The Hot Sheet
BY Advocate.com Editors
September 24 2010 6:15 AM ET
Howl — The landmark censorship trial surrounding Allen Ginsberg's masterwork is at the center of this compelling triptych from Academy Award-winning documentarians Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman. For their first narrative feature the filmmakers interweave a trippy animated interpretation of the poem and a provocative glimpse into the personal life of the poet (a thoroughly believable James Franco), including hookups with fellow Beat icons Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady, and Ginsberg's longtime partner, Peter Orlovsky.
Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps — From the second Gordon Gekko retrieves his oversize 1988 cell phone while making his way out of prison, you get the sense this might just be Oliver Stone’s best work since the first Wall Street.Michael Douglas is still in fine form as the greedy Gekko, and Shia LaBeouf makes an able foil as Jake Moore, who is engaged to his daughter Winnie (Carey Mulligan). Oscar nominees Josh Brolin and Frank Langella and Oscar-winner Susan Sarandon provide able support.
You Again — Talk about your dream cast. Kristen Bell might be lovely, but forget about her and her high-school foil for a second. The real draw here is to see Sigourney Weaver lock horns with Jamie Lee Curtis ... and, in a surprise scene near the end, Betty White face off with Cloris Leachman. Though this film focuses a lot of its energy on women’s rivalries, it also brings together some of the strongest, most comically adept actresses in Hollywood for the type of showdown you’ll watch over again on DVD. Kristin Chenoweth cameos.
You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger — True to form, Woody Allen assembles some big names for his latest film, which also true to form offers an up-close look at relationships ... the good and the bad. Anthony Hopkins is Alfie, suddenly single after leaving his wife and trying to track down what’s become of his youth. His daughter Sally (Naomi Watts) is smitten with a local art gallery owner (Antonio Banderas) while her husband (Josh Brolin) obsesses over a beautiful mystery woman (Freida Pinto). Shooting in London, Allen continues to reinvent himself as a decidedly American filmmaker heavily influenced by the sights and tastes of Europe.