The Wild Wild Now Playing

By: Jeff Ford
By: Jeff Ford

Previews of Men in Black III and Chernobyl Diaries

The Avengers have swatted all competition at the box office, but I have doubts that this streak will last through the weekend.  Of the three films being unleashed into the marketplace this week (two new and The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel I already previewed back in The Incredible Now Playing), one has the power to knock Joss Whedon’s great opus  from the top of the mountain.  Whether or not it should be worthy of the title of King of the Box Office is another matter altogether.  It’s time to “Nod Your Head” as we dive back into the world where aliens live among us.


Agent J travels in time to MIB's early years in the 1960s, to stop an alien from assassinating his friend Agent K and changing history. *

Will Smith (Men in Black) steps in front of the camera for the first time since 2007’s Seven Pounds in a return to one of the roles that made him the king of summer.  It’s been 10 years since the last film in the franchise (15 since the only good film) and I don’t think the world has been clamoring for a new iteration.  The concept was worn out about 10 minutes into the second film.  It doesn’t appear that this new version is going to be breaking any new ground as well.  MiB III is taking the Austin Powers approach with a time trip back to the 1960’s but without the satire and the wit of the Mike Myer’s series.  The trailers are not exciting and the slapstick comedy bits are not funny.  Tommy Lee Jones (Men in Black II) comes back in what appears to be an extended cameo, for the most part being replaced by Josh Brolin (Thrashin’) whose last foray into the summer movie season was the abysmal Jonah Hex. 

I’m kind of hoping my cynicism is misplaced for this film.  The first was a funny and smart summer blockbuster.  It’s my negative reaction to the second that is putting me on guard.  Maybe the creative team has reached back into the 90’s and embraced what worked in the first.  It’s just that what I’ve seen so far has left me…less than thrilled.  I’m drawing my Noisy Cricket and blasting 2 little Tiffany cardboard cutouts out of 5.  Men in Black III is rated PG-13 for sci-fi action violence, and brief suggestive content.


Six tourists hire an extreme tour guide who takes them to the abandoned city Pripyat, the former home to the workers of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor.  During their exploration, they soon discover they are not alone. *

It’s a haunted house film except now in a city.  If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen hundreds of others.  Kids get together and do stupid things, which end up killing them in the end.  The End.  2 Nuclear Meltdowns out of 5.  Chernobyl Diaries is rated R for violence, some bloody images and pervasive language.

That will do for this week.  Stay tuned next time as we eat the poisoned apple from a Monster.  Until then, remember that “Parents Just Don’t Understand” that there is a “Nightmare on My Street.”

*All movie summaries taken from

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