Superheroes on screen

2009-03-06 00:00

A ROMANTIC comedy and a film about superheroes in the United States open in Pietermaritzburg this weekend.

Watchmen, which joins the line-up at CineCentre at the Liberty Midlands Mall, is set in an alternative 1985 U.S. in which costumed superheroes are part of the fabric of everyday society, and the Doomsday Clock — which charts the U.S.’s tension with the Soviet Union — is permanently set at five minutes to midnight.

When one of his former colleagues is murdered, masked vigilante Rorschach (Jackie Earle Haley) sets out to uncover a plot to kill and discredit all past and present superheroes.

As he reconnects with members of his former crime-fighting legion, including Nite Owl II (Patrick Wilson), Silk Spectre II (Malin Akerman) and Dr. Manhattan (Billy Crudup), they uncover a wide-ranging and disturbing conspiracy that not only has links to their shared past but has catastrophic consequences for the future.

The film, directed by Zack Snyder, is based on the 1986 comic book limited-series Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. As with his previous film 300, Snyder closely modelled his storyboards on the comic, but unlike that film opted to use more sets.

Also at CineCentre is New in Town, which stars Renée Zellweger as Lucy Hill, a high-achiever shooting to become a vice president. To show the company president that she has what it takes, she accepts an assignment to restructure one of its small manufacturing plants in Minnesota.

After enduring a frosty reception from the locals, icy roads and freezing weather, she warms up to the small town’s charm, and eventually finds herself being accepted by the community.

When the boss orders her to close down the plant and put the entire community out of work, however, she’s forced to reconsider her goals and priorities. The film also stars Harry Connick Jr.

The film Long Shots, the true story of Jasmine Plummer who, at the age of eleven, became the first female to play in the Pop Warner football tournament in its 56-year history, also joins the line-up at CineCentre, while the comedy Rolemodels moves to NuMetro and Pink Panther 2 is added to the SterKinekor line-up.

— Arts Editor.

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