New in Theaters: 'Captain Phillips,' 'Machete Kills'

Captain Phillips

It is a rare thing for a big production to earn a rating over 90% from the often-harsh critics of Rotten Tomatoes; last weekend, Gravity received this singular honor. Today, moviegoers will witness something even rarer—the same phenomenon two weekends in a row.

Coming out today is Captain Phillips, another ocean-intensive Tom Hanks drama. The film, directed by Paul Greengrass, is based on the 2009 raid of the U.S. freighter Maersk Alabama by Somali pirates, and all the resultant drama and violence that attends real-world pirates.

The film hit a very impressive 95% on the Tomatometer. Critics across the board are hailing the film, which is equal parts drama and commentary on globalization, as incredibly powerful and memorable, due in most part to phenomenal acting from Mr. Tom Hanks. However, the Box Office Guru predicts only $18 million for the film’s opening weekend gross, most likely because of the continuing success of Gravity.

Also opening today is Machete Kills, sequel to the 2010 tongue-in-cheek action film starring Danny Trejo as the title character. In this installment, which also features Sofia Vergara, Michelle Rodriguez, and Lady Gaga (make of that what you will), Machete returns at the request of the president of the US to take down a zealot and arms dealer.

Critics were not nearly as impressed with this film, as it received only 30% from Rotten Tomatoes. The charming use of ludicrous gore and violence that made the first film an underground hit makes the sequel dull and tiresome—accordingly, it can only expect around $12 million over the weekend.

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