Friends were dead perfect, but the problem with comic stars who tackle serious, Oscar-bait roles is that they tend to downplay their gifts,” writes Vulture‘s David Edelstein. “So the hot, funny woman drabs herself down and dulls her timing. What’s missing is the attack.

“This Cake isn’t fallen. It’s just a bit deflated.”

Cake premiered to much fanfare at the Toronto International Film Festival, and the movie makes its North American box office debut tonight, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Mortdecai

Johnny Depp joins along with Gwyneth Paltrow for Mortdecai, which appears (from first glance) to be a decently enjoyable vehicle for two actors who are 10 years past their most famous.

Paltrow peaked in 1998 with Shakespeare in Love, and in the decade before and after that. And Depp of course rose to superstardom with Pirates of the Caribbean in 2003.

But like 2010’s The Tourist – which starred Depp and another early 2000’s supernova Angelina Jolie as adults manoeuvring a childish script and the dining cars of European trains – Mortdecai is falling flat at the press, with just a 15 per cent approval on Rotten Tomatoes.

But just maybe, it deserves a break…

“Mortdecai isn’t particularly funny, but it’s also not the Pistachio Disguisey 2015 train wreck the Internet has spent the last few months anticipating. It’s brainless, but it’s painless,” writes Grantland‘s Alex Pappademas.

But the ESPN culture writer doesn’t shy away from blasting the movie, mainly focusing on Depp’s performance. Pappademas likens his role as Charlie Mortdecai, a flamboyant art dealer trapped in a pre-modern personality, as “a tribute-band Peter Sellers”.

“A few weeks ago, The Interview brought us to the brink of all-out cyberwar with North Korea; if England’s hacker community has any national pride, we should brace for a digital 1812, because Johnny Depp’s performance as an upper-crust twit in Mortdecai is Britface at its most slanderous.”

Boy Next Door

People magazine believes you should watch Jennifer Lopez’s latest, the story of an attractive mom who had a one-night stand with a younger man who turns out to be one of her high school students. And he gets obsessed. (It’s like To Die For, but she’s not evil, I guess.)

But People is in the minority here.

“You see where this is going, right? Of course you do, because odds are you’ve seen this all play out in a gazillion other movies and that’s The Boy Next Door’s biggest issue,” writes IGN’s Gregg Katzman. “There are just so many tropes in here and you’ll be able to predict just about everything that happens… You’ll see the twists and drama coming a mile away. If a movie is focusing on tension and thrills, it needs some good surprises thrown in there and this movie doesn’t really have any.

“I don’t think anyone is expecting a mind-blowing narrative, but the problem is it doesn’t really do anything to make up for the lack of originality.”

The movie has an appalling 14 per cent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and most synopsis seem to be stepping around an odd conclusion – that megastar Jennifer Lopez is closer to a Lifetime role than she is to A-list gigs, although I’m sure she’ll be compensated like one, no matter the script.

Just Posted

Tommy Chong says cannabis legalization makes him proud to be a Canadian

Legendary marijuana advocate and comedian celebrates cultural milestone at Kelowna event

Award-winning singer/songwriter Christina Martin coming to the Penticton

Christina Martin is bringing her unique musical talents to the Dream Café this Saturday.

Two vehicle collision on the Channel Parkway

Two vehicles were involved in an accident on Friday afternoon in Penticton

Poll: Who do you think will be the next mayor of Penticton?

We are asking Penticton residents to weigh in on who will win the mayor’s seat

Okanagan competitors to be featured in arm wrestling documentary

Arm Nation, featuring competitions from Kelowna and Penticton, will air on Oct. 20 on APTN

Cough cough: Kelowna MLA gets flu shot to prep for the cold season

Steve Thomson got his flu shot from Lakeside Medicine Centre Friday

VOTE: Nature in Focus reader’s choice photo contest

The Penticton Western News Reader’s Choice photo contest

Who’s running in Penticton’s election?

Candidates for the Penticton municipal and school board election

‘Mom, I’m in trouble:’ Canadian faces 10 years for alleged graffiti

Brittney Schneider, another tourist caught spraying message on walls of Tha Pae Gate in Thailand

Feds consulting on national anti-racism strategy behind closed doors

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez says people still face systemic racism in some communities

Black trucks figure prominently in Shuswap thefts

Chase RCMP investigating stolen vehicles from several communities

Enbridge aims for mid-November to finish B.C. pipeline repair after blast

A natural gas pipeline that ruptured and burned near Prince George caused an explosion and fireball

How to get government cheques if Canada Post staff go on strike

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers said members could go on rotating strikes as early as Monday

Anti-SOGI school trustee files defamation lawsuit against BCTF president

Barry Neufeld says Glen Hansman’s words caused him “indignity,” “personal harassment,” and “anxiety”

Most Read