Reel Picks


Easy A (PG-13)

Emma Stone is wonderful as the outcast Olive, a virgin who creates a phony reputation as a sexually promiscuous hottie — inspired by Hawthorne, she embroiders red As on her T-shirts — and becomes super cool. Good characters and cast: Patricia Clarkson, Stanley Tucci, Thomas Haden Church, Lisa Kudrow, Amanda Bynes, Penn Badgley.

3.5 shells

Jackass 3D (R)

The latest in a series designed for those who thrive on being grossed out. It is humor based on regurgitating (literally) all the components of low and no taste.

1.5 shells

Life As We Know It (PG-13)

So predictable. So sit-com. So cute. A couple, Holly (Katharine Heigl — hasn’t she done this before?) and Messer (Jeff Duhamel) who can’t stand each other are made guardians of their friends’ baby Sophie, and wind up having to raise her together. Diaper gags, confused new parent gags, sexual tension disguised as bickering, and way too many montage sequences.

2.5 shells

Red (PG-13)

It’s the AARP version of a slam-bam action flick. Retired CIA agents, framed for an assassination, have to break into a secret CIA headquarters and stop a plot to bring down the government. It’s a blast — with Bruce Willis, Morgan Freeman, John Malkovich, Helen Mirren, Mary-Louise Parker, Richard Dreyfuss.

3 shells

The Town (R)

Ben Affleck (bank robber). Jon Hamm (FBI). Boston (the tightly knit ‘Hood of Charlestown). Romance (Rebecca Hall). Loyalty and betrayal. Powerful.

4.5 shells.

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (PG-13)

Oliver Stone’s tense sequel is set in 2008, after the world economy has tanked. After eight years in prison, Gordon Gekko (Michael Douglas, an Oscar winner for this role in ’87) slowly plots to get back in on the double-dealing action while nice guy trader Jake (Shia LaBeouf), about to marry Gekko’s estranged daughter Winnie (Carey Mulligan), has his own agenda. With Susan Sarandon, Josh Brolin, Eli Wallach, Frank Langella. Here’s to greed and excess.

3 shells

These reviews are based on a consensus of published ratings.