Every week, the Cheat Sheet Entertainment staff selects the top three movies to catch in theaters. Here are our top picks for this week.
Much has been said concerning the release of Ant-Man this week. As one of Marvel’s smaller heroes (both literally and figuratively), he doesn’t quite possess the star power of marquee names like Captain America or Iron Man. Even so, that’s never stopped Marvel Studios before, given the success of movies like Guardians of the Galaxy. If there’s one thing they do well over there, it’s spin straw into gold on a consistent basis. The real concern for Ant-Man isn’t so much whether or not they can make the titular hero exciting, so much as make him seem important.
Many reviewers out there haven’t been able to shake the feeling that Ant-Man was made more as an obligatory bridge to bigger and better Marvel movies, and they’re not entirely wrong. Still though, it’s managed to garner mostly positive feedback, checking in at a surprisingly decent 79% on Rotten Tomatoes. AV Club‘s solid “B” rating was punctuated by their generous opinion that it “makes for an enjoyable, intermittently inspired effects-driven comedy and a welcome antidote to the over-burdened world-saving that seems to define big-screen superhero stories.”
The basic consensus seems to be that you won’t have a bad time seeing Ant-Man, as long as you’re not expecting every single one of the Avengers to show up and save everyone from a universe-destroying catastrophe. This one looks to be closer to the first Captain America than The Winter Soldier, so just keep that in mind when you find your seat in the theater.
It was only a matter of time until Judd Apatow conscripted Amy Schumer into his comedy illuminati, and that moment finally has arrived with Trainwreck. On the surface, it looks like your typical rom-com: A self-assured lothario (or in this case a lothariette?) who doesn’t believe in commitment is gradually shown the light by a witty, free-spirited idealist. The key difference it would seem is that the gender roles have been swapped, putting the woman in the dominant role and the man in the more emotionally sensitive place.
Apatow has been surprisingly dormant as a director lately, making this his return to prominence. When last we saw him, he was heading up the tepid yet frighteningly apt This is 40, and before that the morbid Adam Sandler-led Funny People. With Trainwreck‘s 88% Rotten Tomatoes score, it would appear as though Judd Apatow has officially returned to form, thanks in large part to some solid writing and stellar performances from Schumer and Bill Hader.
3. The Stanford Prison Experiment
The Stanford Prison Experiment is known in most circles as the living, breathing proof of mankind’s inherent nature to torture their fellow humans. It stands to reason that this largely disturbing lab trial would make for great cinema. The story: A group of college kids volunteered to pose as either guards or prisoners in a fake jail environment. During the experiment, things went pear-shaped fast, as the “guards” let their position of power quickly get to their collective heads. They both physically and verbally abused the “prisoners” into complete and utter submission, before things were finally ended after just six days.
There’s not much you can do to dramatize what was a horrifically dramatic experiment, making it so this script was practically written for the screenwriters already. What went down in the cut-short experiment was truly the stuff of nightmares, with one “prisoner” even suffering a psychotic break. In all, it should make for an entertaining (if not disturbing) look at one of the most infamous lab trials in history (helped of course by its 85% Rotten Tomatoes score too).
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