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Review: So B. It

Adapted from Sarah Weeks’s YA novel, So B. It is the story of a 12-year-old girl named Heidi (Talitha Eliana Bateman) who lives in Reno with her severely autistic mother (Jacinda Barrett) and a mother-figure neighbor Bernadette (Alfre Woodard) who suffers from agoraphobia. She knows very little about her past or her family since her mother cannot tell her and there’s no one else to ask. But when she stumbles upon an undeveloped roll of film and prints it, she finds the key to her mom’s history. It points her to Liberty, New York, and so she takes off on a cross-country journey to discover who she really is. It’s a heartwarming coming-of-age story, though more ABC After School Special than must-see in a theater.

Is That a Gun in Your Pocket?

Based on the Aristophanes comedy set in Athens circa 411 BC, and translated to small town Texas in the 21st century, Is That a Gun in Your Pocket? is essentially Lysistrata Lite. The women in the original withheld sex from their husbands to stop the Peloponnesian War. Here they do the same to rid their town of guns after a boy takes Dad’s cool pistol to school and accidentally shoots the crossing guard in the derriere. The film feels a lot like a TV movie, except for foul-mouth Granny (Cloris Leachman), and the cast is mostly television actors. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but sadly as comedies go the film never rises above the sitcom level.

The Wedding Ringer

My biggest hang-up with this Bridesmaids-meets-Hangover-esque comedy is that it’s hard not to listen to its star, Josh Gad, and not picture the animated snowman Olaf from Frozen. The ‘characters’ may be different – but their voices are exactly the same. So it takes some getting used to! Do you wanna build a snowman…?

Is that all that’s wrong with The Wedding Ringer? No. But there’s plenty that’s right… including a story that is sweet and relatable at its core, and a cast of characters that generate plenty of laugh-out-loud moments. It’s basically a ‘buddy movie chick flick’ that offers up an entertaining escape from the somber awards-season fare.

The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure

I love a good kids’ movie. I will even go see one alone if I can’t find a little buddy to take me along. But The Oogieloves in the Big Balloon Adventure is not one of those kiddie flicks that adults will want to see on their own. I’m not even sure you’d want to see it with your kids. It’s clearly meant for the two to six year-old crowd, but even a discerning six year-old might want to run for the exit. It’s a weird musical adventure featuring three brightly colored, big-hipped teletubbie wannabes and their friends a talking window, vacuum, fish and pillow. Throw in brief appearances from an odd smattering of Hollywood stars — Cloris Leachman, Christopher Lloyd, Chazz Palminteri, Cary Elwes, Jaime Pressley and Toni Braxton — and it all adds up to a strange attempt to create a new thing for kids to obsess over.  It doesn’t work.