Everyone waits until the year is over to compile their “Best of whatever” movie lists. This has become a mundane practice. Time for a bit of a change, kids.

One would think that a movie that is the equivalent of cinematic ambien for yours truly, would automatically land at the very bottom of this list. Actually, by falling asleep, that response more than likely saved The Pirates! Band of Misfits from earning that dishonorable recognition in some sort of strange way. So in conclusion, the weekend before the 2012 summer movies season ended up being comparable to bland warm-up act for a headlining performer.

The new releases for the respective week will have a capsule review at the end of the column. An updated list comes out every Monday. Here’s how things are shaking up so far in 2012:

1. Chronicle
2. The Cabin in the Woods
3. Red Tails
4. The Grey
5. Game Change
6. The Secret World of Arrietty
7. Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax
8. Friends with Kids
9. The Raid: Redemption
10. Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds
11. Big Miracle
12. Think Like a Man
13. 21 Jump Street
14. Brake
15. Mirror Mirror
16. This Means War
17. The Three Stooges
18. Gone
19. Blue Like Jazz
20. American Reunion
21. Jeff, Who Lives at Home
22. Journey 2: The Mysterious Island
23. Brooklyn Brothers Beat the Best
24. Safe
25. Searching for Sonny
26. The Hunger Games
27. John Carter
28. Wrath of the Titans
29. Dead Dad
30. Underworld: Awakening
31. The Devil Inside
32. The Five-Year Engagement
33. Downtown Express
34. Project X
35. The Raven
36. Silent House
37. Bully
38. Peace, Love, & Misunderstanding
39. Lockout
40. The Woman in Black
41. The Vow
42. Man on a Ledge
43. The Lucky One
44. Contraband
45. Act of Valor
46. 4:44 Last Day on Earth
47. Safe House
48. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance
49. The Pirates! Band of Misfits
50. Kill List
51. Haywire
52. A Thousand Words
53. Joyful Noise
54. Wanderlust

Not Screened: One for the Money, Casa De Mi Padre, Chimpanzee

The Raven

When factoring in the tone and atmosphere of this 111 minute tale, comparisons to 2001’s From Hell come to mind. Gloomy colors and callous set pieces, coupled with the 19th century costuming and demeanors, create an environment that is kind of cool to dive into. In the end though, the storytelling pattern is virtually the same, and at times subpar, as any other flick that dances with concept of the killer “communicating” with his pursuers.

The Five-Year Engagement

It has a lot wrong with it but it flashes enough potential to get one through this. Will it ever be a Stoller and Segel comedy you would want to watch again? Not a chance. It’s essentially just like going on a boring first date, but you stick with it because you never know whether the night will end with a bang or a not (the Italian in me) thanks to a few timely connective sparks.

The Pirates! Band of Misfits

Look, when one can comfortably dose off into a light sleeping state, in a packed theater mind you, one must assume this just isn’t working. There were no group laughs to jar yours truly awake (but hitting my head on an arm rest while wearing 3D glasses did the trick though) and the physical aspects could only do so much to maintain interest levels. Granted, the final sequence shows the talent on the mechanical side of things and the script does a decent job (finally) in bringing everything to a close; but the lack of charisma in this brief journey earns this the label of: The Most Uninteresting 3D Animated Movie in the World. Well, at least for 2012.


Toward the end of last year, this guy anointed action-star Jason Statham with his own brand of movies; similar to Jackie Chan and/or Adam Sandler. Safe, is yet another patented “Jason Statham flick.” Read Review

Releasing this Friday: The Avengers, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel




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By Joe Belcastro

Joe Belcastro is an established movie critic in Tampa, Florida. As a member of the Florida Film Critics Circle, most of his time is spent reviewing upcoming movies. He also covers news pertaining to the film industry, on both a local and national level as well as conducting interviews. To contact Joe Belcastro regarding a story or with general questions about his services, please e-mail him and/or follow him on Twiiter @TheWritingDemon.

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