We have moved past the summer season, blasted past the Memorial Day barrier and are now in that dead zone the leads back into the holiday season beginning with a batch of horror films for Halloween and then the bigger releases between Thanksgiving and Christmas. This is not to say that the movies released now are duds, no. There is a mix of low expectation releases, movies with nowhere else to get released, and some critical darling types looking to beat the Oscar rush to come. This week features a blend of both types.
Devil. (2010, 80 minutes, PG-13, horror) I am sure most of you have heard the stories of audiences groaning at the appearance of M. Night Shyamalan's name in the trailer. I completely understand where that sentiment is coming from, the man does not foster confidence. I am intrigued by this as he is a good idea man and this is the role he has here. He delivered the idea and a different creative team, in this case John Erick Dowdle (The Poughkeepsie Tapes, Quarantine) directs a script by Brian Nelson (Hard Candy, 30 Days of Night). Not a bad pair if you ask me. In any case, the movie seems to be built on claustrophobia and tension. It is set in an elevator with a number of people trapped inside, only one is not what they seem. It should also be noted that this is the first of Shyamalan's Nightmare Chronicles, a series of films based on his ideas but written and directed by others. This could be helpful in rejuvenating his image, if they prove to be good.
Easy A. (2010, 93 minutes, PG-13, comedy) Emma Stone (Zombieland) stars in this high school comedy about a nobody girl who uses the high school rumor mill to her advantage. Basically, she fakes losing her virginity to help a gay male friend get the bullies off his back by having a fake tryst at a party. Pretty soon she finds herself in the middle of a scandal and helping other guys with their popularity issues. The story clearly references The Scarlet Letter, using it in the trailer and having Emma sew a red A on her clothes. I am not sure if this will be good or not, but I like Stone and it looks like it could be fun.