Hollywood must really hate it when Halloween falls on a weekend. Because there goes a prime Friday and/or Saturday night, lost to cavorting about in costumes or running your kids from house to house. They don’t totally stay away from it, but they must have some tempered expectations when competing with All Hallows. Which, given what we have opening this weekend, seems like a reasonable course of action.
It’s official: I am tired of zombies. Or at least, new iterations of them. I can watch the first two Romero films, Zak Snyder’s remake of Dawn of the Dead, maybe Zombieland thrown in for good measure, and possibly a marathon of iZombie, and I’m all set, thanks. Not that they’re going to stop trying on my account, but one can hope. Hope is not something I hold out for Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse, which at least has the courtesy to completely spell out its premise in its title to save us all a little time. From the trailers, this seems to be about a bunch of 20-year olds playing high school students who have raunchy adventures with zombies. I do give the film some credit for going for an R rating rather than a box office friendlier PG-13. That’ll allow it a decent level of gore and raunch. But even so, I just can’t muster up much enthusiasm for it, and I doubt many will feel differently.
Bradley Cooper has cooled down a bit after his hot streak of American Hustle, Guardians of the Galaxy and American Sniper. Serena was practically forgotten, opening on all of 59 screens after sitting around for almost two years, and Aloha meant more “good-bye” than “hello” when it came out earlier this year. That was seen as more Cameron Crowe’s burden to bear than Cooper’s though, and here he is now hoping to get things back on track with Burnt. Question is, are people going to show up to see him as a chef struggling to make his dreams come true? Cooking does well as reality TV fare, but it doesn’t strike me as big box office fodder, regardless of how much people like Cooper. He might get this to a decent opening, but after that? Check please.
Which leaves us with Our Brand Is Crisis, whose title alone probably dooms it to failure. Sure, Sandra Bullock being in it will help, but that title doesn’t really say much to Mr. and Mrs. Average Movie Goer. They’ve been running the trailer for this pretty heavily in theaters lately, and its tone is all over the place. Is it an acerbic political black comedy, an uplifting redemption story, or an eye-opening satire about how American politics are seen around the world? It seems to want to be all those things, none of which really seem to play well together. Still, it’s the most interesting release this week as far as I’m concerned, because it at least seems to be about something. But I doubt it’s going to get people to leave the costumes off and buy a ticket.
Likely I’ll be staying in tonight and tomorrow night and having my own Halloween spook-fest. I’ll do my yearly watch of Night of the Living Dead, then check out what Turner Classic Movies has going on with their always-stellar Halloween programming. Living in an apartment, you don’t really get the whole trick-or-treating experience, so it’ll be a nice, quiet evening to turn down the lights and watch some scary stuff. With all apologies to Hollywood, of course.