Last week, Jurassic World‘s box office dominance was finally ended – just barely – by Pixar’s Inside Out. Oh, and there were two new releases I guess. Terminator: Genisys was met with resounding boos from audiences and critics alike, each blasting it for it’s needlessly convoluted plot. Magic Mike XXL found it’s small audience enough to probably be considered a success, but it certainly hasn’t made the same splash as the original. This week, the weekend champion is going to be clear – those annoying little goggle-wearing Twinkies from Despicable Me.
Minions – (PG) 91 min. – Oooba dooba meee booooo. If you can read that first sentence over and over for 91 straight minutes, then you are exactly audience for Minions. Which means you are a child. The Minions of the highly overrated movie Despicable Me are probably one of the most irritating creations in recent fiction. They have been meticulously manufactured to appeal to kids, and in the process their Minion-babblespeak has permeated our culture. To keep the money train flowing, the powers-that-be have given the Minions their own film in which they are recruited by new evil masterminds trying to take over the world. Early word is that there are actually a few genuine laughs to be had from Minions, but not enough to sustain a feature-length film. That won’t matter though, as this movie will probably earn above $100 million this weekend.
Self/Less – (PG-13) 116 min. – One of the movies that will flounder in the face of Minions this weekend is Self/Less, a science-fiction thriller that looks utterly bland. I’m having a hard time mustering the enthusiasm to even write this short blurb about it. In Self/Less, a dying man (Ben Kingsley) uses his considerable riches to transfer his consciousness to the body of a young, handsome man (Ryan Reynolds). This allows him to re-live his youth carefree, until memories and figures of his host body’s former life start appearing. This probably makes him feel bad about stealing the young man’s life away, and there’s probably a heavy-handed moral thrown in about appreciating your one and only life. Early reviews are unimpressive, but I didn’t need them to tell me this looked like a snoozer. The advertisements are completely sterile and have no draw. I don’t expect much of an impact from this movie.
The Gallows – (R) 81 min. – You know a horror movie is good when the advertisements forego showing you any actual footage from the film, and instead opt to show you testimonials of preview audiences that swear it’s a good movie. They promise. No way, The Gallows. You’re not fooling me. This looks like a typical teen slasher flick, except instead of slashing there’s going to be…hanging? You can’t contain this originality! It looks like the directors had such little material they couldn’t even stretch it to a normal 90-minute runtime. Skip this one.
The Bottom Line – If you have children, absolutely bring them to see Minions because they’ve probably been squawking in your ear about it for the past month and it’ll make them happy. Of course, do this knowing that afterward, you will have to buy every single piece of Minions merchandise that exists. The merchandise is everywhere and once your kids see a Minion plush doll, they’re going to throw a temper tantrum if they don’t get it. So this movie will cost you more than just a price of admission. As for Self/Less and The Gallows, I’d actually say go with the latter. The Gallows is probably going to suck, but at least it’s only 81 minutes so it won’t eat up two hours of your day like Self/Less.