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New in Theaters March 04: Zootopia, London Has Fallen, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot

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By Chris Kavan - 03/03/16 at 06:45 AM CT

Let it be known that the first weekend in March will be the weekend that Deadpool finally dethroned. A betting man would put his money on the new animated feature from Disney - with an action-packed sequel and a war time comedy coming in a distant second and third. It's not even going to be close - Deadpool has had a great (and unexpectedly-strong) run, but the Merc with a Mouth is no match for families desperate for content. I still think it's going to put up a valiant effort, but we'll see just how much that matters in the face of some real competition.

ZOOTOPIA For a time, Pixar was the king of animation with everyone else trying to play catch up. In the last few years, however, Disney has definitely been back on their game and seeks to regain their throne as king in animation. Which brings us to Zootopia. The film follows a city bustling as cities are oft to do - but this one is filled with anthropomorphic animals - including a rookie rabbit cop (Ginnifer Goodwin) on the trail of a wily con-artist fox (Jason Bateman). I have seen the hilarious Zootopia posters (that spoof modern movies - everything from 50 Shades of Grey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens - another Disney property, natch) and the trailers make this look like winner for children and adults alike. I think this is going to have a pretty monster opening - it helps that there hasn't been a decent animated feature since Kung Fu Panda 3 opened way back in January. Plus, the supporting cast is impressive - Idris Elba, J.K. Simmons, Octavia Spencer, Bonnie Hunt, Tommy Chong, Shakira, Nate Torrence, Alan Tudyk, Jenny Slate, Kristen Bell and Tommy 'Tiny' Lister are all on the cast list. That is one fine lineup if I have ever seen one and points to quality as well as quantity. I have no doubt this is going to be a huge hit - but we'll just see how good it gets.

LONDON HAS FALLEN I'll be the first to admit that Olympus Has Fallen was a lot of fun. For my money, I still thought that White House Down was more fun, but Olympus was the more gritty of the two. There was some danger to the violence and it packed more of a punch. Now the sequel goes international as Gerard Butler and Aaron Eckhart take the action to England where the world leaders are gathered for the funeral of the prime minister when, of course, everything goes to pot. Soon enough, major landmarks are being blown up (along with cars and such), people are involved in high speed chases and gunfights. Some other familiar faces are along for this new, high-octane ride: Morgan Freeman, Radha Mitchell, Angela Bassett, Sean O'Bryan, Melissa Leo and Robert Forster all are back to reprise their roles (we'll see if all of them make it or not this time). The film looks like it earns its R rating - this is the kind of film you watch for the violence and mayhem. I doubt it will do as well as the original, but it should do well enough.

WHISKEY TANGO FOXTROT That leaves us with Tina Fey playing (real-life) journalist Kim Baker as she is sent to Afghanistan and Pakistan for war coverage. Seeing as how both Americans and women aren't exactly welcomed with open arms, it presents its own set of challenges as well as navigating a dangerous war-torn area of the world. The last time we had a movie mixing comedy with drama and featured a woman going to another part of the world that was also rated R we wound up with Our Brand is Crisis - and we all know how that turned out (poorly). I hope Fey has more luck with this one - she has Martin Freeman, Billy Bob Thornton, Nicholas Braun, Alfred Molina and Margot Robbie backing her up. I don't think it will be overtly successful, but I'm hoping it will be at least somewhat attractive to audiences.

It's going to be an interesting weekend - Zootopia should have the run of things but it will be more interesting to see how London Has Fallen and Whisky Tango Foxtrot does against Deadpool. I'll see you Sunday with the results.


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