Sunday, April 24, 2011

Four Movies: Two to Applaud, Two Just for Laughs

I recently saw "Win, Win" with Paul Giamatti (Sideways, Cinderella Man, American Splendor)and Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone, The Office, The Wire), and I want to give it a huge thumbs up. This is a hugely likeable movie with hugely likeable co-stars. Giamatti plays a down-on-his-luck lawyer who spies an opportunity when a client of his needs a guardian. He also coaches the high school wrestling team, which hasn't won in a very long time. He coaches the team with the man (Jeffrey Tambor) who shares his small law office. When the troubled grandson of his client runs away from home and shows up on his doorstep, complications ensue. Though it doesn't hurt that this kid is a star wrestler.

Can I just say that I love Giamatti and Ryan? Paul Giamatti never will be the typical Hollywood leading man, and yet in just about everything he does he infuses the role with so much humanity that he nails it every time. In this role he is lovable schlub who loves his wife and kids and makes a very bad decision. And we know that it could be any one of us coming to the precipice of that decision.

And Ryan, adopting a hint of the Boston accent she used in "Gone Baby Gone," is like your neighbor next door. I know exactly where she shops and how much she has to spend just from looking at her wardrobe. I have to admit I already admired Amy Ryan when I saw her go from her devastating character in "Gone Baby Gone" to her humorous turn on "The Office." But now I love her. Could she please be my girlfriend?

I almost forgot to mention that Bobby Cannavale (do you remember Will's policeman boyfriend on "Will and Grace?") does a hysterical and touching turn as a high school friend of both Giamatti and Tambor. They were all on the wrestling team together back in the day, and Cannavale desperately wants to recapture what might have been.

Here is the trailer:

This next movie is one I mentioned when I blogged about Emma Stone in "Easy A." I said that she was going to play the starring role in the film version of "The Help," the incredibly popular novel by Kathryn Stockett about race relations in 1960's Mississippi. The film comes out in August, and seeing the trailer all I can say is "I can't wait I can't wait I can't wait."

The next two movies I want to see purely for the belly laughs.

Hangover: Part II (Opens May 26)

The Bridesmaids, with Kristin Wiig (opens May 13)

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