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Release Date: June 21, 2013
Studio: Pixar/Disney
Director: Dan Scanlon (Tracy, Mater and the Ghostlight)
Voice Cast: Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Helen Mirren, Sean Hayes, Dave Foley, Charlie Day, Alfred Molina, Tyler Labine, Nathan Fillion, and Aubrey Plaza.
Plot: Mike Wazowski and James P. Sullivan are an inseparable pair, but that wasn’t always the case. From the moment these two mismatched monsters met they couldn’t stand each other. “Monsters University” unlocks the door to how Mike and Sulley overcame their differences and became the best of friends.

Thoughts: Honestly, I’m not sure when I’ll be seeing Monsters University. I want to see it, but I’m afraid it will be a let down on the level of Cars 2. And I like Monsters Inc much more than I do Cars. In fact, Monsters Inc is a top five “all time” movie in my eyes. The movie has a perfect blend of comedy and action- with some of the most likeable characters in animated movie history.

Monsters University is a prequel. I’m not a fan of prequels for a number of reasons, the first being that all of the character development we saw in the original film is out the window. These are versions of the characters from (way) before we met them, which pretty much means they are different characters. The story focuses on them in college, which means that it is a very different type of story. Don’t get me wrong, I love the fact that they are expanding Monstropolis, but I think I would have preferred a spinoff/sequel with new characters (and returning characters in supporting roles) in the “new” city powered by children’s laughs, rather than a prequel.

How about you? Are you excited for Monsters University? Would you have preferred a sequel?

This weekend brings us a man who can bring characters from a book to life, along with the continued fight between vampires and werewolves, and an epic showdown of vikings verse aliens verse monsters.

Inkheart from director Iain Softley (The Skeleton Key) is based on a novel by Cornelia Funke, and stars Brendan Fraser as a man who can bring characters from a book to life by reading aloud.  When he is taken hostage by the evil Capricorn (Andy Serkis), his daughter (Eliza Bennett) must rally her friends, both real and imaginary, to rescue him. The great Helen Mirren co-stars.

If you are in the mood for supernaural action instead, there is Underworld: Rise of the Lycans. Rise is the  third entry into the Underworld series and is an origin story that uncovers the cause of the centuries-old feud between the vampires and werewolves (aka the Death Dealers and the Lycans). Rhona Mitra, Michael Sheen, and Bill Nighy star in the film.

Also opening today, but in a limited release, is Outlander.  The films stars James Caviezel, John Hurt, Sophia Myles, and Ron Perlman with direction by Howard McCain.  Outlander’s plot is really difficult to explain, but in a nutshell it is Vikings teaming up with an alien (Caviezel) to fight a monster.  Oh, and did I mention they fight with futuristic Iron Age weaponry.

I think I’ll be staying in this weekend, how about you?

While I can’t help but imagine what this film would have been like had Brad Pitt and Edward Norton not been replaced with Russell Crowe and Ben Affleck, the trailer is still pretty engaging. Crowe portrays a reporter who is investigating a murder connected to a politician (Affleck), who he happens to be old friends with. The movie is a remake of the award winning BBC mini series of the same name. Helen Mirren and Rachel McAdams co-star.