By Chris Kavan - 10/21/11 at 10:56 AM CT
Do you think what's old is new again? Hopefully so, because the top draws this weekend all have one thing in common - they've all been here before.
1) Hoping that the third time is just as charming, Paranormal Activity 3 goes back in time to show us how the heroines/victims in the first two films first came in contact with the demon who would go on to ruin their adult lives. I hope this series isn't going the same was as Saw or Final Destination (you know, release one each year to diminishing returns). The second entry was a bit of a letdown, but I'm at least willing to give this one more shot, if only because there is a lack of decent horror to be found recently.
2) There have been so many adaptations of The Three Musketeers, you wonder how they will freshen up the story. Well, 3D always makes things better, right? Also, let's throw in a female villain this time. Interest may be high but reviews are definitely on the lower end. It looks like it has plenty of action, but I have a feeling the story is going to be a mess. Probable rental, nothing more.
3) Mr. Bean, I'm sorry, I mean Rowan Atkinson, is back in a sequel I don't know if anybody saw coming (or cared enough about anyway). Johnny English Reborn brings the bumbling spy back into the fold. If you prefer your humor British, and have seen and/or appreciate Atkinson's brand of comedy, this will obviously appeal to you. However, for audiences in general I find it hard to believe this will have much impact.
4) On the more thrilling side of things, Margin Call brings a sense of danger to the current financial meltdown by setting a series of events that unfold at an investment bank just before the crisis hits. I know, sounds riveting, but it looks like the above-average cast (Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons, Paul Bettany, Stanley Tucci, Zachary Quinto, Demi Moore - just to name a few) and reverent story line just might raise the bar.
5) Finally, opening in limited release is the much-talked about Martha Marcy May Marlene, which makes great use of paranoia when a woman escapes a cult and joins her family, but has some trouble adjusting. Sound dark and dangerous - just the type of film I would appreciate, but I doubt it will show anywhere near me, so I'll have to wait it out.
I have a feeling that with Halloween coming up, Paranormal Activity 3 will be able to scare off all competition, but we'll see come Sunday if audiences are in the mood for horror as much as I am.