Friday, September 3, 2010

Movie Capsules by Barry Epstein– Sept. 3, 2010 Playing at the Cinemark, Muvico, Regal & Sunrise Cinemas

Lebanon *** 1/2
Art/Foreign and Drama. In English, Hebrew, Arabic and French languages with subtitles. The First Lebanon War - June, 1982. A lone tank is dispatched to search a hostile town that has already been bombarded by the Israeli Air Force. What seems to be a simple mission gradually spins out of control. Shmuel the gunner, Assi the commander, Herzl the loader and Yigal the driver are the tank's crew, four 20-something boys who have never fought in a war and are now operating a killing machine. Though trying to remain brave, the boys are pushed to their mental limits as they struggle to survive in a situation they cannot contain, and try not to lose their humanity in the chaos of war. R 94 minutes. Three and a half stars

Going the Distance **1/2
Drama, Romance and Comedy. Erin's wry wit and unfiltered frankness charm newly single Garrett (Justin Long) over beer, bar trivia and breakfast the next morning. Their chemistry sparks a full-fledged summer fling, but neither expects it to last once Erin (Drew Barrymore) heads home to San Francisco and Garrett stays behind for his job in New York City. Yet, neither is sure they want it to end. Meanwhile, Garrett's friends don't like losing their best drinking buddy to yet another rocky romance, and Erin's high-strung, overprotective married sister, Corrine, wants to keep Erin from heading down an all-too-familiar road. But, despite the opposite coasts, the nay-saying friends and family, and a few unexpected temptations, the couple just might actually go the distance. R 103 minutes. Two and a half star chick flick

Machete **
Action/Adventure. Robert Rodriguez directs. A blade-wielding ex-federale hides out as a day laborer when he is double-crossed by a corrupt senator. Starring: Danny Trejo, Cheech Marin, Don Johnson, Jessica Alba, Robert De Niro, Michelle Rodriguez, Steven Seagal and Lindsay Lohan. R 105 minutes. Bloody two stars

The American Zero stars
Suspense/Thriller. Alone among assassins, Jack (George Clooney) is a master craftsman. When a job in Sweden ends more harshly than expected for this American abroad, he vows to his contact Larry that his next assignment will be his last. Jack reports to the Italian countryside, where he holes up in a small town and relishes being away from death for a spell. Surprising himself, Jack seeks out the friendship of local priest Father Benedetto and pursues romance with local woman Clara. But by stepping out of the shadows, Jack may be tempting fate. R 105 minutes. (Sept. 1) Long, slow, boring waste of celluloid. Like watching paint dry. One of Clooney’s worst. Zero stars

Barry Epstein is president of Barry R. Epstein Associates, a full service public relations, marketing and political consulting firm based in Boca Raton, Fl. For more information, visit or call 561.852.0000. Watch “barry Epstein live” every Friday morning at 10 AM on or anytime by clicking ondemand barryepstein

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