Trick or treat. Sharks United Television’s October movie offerings are like a giant bag of assorted candy. Some candy is king-sized, and full of chocolaty goodness. But then, when you’re done with all the good stuff, you’re left with “Hot Tamales,” Candy Corn, and other stuff that doesn’t even have a name. It’s just soft and sticky, and wrapped in orange paper, that has “tampered with” written all over it.
When you reach into this SUTV bag o’ treats, the first thing you might pull out is “The Good Heart.” This 2009 drama, which stars Paul Dano and Brian Cox, is definitely the wild card of the bunch. Dano plays Lucas, a young homeless man who is taken in by Jacques (Cox), to help him run his bar, and eventually take over. Although the film looks very promising, and both Dano and Cox are excellent actors, this one may just be too out there for most people to follow. Both Lucas and Jacques are bizarre characters who the audience may have trouble relating to. It’s a toss-up. It could be M&M’s that melt in your mouth and not in your hand, or it could be “Bazooka” gum that you will be chewing for hours, but only enjoy for five minutes.
However, you are guaranteed satisfaction, minus the stomach-ache, if you watch these next films over and over, and over again. They are the crème-de-la-crème, the king-sized chocolate, infused with caramel, that gets you hyper and, therefore, slightly mad with over-indulgence — “Ironman 2,” “Letters to Juliet” and “Shaun of the Dead.”
“Ironman 2” was one of the most successful movies of the year, and for good reason. You can’t go wrong with actors like Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle, Sam Rockwell, and Mickey Rourke — oh, and did I mention the awesome suit that we all wish we could put on, if only for five minutes. “Ironman 2” finds Tony Stark (Downey Jr.) digging deep to overcome the challenges posed by his new foe, Whiplash (Rourke). “Ironman 2” is funny, with great action, a stellar cast, awe-inspiring special effects, and an intriguing story. You will be watching this one multiple times.
From the brilliant mind of director Edgar Wright, we have “Shaun of the Dead”, one of the most memorable films in the zombie genre, of the last 20 years. When the world is plagued with zombies, Shaun (Simon Pegg), a slacker, must try to get his life in order, while at the same time fighting back these undead villains that have pursued him into his local pub, the Winchester. This film is hilarious and will make for an all-around good time.
Lastly, to finish off the best offerings this figurative bag of treats has to offer, there is “Letters to Juliet”. This is undoubtedly a movie for a date night. What else says romance like a movie set in Italy? Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) is an American on vacation in Italy who finds an unanswered letter to Juliet. She takes it upon herself to answer this letter, and then she is taken on a self-discovering journey of love, romance, and fate, as she sets off to reunite the long-lost lovers addressed in the letter. This one is sure to please the hopeless romantics on campus.
Unfortunately, after sifting and picking out the best “candy” in the bunch, all that remains is “Bit-O-Honey,” black licorice, circus peanut — and a toothbrush? “Killers,” “MacGruber,” “Sweeney Todd,” and “Twilight,” are, to put it gently, not the candy you’re excited to unwrap. You will probably watch them because you’re either bored, not sleepy, or there’s just nothing else on, and you may have a laugh or two. Or maybe you will like some aspects, but overall, you will be disappointed. If these were candy, they would give you a stomach-ache and have you thinking that the toothbrush is actually not so bad after all.
So, enjoy the treats, stay away from the tricks, and when all else fails, there’s always reruns of “Jersey Shore.”