Trailer Park: “All About Steve,” “Extract,” “Amreeka”
It’s Labor Day weekend! Hallelujah! Time to wear all your white clothing simultaneously, light up the barbecue, and enjoy the fruits of your labor. And because it’s a three-day weekend, you have a whole extra day to go to the movies! It may be a good opportunity to acknowledge “Amreeka” or “Extract” some fun out of your life. But it’s not necessarily “All About Steve,” cause, as far as I’m concerned, that guy’s lame. OK, I’ll stop.
The Movie: “All About Steve”
The Trailer: Sandra Bullock stars as the tragically single nerd with wacky fashion sense who falls in love with a news cameraman on a blind date (Bradley Cooper). Bullock proceeds to stalk Cooper and his anchorman (Thomas Haden Church) on their traveling assignments. Though, after his initial terror at her cringe-worthy antics, Cooper warms up to her happy-go-lucky “chattering” ways.
The Hitch: Sandra Bullock also produced the film and spent years creating the “sexually frustrated goofball usually written only for men.” What came out of this effort appears to be a nothing-ever-goes-right, Ben Stiller-esque comedy, trying to prove that free-spirited women deserve a chance.
The Movie: “Extract”
The Trailer: Joel Reynolds (Jason Bateman) is the owner of a food extract company who has to deal with a sex-depriving wife (Kristen Wiig), an employee who lost a nut on the job (Clifton Collins Jr.) and his sleaze lawyer (Gene Simmons). Things get interesting when he hires a sexy con-woman (Mila Kunis) to work in the factory and his best friend (Ben Affleck) plies him with drugs, trying to get him to relax.
The Hitch: Writer and director Mike Judge created cult classics “Beavis and Butt-Head” and “Office Space,” so theoretically “Extract” is to factories what “Office Space” was to cubicle slaves. I’ve had a weirdo crush on Clifton Collins Jr. ever since he played the one-armed salesman in “Sunshine Cleaning,” so hopefully he will be equally attractive as a one-testicled factory worker. Regardless, “Extract” looks hilarious and combines so many awesome actors, I can’t imagine it will be anything less than amazing. Or, at the very least, way better than “All About Steve.”
The Movie: “Amreeka”
The Trailer: Single Palestinian mother Muna (Nisreen Faour) moves to Illinois with her son, seeking freedom from the West Bank. Meanwhile in Amreeka (which is Arabic for America), racism is bubbling as Americans have just invaded Iraq and everyone from the Middle East is considered a terrorist. Muna eventually gets a job at White Castle while her son endures the already soul-crushing high school halls.
The Hitch: I can’t wait to watch this movie, the perpetually optimistic Muna positively glows on camera. Though the Cannes winner, which was also a Sundance-nominated film, deals with heavy subjects, it seemingly manages to remain sweet, charming, and humorous. “Amreeka” has received the most positive reviews and will certainly hold its own against the big-budget movies.