Summertime is perfect for beaches, barbeques and blockbuster movies. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette movie critic and author Barry Paris joins Essential Pittsburgh to give his suggestions and input on this summer's hottest releases.
Current controversy with the “Lone Ranger”
Making the unexpected (but not surprising) decision to play “Tonto” and leave the title character to Armie Hammer, Johnny Depp stirs up controversy with this Disney remake. The new film adds a modern element to the old story by referencing the genocide against the Native Americans.
“White House Down” and apocalypse movies
Exhausting the “apocalypse genre” with recent movies like “Olympus Has Fallen,” and “Independence Day,” Paris found little to recommend about Roland Emmerich’s “White House Down.” In the film, a D.C. cop, played by Channing Tatum, takes his daughter on a White House tour when a group of terrorists suddenly takes everyone in the building hostage. The president, played by Jamie Foxx, must overcome his peaceful tendencies and protect his Capitol. This movie, Paris insists, is also somewhat unrealistic.
Brad Pitt plays a U.N. troubleshooter who, according to Paris, “has some serious trouble to shoot.” Fast and furious zombies attempt to take over cities and nations and Pitt must utilize his talents to protect his family and fellow citizens.
Praise for "Much Ado About Nothing"
By far the favorite film for Paris, he describes director Joss Whedon’s Shakespearean film as a “terrific rendering of Shakespeare, terrifically entertaining piece in itself [and a] superb conceptualization of making Shakespeare available to 21st century people.” While he is hesitant about the use of snorkeling in the piece, he emits his love of the Shakespearean sonnet and recommends this movie to summer cinema enthusiasts.