Opening this Weekend

xXx: Return of Xander Cage


The Founder

20th Century Women

The Autopsy of Jane Doe

Maliglutit (Searchers)

Hello Destroyer

This Weekend’s Box Office Predictions

  1. xXx: Return of Xander Cage
  2. Split
  3. Hidden Figures
  4. La La Land
  5. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

What You Should See

Y’know how I mentioned last time week that January is usually “F*ck you” month for new movie releases? The dumping ground for movies the studios know aren’t going to do well and would rather not associate themselves with? Well, it’s still January, there are seven new movies opening this weekend in Edmonton, and I would honestly recommend all of them. Split is looking like a return to form for M. Night Shyamalan (and I don’t just mean Signs Shyamalan but, like, Unbreakable Shyamalan), The Founder looks quietly amazing and deserves your attention, 20th Century Women is, as of this writing, the highest rated new movie of the week on Rotten Tomatoes, The Autopsy of Jane Doe is looking like an unusually smart horror movie, and even Maliglutit and Hello Destroyer, this week’s smaller movie releases, have intensely engaging trailers that makes me want to see them.

Now if you were paying attention, the one movie you may have noticed me fail to mention in that last paragraph is xXx: Return of Xander Cage, the very first movie featured in our weekend guide, and that’s for a very good reason. You see, the xXx franchise and I have a funny relationship, one that began in my youth when the original came out (which, y’know, probably makes sense since how would I have a relationship with something that didn’t yet exist, right?). I can distinctly remember what a star Vin Diesel was back in those days, and I can distinctly remember just how excited all of my friends were about seeing it, and I loved seeing movies with friends. But something was different with xXx. Something vague, but still disturbing. I’ll never know if my friends saw that movie or what they thought of it, we never talked about it. And I never saw it. I guess that’s not actually a very compelling story, it was all stream of consciousness really, I just wanted to see if I could write something interesting about xXx. Turns out I couldn’t. Anywho, some critics seem to be happier with xXx: Return of Xander Cage than I thought they would be, but even they will admit it’s stupid with a capital ‘F’, so on this one I’m going to have to conclude that seeing xXx: Return of Xander Cage is the movie-going equivalent of appointing Dan Coats to the office of Director of National Intelligence — not necessarily a bad choice, but oddly self defeating.