Movies This Week: April 13-19, 2012

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Blazing Saddles

This week Austin moviegoers can choose from an unusually large number of new releases and special screenings offering everything from horror to slapstick. (Here's an intriguing mashup idea: The Cabin in the Woods and The Three Stooges.)

If the nine new releases simply won't do -- and if so, perhaps you're being a bit too picky -- the Austin Film Society is screening The Trap on Tuesday at the Alamo Lamar. This Serbian drama is the story of a father caught in a moral quandary: To afford life-saving heart surgery for his son, he must commit a terrible crime. The screening is part of the AFS Essential Cinema "Seefest Austin: Films of Southeast Europe" series.

My special screening pick of the week will surprise no one: the Blazing Saddles (pictured above -- and I swear this is the only available photo) Quote-Along on Thursday evening in Republic Park. What's better than Blazing Saddles? Blazing Saddles with beer ... and pie! This Alamo Drafthouse Off-Centered Film Fest event features a wide array of Central Texas craft beers, and the brewers will be on hand to tell you about their tasty beverages. The pies, alas, are not for eating -- but you can throw them at the brewers to raise funds for the Texas Craft Brewers Guild. I cannot imagine a more refined cinematic event. And remember: It's Hedley Lamarr.

Movies We've Seen

Blue Like Jazz -- In this fish-out-of water comedy, a Southern Baptist college student from Texas expands his horizons at a liberal campus in Oregon. J.C. reviewed the film at this year's SXSW festival, saying Blue Like Jazz is "filled with incredibly funny and really heartfelt moments that make it the kind of film anyone can really enjoy." (Gateway, Tinseltown North)

Bully -- I'm less impressed than many critics with this much-hyped documentary about bullying. As I said in my review, "Bully is very effective at generating great sympathy for its subjects; we certainly feel the kids' pain and share the grief of parents whose children were driven to suicide. What the film lacks, however, is any real journalistic depth." (Alamo Lamar, Arbor, Barton Creek)

The Cabin in the Woods -- Despite this horror film's seemingly tired concept (five friends get more than they bargained for while staying at the titular cabin), critics are raving about it. Based on his review, Rod is raving also: "This horror movie has the power to change your worldview of what a horror movie is and should be -- The Cabin in the Woods is a genre game-changer." (wide)

Footnote -- This Israeli import follows a father and son who are rival professors in Talmudic Studies. Debbie is impressed, saying in her review that she "found this film to be rather engaging -- I thoroughly embraced the humor and never felt isolated from the story or its characters." (Arbor, Violet Crown)

Lockout -- Rod liked Guy Pearce's performance in this sci-fi thriller, but not much else. From his review: "It's perfectly fine to require some amount or belief suspension, but there is a level where it becomes abusive. Lockout requires the viewer to abandon all logic, reason and gray matter at the door." (wide)

The Three Stooges -- Reviewers have been rather unkind to this re-creation of the comedy trio's classic routines; fans of the original Stooges may be even more unkind. J.C. said it's "slightly better than expected, but not by much." Look for his review this weekend. (wide)

Touchback -- Sports drama meets science fiction in this story of a former high school football star who's given the chance to go back in time, replay the big game and change his life. Look for J.C.'s review this weekend. (Barton Creek)

Other Movies Opening in Austin

The Kid With a Bike -- This acclaimed Belgian drama explores the relationship between an abandoned young boy and a hairdresser who fosters him on weekends. (Arbor, Violet Crown)

October Baby -- This faith-based anti-abortion drama is the story of a college student who learns she survived an attempt to abort her. (Cinemark Hill Country Galleria, Cinemark Round Rock, ShowBiz Cinemas Marble Falls, Tinseltown South)

Was going to pass on this

I was surprised I was going to pass. This is my culture so that wasn't an issue for me. But based on your review and seeing the trailer at VC. I'm sold. Looks terrific.

The above comment was in

The above comment was in response to the review for FOOTNOTE.