This week’s releases on home video: Heaven is for Real, Sabotage, The Single Moms Club, Transcendence, and The Zero Theorem
HEAVEN IS FOR REAL
Running Time: 99 mins.
OFRB Rating: PG
Starring: Greg Kinnear, Connor Corum, Kelly Reilly, Thomas Haden Church, and Margo Martindale
Verdict: A sincerely interesting premise — a pastor’s son has a near-death experience and visits Heaven, dividing the town and ostracizing the family — is sullied by lengthy sermons, awkward dialogue, and a pervasive preachiness that smothers its stimulating ideas. (2 stars out of 5)
Running Time: 109 mins.
OFRB Rating: 18A (brutal violence, coarse language, substance abuse)
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Olivia Williams, Sam Worthington, Joe Manganiello, Josh Holloway, Terrence Howard, Mireille Enos, and Harold Perrineau
Verdict: Schwarzenegger’s best movie in twenty years. Director David Ayer’s (End of Watch) graphic tale of a corrupt team of DEA agents being hunted down one by one is gripping, shocking, clever, intense, and only ten minutes too long for its own good. (4½ stars out of 5)
THE SINGLE MOMS CLUB
Running Time: 111 mins.
OFRB Rating: PG (mature themes, language)
Starring: Nia Long, Cocoa Brown, Amy Smart, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Zulay Henao, Tyler Perry, and Terry Crews
Verdict: While not as terrible as Perry’s Madea movies, The Single Moms Club suffers from a banal storyline, unlikeable characters, and predictable turns of plot. Still, better this than Madea’s Cross-Country Road Trip 3. (2½ stars out of 5)
Running Time: 119 mins.
OFRB Rating: PG (mature themes, violence)
Starring: Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Paul Bettany, Morgan Freeman, Cillian Murphy, Kate Mara, Cole Hauser, and Clifton Collins, Jr.
Verdict: A better-than-average sci-fi parable that looks at an artificial intelligence expert who has his consciousness uploaded into a computer, and all that ensues. Taking place over five years and viewing the story from a grand scope, Transcendence has too many good ideas for its own good but still makes for provocative, post-movie conversations. (3½ stars out of 5)
THE ZERO THEOREM
Running Time: 107 mins.
OFRB Rating: Not Rated
Starring: Christoph Waltz, Mélanie Thierry, David Thewlis, Ben Whishaw, Tilda Swinton, Matt Damon, and Lucas Hedges
Verdict: Director Terry Gilliam has made some great head-trips (Brazil, 12 Monkeys, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas), but he’s trying way too hard to be weird here. The plot is a confusing melange of Pi, The Matrix, Blade Runner, and Gilliam’s own Brazil. Instantly forgettable. (2 stars out of 5)