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Kosher Cinema: April Movie Picks For JDaters®

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Hey there, JDaters®, it’s been a while, but I’m back with another edition of Kosher Cinema. The Oscars have come and gone, and while the biggest baller Jew in Hollywood, Steven Speilberg, may have been upset by Ang Lee in the Best Director’s race, and Seth MacFarlane brought out Ted to participate in an uninspired and mostly unfunny Jews-rule-Hollywood joke, several members of the tribe did walk away with Oscars, including Daniel Day Lewis, who won a record third Best Actor award.

The Chosen Feature

Room 237 is a new documentary about Stanley Kubrick’s classic horror film The Shining. The film, which features interviews with several devoted Kubrick followers offering often bizarre interpretations of the movie, is incredibly interesting, and features some pretty extensive discussion of Kubrick and the Holocaust. It’s beautifully filmed, and if you haven’t seen The Shining on Blu-Ray, it features some of the clearest shots from the film you’ll ever see. And whether you find the theories offered to be compelling or absurd, it will certainly cause you to think about The Shining in a new way.

The JScale

Evil Dead – 1.5/5 Stars of David

This remake of the Sam Raimi classic stars a cast of mostly unknowns. Jane Levy, who plays Mia in the film, is Jewish, and Raimi, who’s also Jewish, serves as a producer. Featuring a screenplay by Diablo Cody, whose previous horror film, Jennifer’s Body, was not kindly received by critics, it remains to be seen whether the remake can capture the fun of the Bruce Campbell-blessed original.

Jurassic Park 3D – 3/5 Stars of David

Why it’s necessary to make a 3D release of a film which has several fully-immersive theme park rides at Universal Studios around the world is beyond me, but I guess it has to do with MAKING BOATLOADS OF MONEY.  Jurassic Park was one of the more profitable films of the 1990′s and now it’s back, and… better? Whatever may come of it, Jurassic Park 3D is still chock full o’ Jews, from Spielberg behind the camera to Jeff Goldblum in front of it. And it was a pretty great movie.

42 – 1/5 Stars of David

42 tells the story of Jackie Robinson, who pretty much everyone should know was the first African-American to play Major League Baseball. Robinson played for the Brooklyn Dodgers, a team with a heavily Jewish fan base (in fact, it was the team that my grandfather cheered for). So there’s some Jewish connection on that end. In the film itself, Harrison Ford, who is of Jewish descent, plays Branch Rickey, the GM of the Dodgers.

Scary Movie 5 – 1/5 Stars of David

It’s Scary Movie 5. If you don’t know the formula by now, there’s not much I’ll be able to do to explain it. If you go to see this movie, you’re probably just a glutton for punishment anyways. Featuring neither of the leads from the first four movies, we’re now left with Ashley Tisdale, who happens to be half-Jewish, in the lead role. Oh and there’s Lindsay Lohan and Charlie Sheen. Enjoy.

Oblivion – 0/5 Stars of David

Nary a Jew to be found in this Tom Cruise vehicle, which sees him serving as a soldier repairing drones on a battle-scarred and mostly abandoned Earth of the future. Morgan Freeman and Jaime Lannister are along for the ride. It should be slickly, if emotionlessly, directed if Joseph Kosinski’s previous work on Tron:Legacy is any indication.

Pain & Gain – 2/5 Stars of David

Pain & Gain is based on a true story about a group of bodybuilders in South Florida who turned to a life of crime, and eventually murder. It stars The Rock and Mark Wahlberg, and is directed by Michael Bay, who is of the Tribe, and also stars Russian-Israeli-model Bar Paly in a supporting role. It is nice to see Bay directing a non-Transformers film for the first time in a decade, but unless barbells are now made of C4, it’s hard to see how Bay will fit in his signature explosions.

The Big Wedding – 1/5 Stars of David

Justin Zackham, last seen helming the sensational and sadly canceled FX drama Lights Out, is back with a remake of the French comedy, Mon Frere Se Marie. It features member of the tribe Ben Barnes, as well as more famous, and way more goyish cast mates Robert DeNiro, Dianne Keaton, Susan Sarandon, Katherine Heigl, Robin Williams, and Amanda Seyfried. Do a good cast and a good writer equal a great movie? Not always. But it’s certainly a better bet this month than Scary Movie 5.

And that’s all folks.

Jonathan Maseng is a Los Angeles based screenwriter and journalist. He is a frequent contributor to the LA Jewish Journal, and his work has appeared in publications around the globe. His mother would like him to find a nice Jewish girl — he’s still looking.
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