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New in Theaters Sept. 27: Rush, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, Baggage Claim, Don Jon

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By Chris Kavan - 09/26/13 at 09:12 AM CT

It's going to be a busy weekend as, after a few weeks of seeing on a couple new wide release films, this time we get four. Luckily, all four are going after a very different audience but I still think there are only going to be a couple real winners this weekend, which means some films are going to be left behind. At least one film has my interest for sure and will be the first film in awhile that I will most likely check out in the theater.

RUSH This is the film that will ultimately take me back to the theaters. Fellow FilmCrave operator Nick has been eagerly anticipating this one - and I have to admit, it looks good. Now, director Ron Howard is not exactly known for being a gritty, hard-hitting kind of guy (Apollo 18, A Beautiful Mind and The Da Vinci Code being a few examples of playing things safe) but I hope that Rush actually takes some chances and gets a little down and dirty. Formula One has gotten a new lease on life thanks to the excellent reception of the Senna documentary - and Howard looks like he can handle things. Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brühl play the rival drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda while Olivia Wilde is on hand as the love interest. From what I've seen - it looks like he captures the spirit of the 70s pretty spot on and if this doesn't take first place I will be surprised.

DON JON It's hard to say where Don Jon will end up in terms of box office numbers, but in terms of movies I'm interested in actually watching, it rises above the competition. For one, I think Joseph Gordon-Levitt has a good head on his shoulders and if he can direct half as well as he can act - he may just have a much longer career ahead of him. Plus, he's managed to cast Scarlett Johansson opposite of himself and even with the kind of crazy Jersey accent going on - when she shows up, it makes things so much better. Supporting cast looks great with Julianne Moore, Tony Danza! and Brie Larson amongst others. Levitt himself plays a man obsessed - the trailer shows what he cares about - routine and porn - and Johansson plays a character obsessed with romance movies. Both people are flawed but if they can overcome their own skewed view of reality, maybe they can find happiness. Despite the fact there is a romantic undertone, I'm willing to skip my usual reluctance because of the people involved and the fact I think it looks good.

CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2 The original Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was a minor hit in the states - but did much better when foreign grosses were added in. It's no wonder that given the world-wide appeal, the studio decided to make a sequel. The first movie was already a stretch given the light source material, this sequel just goes completely off the rails. An island inhabited by mutant food out of control (some of which can speak) - but at least they managed to get the original talent back (along with some new faces). A lot of SNL alums here - Andy Samberg, Bill Hader, Will Forte along with Anna Faris, James Caan, Benjamin Bratt, Neil Patrick Harris and Terry Crews. Quite the eclectic group they have going. The real test will be to see what families do now that school is in full swing. It has been awhile since a decent family film has come along, so it could do good business. But domestic returns are really secondary to the overall global response this time around.

BAGGAGE CLAIM Whereas Don Jon looks like it puts a good twist on the classic romantic comedy, Baggage Claim is a straight-up rom-com aimed at the urban Tyler Perry market. With Paula Patton, Taye Diggs, Djimon Hounsou, Derek Luke, Trey Songz, Jill Scott and random white dude Adam Brody on board - the talent is there. But will director David E. Talbert - who is known mostly for straight-to-video efforts - be able to match the success Perry has honed? I honestly don't know - I still can't fathom why Perry is so popular so Talbert could easily have a decent start or he could just as easily be ignored. This is one film that could surprise, but could also easily have one of the lowest openings of the year.

We're looking at a busy weekend - Rush has the edge, I think, but if families show up Cloudy 2 could surprise and if couples leave the house both Don Jon and Baggage Claim have a legitimate shot of doing decent business as well. I'll see you Sunday with the final tally.


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