Film Reviews: The Immigrant, Neighbors, Walk of Shame
Frontiers Staff

The Immigrant 
Opens May 16

The Immigrant opens in 1921 as Ewa (Marion Cottilard) and her sister Magda (Angela Sarafyan) arrive at Ellis Island. Magda has tuberculosis, and Ewa is marked for deportation. Enter Bruno (Joaquin Phoenix), who gives Ewa a job in his burlesque house—as a prostitute. This grim, ponderous melodrama soon becomes a grim, ponderous love triangle when Bruno’s magician cousin Orlando (Jeremy Renner) falls in love with Ewa. The characters are mostly despicable, and jealous Bruno’s fights with Orlando over Ewa are ludicrous. Cottilard emotes while Phoenix over-emotes. Even with gorgeous cinematography and period sets, director James Gray’s film is, alas, a handsomely mounted snooze. —Gary M. Kramer

Opens May 9

There are several bellylaughs in this raucous comedy about a pair of new parents, Mac (Seth Rogan) and Kelly (Rose Byrne), whose life is disrupted by their new neighbors, the Delta Psi Beta fraternity. President Teddy (Zac Efron) wants to host a legendary rager, while Mac and Kelly just want quiet. Neighbors offers a frustratingly dumb but intermittently funny game of one-upmanship that never quite reaches Animal House heights. There are dildo fights, babies eating condoms, and gay jokes for amusement, but mostly Efron displays his sexy chest, Rogan displays his outer man-child, and Byrne displays her breasts in the film’s sure-to-be legendary comic scene.  —G.M.K.

Walk of Shame
Opens May 2

Amongst her many qualities, Elizabeth Banks is fearless when she commits to broad comedy (her turn on 30 Rock) or one of her dotty eccentrics (her Effie in The Hunger Games franchise is a wondrous creation), so when she has the opportunity for a leading role, we should rejoice. While she gives it her all in the one-night-stand comedy Walk of Shame, writer-director Steven Brill’s shrill and obvious L.A.-set odyssey never springs to life. There are intermittent pleasures—an opening sequence of newscaster bloopers; Banks’ news anchor Meghan Miles in a dilapidated crack den with three funny/wise dealers/junkies; James Marsden, resplendent in a yellow Marc Jacobs dress. But nothing is sustained. Walk of Shame tries hard to satisfy, but it’s a limp dick. It just can’t keep it up. —Dan Loughry

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