Summer movies still worth seeing

Patrick St. Patrick

“Inception”: (five stars out of five)

From the moment the first frame lights up on the screen, “Inception” bends the concept of reality in a way that hasn’t been seen since great films like the blockbuster hit “The Matrix” and the independent film “Donnie Darko.”

Written and directed by Christopher Nolan, the genius behind the two latest and hugely successful Batman films, “Inception” offers a story that challenges the main characters to maneuver their way through four different levels of the subconscious mind.

The main character, a dream extraction expert named Cobb, played by Leonardo DiCaprio (“Shutter Island”), is the head of a team employed to steal the ideas from the heads of corporations.

The complexities make the film an engaging experience for someone who wants an intellectual challenge, but it may be too much for the casual moviegoer who just wants an evening’s escape. “Inception” causes moviegoers to question their own reality and leaves them wondering whether or not they too are in a dream.

“The Expendables”: (three stars)

This is an action movie that understands the phrase, “Don’t pull any punches.” From start to finish, “The Expendables” overwhelms the screen with a mixture of explosions and body parts.

The film feels more like Sylvester Stallone’s last action film, “Rambo,” than it does anything else.

However, “The Expendables” falls drastically short when it comes to having any emotional pull. The two main Expendables, played by Stallone and Jason Statham (“The Transporter”), have very contrived emotional motivations.

When the movie was off of the romantic vibe, however, it was what you would expect of an action movie that, literally, contains every major action star in the last 20 years — sans Jean-Claude Van Damme, Steven Seagal and the immortal Chuck Norris.

The film even includes a pointless but fun scene with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

If you have testosterone flowing through your veins, see this movie. If you have no desire to watch hundreds of explosions and body parts littering the screen, then I suggest a different activity.

“Twilight Saga: Eclipse”: (three stars)

The third installment of the Twilight Saga hit screens this summer with a loud burst of screams from teenage girls across the country. One of the most successful summer movies of all time, “Eclipse” offered fans of the series the closest interpretation of the books to date.

With stunning performances by Robert Pattinson (“Remember Me”) and Taylor Lautner (“Valentine’s Day”), “Eclipse” proved to well surpass the two previous “Twilight” films.

The film’s computer animation, particularly the wolves, was subpar. Though they’re supposed to look like that, it wasn’t believable — it needed to blend better with the live-action backgrounds of the film.

The romance between Edward and Bella is definitely obsessive and co-dependent, but the characters seem to fit into that kind of fictional relationship.

This is a story that is for any fan of romance or the supernatural. Unless you want to be as lost as Charlie Swan trying to father his teenage daughter, see “Twilight” and “New Moon” before this film.

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