an alcoholic wrestler, a demonic twin, and some laotian immigrants walk into a wedding party of feuding brides: denver premieres for 1/08

I'd like to think that Gary Oldman got to take that scarf home after doing this movie.

Oh, Denver Premiere Friday! Pike and Dex love you so!

The Wrestler - Darren Aronofsky, licking his wounds after the critical and commercial failure of his new agey magnum opus The Fountain, returns with a scaled-down character study in The Wrestler. Mickey Rourke (in a role that will either re-focus his acting career or put a cap on it) stars as Randy 'The Ram' Robinson, an over-the-hill professional wrestler whose time in the lime-light has long since slipped away. With his star faded, Randy begins to reassess his life and finds that his denial of the reality outside of the ring has left his world in shambles. If only someone would come along and give him another chance in the ring. By gosh! He'd show 'em- he'd show 'em all that 'The Ram' still has some fight left in him! If you can't see where this movie is going from here, then what can I tell ya. As Michael Lerner's movie mogul character says in Barton Fink, "It's a rastlin' picture! What do you need, a road map?" To be fair though, how many ways can you tell a story about the human need for redemption? I mean, even Jesus needed a big comeback to make his story worth telling.(Pike)

The Unborn - It's good to see that in one form or another, the same brand of salesmanship for C-grade genre offerings will always be with us: scantily clad hottie on the artwork (or, as BucsFan 3812 wrote on imdb.com, "HOLY $H!T NICE A$$ ON POSTER!!!!!" )? Check! Slumming name actors (Gary Oldman, James Remar, Carla Gugino)? Check! Creepy demon little boy? Check! Clips from the big exor-scene at the end in all the teevee trailers? Check! And hey, one of the The Dark Knight guys - maybe you've heard of that flick, yeah? - one of those guys wrote and directed it! Yeah...so...hey, did you see the nice a$$ on the poster? (Dex)

The Betrayal -This documentary opens at the Starz FilmCenter on Friday. Their synopsis reads:

Filmed over the course of 23 years, The Betrayal (Nerakhoon) is the story of a family's epic journey from war-torn Laos to the mean streets of New York. Thavisouk Phrasavath tells his own story of the struggling as a young man to survive both the war and the hardships of immigrant life, as well as his mother's astonishing tale of perseverance. Renowned cinematographer Ellen Kuras' directorial debut is a remarkable collaboration with co-director Phrasavath-a poetic deeply personal film about the hidden, human face of war's "collateral damage."

Bride Wars - Instead of a proper preview, I will only offer you this thought-provoking koan from the Zen Buddhist text, The Gateless Gate:

"No matter the cheap and threadbare nature of its being nor its contempt for human joy, this movie will make more over the coming week than you and your friends will earn in all of your combined lifetimes."

Now go and contemplate the sound of one hand clapping, young grasshopper.(Pike)

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