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Keeping Up With The Joneses Funeral Date

By Genevieve Burgess | DVD Releases | August 10, 2010 |

By Genevieve Burgess | DVD Releases | August 10, 2010 |

Date Night: “The weirdest thing happened to me today. It’s something that hasn’t happened for months, maybe longer. I honestly don’t even remember the last time it happened. It was bizarre. I was sitting in a movie theater, watching a studio comedy, and I was completely overcome by this unfamiliar sensation. I think it might have been happiness. I’m not sure, exactly, since it’s been such a long time since I felt anything akin to that in a multiplex. But that odd sensation was accompanied by laughter. Real laughter. I laughed. Out loud. More than once. And it wasn’t even at stuff I’d already seen in the trailers. When I left the theater, I wasn’t hit by a wave of disappointment. I was in this oddly pleasant mood. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I briefly considered running back into the theater and watching The Last Song again just so I could regain my equilibrium. All this smiling is giving me a miserable fucking headache.” - Dustin Rowles

Death at a Funeral: “While Frank Oz’s Death at a Funeral was decidedly restrained and somewhat lethargic, Neil LaBute unscrews the cap on the American version, although he doesn’t — as you’d expect — shake it up with a lot of dick and fart jokes, black stereotypes, or Martin Lawrence’s BLAM face before he release the cap. It’s still Neil LaBute, the independent director of Your Friends and Neighbors and The Company of Men. He hasn’t assembled an overly crass “urban” version of Death at a Funeral, he’s just allowed the original the breathe, in part by casting several actors known for exaggerating their characters and asking them to reign it in. The result is a mostly happy medium between the British version and what you’d expect of this version based on the marketing.” - Dustin Rowles

The Joneses: “Those movies just happened to be the first ones I saw when I glanced up at my DVD shelf, but they perfectly illustrate the fact that every movie must to some degree establish its narrative for the viewer. Without that, it flounders. So when The Joneses opens with Steve (David Duchovny), Kate (Demi Moore), Mick (Ben Hollingsworth), and Jenn (Amber Heard) driving to their new home as Kate instructed the younger people that their new neighborhood had a high concentration of the teen marketing demo, I had to step back and wonder why she’d bother telling them that. The Joneses are pretending to be a family to subtly push products on people, but this central gimmick is neither held back long enough to function as a plot twist nor established cleanly enough to provide momentum. Borte, working from a story by Randy T. Dinzler, wants us to give him the benefit of the doubt and let the movie coast from the outset on its idea, but he forgets to bother setting that idea up or even explaining it. The film doesn’t work unless you’ve seen the trailer.” - Daniel Carlson

Also released this week: Helen, Letters to God, Triage, Under the Mountain

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Genevieve Burgess is a Features Contributor for Pajiba. You can follow Genevieve Burgess on Twitter.