“Fast & Furious 6″ makes its way into theaters today (May 24).
I’m introducing a new feature here at ForrestHartman.com: Snapshot reviews. Please note that I will still write long-form critiques for my Video Verdict column. These are designed to give readers a quick assessment of new movies. Hopefully you find them useful and fun.
FAST & FURIOUS 6
Story: Dominic Toretto and his crew team with U.S. agent Hobbs in order to capture a dangerous mercenary who is at skilled at motorized hijackings as they used to be. Sweetening the pot is the apparent appearance of Dom’s longtime love, Letty, a woman the whole crew thought was dead.
Starring: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Jordana Brewster, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris and Gina Carano.
Directed by: Justin Lin (“Better Luck Tomorrow,” “Fast Five”)
Bottom line: The plotting is ridiculous and the dialogue is melodramatic, but the stunts are as good as they get.
Story: Animated film about a teen girl who discovers a tiny world of forest creatures engaged in a constant battle between good and evil. When she is magically transported into their world, she goes on a fantastic adventure.
Voice cast features: Colin Farrell, Josh Hutcherson, Beyonce, Chris O’Dowd, Pitbull, Amanda Seyfried, Christoph Waltz and Jason Sudeikis
Directed by: Chris Wedge (“Ice Age,” “Robots”)
Bottom line: Beautiful 3-D animation coupled with a compelling story. The fantastic writing, and Wedge’s excellent execution, make this the best animated movie since “Rise of the Guardians.”
In “Hotel Transylvania,” Dracula isn’t such a bad guy. In fact, he spends much of his time welcoming customers to his upscale guesthouse.
This week’s new home video releases include a supernatural horror film, an animated movie with a supernatural twist and a black comedy that’s just plain super.
In “Total Recall,” Colin Farrell plays Douglas Quaid, a seemingly average guy who finds himself in a secret agent adventure.
This week’s home video releases include a baseball drama starring Clint Eastwood, a musical about college show choirs and a remake of a popular science-fiction film.
John Lithgow, left, embraces Caesar the chimp in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes.” Caesar is computer animated, but Andy Serkis – working with motion capture technology – provided the basis for the performance.
There’s not much originality on the home video front this week, as the most noteworthy releases are a sequel, a remake and a reboot.
Ryan Reynolds plays Hal Jordan, an adventurous test pilot who becomes the heroic title character in “Green Lantern.”
A lot of theatrical releases are making their way to home video this week, and they range from a big-budget superhero flick to a poetic drama from one of the film industry’s maverick directors.
Russell Crowe plays the title character in director Ridley Scott’s “Robin Hood.”
Fairy tales and folklore rule the home video world this week, as new releases include Disney’s latest take on Tinkerbell and Russell Crowe’s stab at the Robin Hood legend.
Writer-director James Cameron’s science-fiction film “Avatar” is the highest-grossing movie of all time, and his blue-skinned Na’vi protagonists are one of the reasons behind its success.
Each of the four major films coming out on home video this week was in competition at the 82nd Academy Awards, and all but one of them – “The Lovely Bones” – left the ceremony with at least one Oscar.