David Ayer film

Spacey's a Kitty and the Bad Guys are Good Guys: New Movies for August 5, 2016

Friday, August 05, 2016 Rob Samuelson

This week at the movies is, well, baffling. Both major releases are unlikely, to say the least. Not because a goofy family comedy featuring live action animals or a superhero movie is uncommon. But because of the people involved, these movies seem downright bizarre. Take a look.

Nine Lives
Director: Barry Sonnenfeld
Writers: Matt Allen, Dan Antoniazzi, Gwyn Lurie, Ben Shiffrin, Caleb Wilson
Starring: Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Garner, Robbie Amell, Christopher Walken

For months, since I first heard the premise “Kevin Spacey’s consciousness gets transported into the body of a cat because he didn’t care about his family enough, directed by the guy who did the Men In Black movies,” I have thought that Nine Lives has to be some sort of marketing stunt. This can’t be the full movie, right? The stuff in the trailer is just a smokescreen for a different, less hacky story. It has to be. Because why else would these people care about a story that has already been done in direct-to-video fashion?

I guess I’ll have to see it to find out. I’m flummoxed and immensely curious.

Suicide Squad
Director: David Ayer
Writer: David Ayer
Starring: Will Smith, Margot Robbie, Viola Davis, Jai Courtney, Jared Leto

Supervillains in the DC Comics universe of films -- the ones with Batman versusing Superman and hating humanity -- get recruited by a shadowy government agency to go on missions that are not for the faint of heart. These powerful and deranged criminals are sent into the yuckiest situations possible with little hope of surviving. Hence the title of the movie. You’re smart folks. You get it.

The oddness of this one is the involvement of writer-director David Ayer. I have personally only seen Sabotage from his filmography, although I own a black polo shirt with the Fury logo on it from the time I worked in a movie theater. Anywho, Sabotage is a cranky, grimy, ugly picture that isn’t even all that entertaining, aside from the bonkers haircuts and facial hair sported by the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Josh Holloway. The critics who saw it early did not care for it. They did not care for it so much that DC Comics fans, people who have not seen the movie, have petitioned to get websites like Rotten Tomatoes removed from the internet because of bias against their beloved characters -- again, they have not seen the movie and cannot form an opinion. For my piece, I’ll tell you that the trailers have worked on me. I think the movie looks fun, but that could be way off base. Let’s all go see it and form our own opinions, why don’t we?

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