Rating: About Ratings
Opens: 06/24/2016
Running Time: 87
Rated: PG-13
Cast: Blake Lively, Óscar Jaenada, Brett Cullen and Sedona Legge.
Crew: Director: Jaume Collet-Serra. Producers: Lynn Harris and Matti Leshem. Executive Producer: Douglas C. Merrifield. Screenwriter: Anthony Jaswinski. Cinematographer: Flavio Martinez Labiano.
REVIEW: By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

I love movies about sharks attacking people. A few of my favorites are “Open Water,” which is actually based on a true story, “Deep Blue Sea” with LL Cool J and Samuel L. Jackson” and of course “Jaws.” Now, I’m also adding “The Shallows” to my list.

“The Shallows” is directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, whose work includes the terrific horror movie, “Orphan” and Liam Neeson’s, “Non-Stop,” “Unknown” and “Run all Night.” And while “The Shallows” is a small budget flick, it’s big on thrills and puts to good use every second of its nail-biting 87 minutes run time.

Blake Lively stars as Nancy Adams, a veteran surfer who dropped out of medical school after her mother died of cancer. Her father (Brett Cullen, TV’s “Person of Interest”) has tried to convince Nancy she should continue to pursue her dream, but Nancy’s heart just isn’t in it anymore.

Hoping to clear her mind from everything, she decides to take a break and head for Mexico to a secret and stunningly beautiful beach called "Paradise" that her mother always talked about.

Nancy plans to hook up with her best friend and catch up on old times and catch some waves.

She meets a friendly resident named Carlos (Oscar Jaenada) and he offers to take her to the secluded beach in his truck. They strike up a friendly conversation on the ride over and before arriving, Nancy gets a call from her friend. She’s been partying a lot and isn’t feeling well and tells Nancy she won’t be able to hang out with her.

Nancy isn’t about to let all this paradise go to waste. She decides to take it all in on her own. She waxes her surf board, slips into her snug bikini and makes her way into the water. If only she had brought her younger sister Chloe (Sedona Legge) with her, things might have turned out differently.

Granted, Nancy is a professional surfer and all, but there’s no one around and she just jumps in and does her thing.

She does come across a couple of other surfers who speak very little English. They’re surprised to learn she’s from Houston, Texas and not California.

They are also enjoying beach and have Go Pro cameras with them which literally become a life saver for Nancy.

When the guys decide to leave, it’s just Nancy in the middle of the pristine, blue water. Or so it seems.

Within minutes, a hungry, great white shark is looking for dinner and Nancy is it. The vicious shark knocks Nancy off her board and takes a huge bite out of her leg, leaving her writhing in pain and clinging to a rock protruding from the water. It’s hardly a safe haven because the tide will come in and Nancy’s options of escape become slimmer by the minute even though she’s a mere 200 yards from the shore.

The only thing keeping Nancy from losing it is her talking aloud about what her next moves will be and a seagull with a broken wing that stays by her side.

Meanwhile, this shark isn’t about to let Nancy off the hook. He smells blood and means business. And while Nancy comes up with some strategic maneuvers, your heart sinks when they don’t pan out for her and time is clearly not on her side.

“The Shallows” ramps up the drama when the two surfers reappear and Nancy tries to tell them to get out of the water. Of course they don’t quite understand her. They attempt to make their way over to her, but it doesn’t end well for them at all.

Collet-Serra really puts the audience front and center of the action and does a fabulous job at capturing the desperation and peril.

Surprisingly, the best moments of “The Shallows” is when we don’t actually see the entire shark, but get mere glimpses of him underwater as he’s planning his sneaky attacks. In fact, when the shark does appear, the thing looks really cheesy and not nearly as menacing.

Still, “The Shallows” is a relentlessly gripping and exciting survivalist tale and a perfect, little summer thriller....

Rated: R
Opens: 06/24/2016
The Neon Demon

Rated: G
Opens: 06/17/2016
Finding Dory

Rated: PG-13
Opens: 06/17/2016
Central Intelligence

Rated: PG-13
Opens: 06/10/2016
Now You See Me 2

Rated: R
Opens: 06/10/2016
The Conjuring 2

Rated: R
Opens: 06/03/2016
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping


Brian's Song Title: Brian's Song
Year Released: 1971
Running Time: 90
Production Company: Sony (Screen Gems)
Director: Buzz Kulik
Director of Photography: Joseph F. Biroc
Screenwriter: William Blinn
Author: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

REVIEW: Now with summer behind us, the arrival of fall means weekends attending and watching plenty of football games. Whether they’re college, pro or high school, I’m all over them. I’m looking forward to attending a few games at the San Francisco 49ers new Levi’s Stadium.

On the college front, my husband Rickey is a former UC Davis player/alum and...

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 <b> (June 21)</b> Title: My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (June 21)
Year Released: 2016
Running Time: 94
Production Company: Universal Pictures
Director: Kirk Jones
Review By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs


Fans of the 2002 surprise hit movie, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” had to wait a long time for a follow-up to their favorite Greek family dramedy.

But, the Portokalos clan is back and crazier than ever in “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2.”

This zany comedy packs some pretty hearty laughs throughout its 94 minutes run time.

While Screenwriter/actor Nia Vardalos (TV’s “Star vs. The Forces of Evil”) rehashes some of the jokes and themes of the original movie, they still work like left-over Spanakopita.

The Greek love story focuses on Toula (Vardalos) and her non-Greek husband, Ian (John Corbett, TV’s “Parenthood”). They’re trying not to let life get in the way of their marriage. But it’s a tall order to find some quality time because they have their hands full with their college bound, teen daughter Paris (Elena Kampouris, TV’s “American Odyssey”).

She wants to get away from Chicago and attend school in New York. Mom and Dad want her to stay close to home and go to Northwestern. Paris’ grandfather Gus (a very funny Michael Constantine) is worried that she’ll never find a nice Greek boy to marry and “have babies with.” It’s the same pressure play he put on Toula when she was growing up.

That’s just the beginning of this broadly drawn comedy. The feta really hits the fan when Gus discovers after nearly 50 years of wedded bliss to Maria (Lainie Kazan, “Pixels”) their marriage is invalid because a priest never signed their marriage certificate.

Maria is shocked and insists Gus go all out this time and propose the right way and make this big, fat Greek wedding special.

Headaches, heartaches and several mistakes unfold with Aunt Voula (a funny Andrea Martin, TV’s “Modern Family”) in charge of the entire affair.

But she’s not the only one who is good for laughs in “my Big Fat Greek Wedding 2.” Portokalos clan matriarch Mana-Yiayia (Bess Meisler, TV’s “Eagleheart”) has some silly and funny scene-stealing moments of her own.


Gag Reel-- Laugh along with The Family as they make the film.

My Big Fat Greek Dinner-- Grab a seat, fill a plate and share a family meal with the cast of My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2. Nia Vardalos, John Corbett, Joey Fatone, Ian Gomez, Lainie Kazan and Michael Constantine take part in a round-table retrospective shot inside the now famous Portokalos family restaurant, dancing zorbas. this featurette includes an in-depth look at the making of the film, the gargantuan success of its predecessor and how one doesn't have to be Greek to feel like a member of the Portokalos family

Making The Greekquel-- An inside look at the making of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” featuring on-set footage plus cast and crew interviews to show what it takes to bring a fan favorite back to life. Nia Vardalos, John Corbett, and cast members share some behind the scenes secrets, and Elena Kampouris and director Kirk Jonestalk about working alongside the original cast as they shoot this follow-up.

Note: "My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2" is available on Blu-ray with Digital HD and Ultraviolet and DVD.

10 Cloverfield Lane <b>(June 14)</b> Title: 10 Cloverfield Lane (June 14)
Year Released: 2016
Running Time: 105
Production Company: Paramount Pictures
Director: Dan Trachtenberg.
Review By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs


Producer J. J. Abram’s “10 Cloverfield Lane” is a stunning sci-fi thriller and hands down one of the best movies of the year.

Abrams calls “10 Cloverfield Lane” a “blood relative” rather than a sequel to his 2008 hit movie, “Cloverfield.”

Directed by Dan Trachtenberg (“Portal: No Escape”), “10 Cloverfield Lane” is far from predictable and the tight story is bolstered by fantastic performances particularly from John Goodman (“Trumbo”).

Goodman plays a burly ex-Navy guy named Howard whose doomsday outlook on life has led him to build an underground bunker that will protect him from aliens, terrorists and even a nuclear attack.

Howard’s bunker is a pretty impressive place. It’s stocked with loads of canned food items, weapons, videos and appliances that run on his creative back- up generator. He has everything and more to survive if something jumps off.

But is Howard overly paranoid or simply being smart and prepared?

The film’s screenwriters Damien Chazelle (“Whiplash”), Josh Campbell (“The Chronicles of Narnia, The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe”) and Matthew Stuecken (Producer, “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra.”) sure do shake things up and mess with our minds about Howard’s mental stability.

Equally worried is Michelle, (a terrific Mary Elizabeth Winstead, “A Good Day to Die Hard”) who in hindsight probably wishes she hadn’t argued with her boyfriend Ben (Bradley Cooper, “Joy” and TV’s “Limitless”) and abruptly jumped in her car to get away from him.

The last thing Michelle remembers is briefly talking to Ben on her cellphone and then suddenly being plowed into by something and her car flipping into a ravine.

When she awakes, she’s in a strange, locked room with an IV sticking out of one arm, the other is handcuffed and her leg shackled to a funky looking bed.

Howard (Goodman) enters her room wearing a menacing glare and tells Michelle he rescued her and is now saving her life from an attack. He insists on not letting her leave until it’s safe to do so which could be as long as one or two years.

Naturally Michelle is freaking out now and discovers she’s not Howard’s only houseguest. There’s a talkative guy named Emmett (John Gallagher Jr., TV’s “The Newsroom” and upcoming movie, “Hush”) who is also holed up in a corner room and looks like he’s seen better days. Turns out Emmett helped Howard build the bunker and now is forced to stay inside it too.

Michelle and Emmett hit it off fairly well. She soon confides in him and when Howard’s explanations about her capture don’t add up she begins to question his motives. This leads her to launch an escape plan.

But there’s a whole lot more going on in “10 Cloverfield Lane” than meets the eye. The eerie, nail-biting score from Bear McCreary (TV’s “The Walking Dead”) ramps up the tension throughout “10 Cloverfield Lane.”
(Highly Recommended).

Eddie The Eagle <b>(June 14)</b> Title: Eddie The Eagle (June 14)
Year Released: 2016
Running Time: 105
Production Company: 20th Century Fox
Director: Dexter Fletcher.
Review By: By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs


By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs

If you like underdog, feel-good sports movies, “Eddie the Eagle” is one to add to the collection.

The movie is “loosely based” on the true story of Great Britain’s Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards played by Taron Egerton (“Legend”).

Edwards was a scrawny, geeky looking kid who had bad knees. Ever since he was little he had to wear a brace on his leg. He hardly looked like an athlete or that he would ever grow up and become one.

Still, that didn’t stop Eddie from dreaming or believing that one day he’d represent Great Britain and become an Olympic ski jumper.

His mother, Janette (Jo Hartley, TV’s “Vera”) always believed in Eddie and offered support at every turn. His father, Terry (Keith Allen, TV’s “Death in Paradise”) didn’t initially. He wanted Eddie to think about a stable career and work as a plasterer like him. Eddie’s dad finally comes around and gets on board.

Eddie tried downhill skiing, but the competition and the sport overall was just too fierce and so Eddie looked at something else he could attempt to do successfully.

He found it in ski jumping. It had no rivals. He could truly own it since his country hadn’t competed and had a winner in the category since the 1920s.
After convincing his parents, Eddie heads off to Germany to train. It’s here he meets Bronson Peary (a terrific Hugh Jackman, “Chappie”), a former skier, turned alcoholic and snowplower.
When Eddie discovers who Bronson is, he asks him to train him because he needs to complete a few 60 plus meter jumps in order to qualify for the Olympics.

Bronson isn’t interested in helping Eddie. But the kid just doesn’t quit. After taking plenty of painful and near death type falls, Eddie gets up each time and keeps going. Bronson sees that Eddie has so much heart, fight and determination in him and agrees to work with him.

It ultimately pays off. Eddie becomes the media darling at the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary. He soared to record setting ski-jumping heights and sealed his legacy as the first competitor to represent Great Britain in Olympic ski jumping.

London Has Fallen <b>(June 14)</b> Title: London Has Fallen (June 14)
Year Released: 2016
Running Time: 99
Production Company: Lionsgate Films
Director: Babek Najafi.
Review By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs


The success of the 2013 action movie,” Olympus has Fallen,” spawned this riveting sequel “London has Fallen” which also stars Gerard Butler (“Gods of Egypt”).

After saving President Benjamin Asher (“My All-American”) from a White House terrorist attack in the first movie, Secret Service Agent Mike Banning (Butler) gets thrown into the thick of things once again.

As much as Mike would like to stay at home in Washington, D.C. with his lovely, pregnant wife Leah (Radha Mitchell, “Olympus has Fallen”), duty calls.

President Asher(Eckhart)has to head to London for the state funeral of the British Prime Minister. Nearly 40 world leaders will be there as well. And the suddenness of it all poses a security nightmare for Banning and the head of the Secret Service, Lynn Jacobs (Angela Bassett, TV’s “American Horror Story”).

Not only does the top general (Robert Forster, TV’s “The Last Man Standing”) and the Secretary of Defense (Melissa Leo, “The Big Short”) have to get a strategic plan in place, but also deal with the other agents sworn to protect and serve.

Banning gets Leah’s blessing to go since it’s only going to be for three days. And she assures him she’ll be fine because her mother is going to stay with her until he comes back.
Banning and his team devise a plan of action to protect the president.
But what’s that saying about the best laid plans?

Almost as soon as they touch down in London, those plans definitely go astray and leave Vice-President Trumbull (Morgan Freeman, “Ben-Hur”) and everyone else at the White House looking awfully worried.

It turns out the Prime Minister’s funeral wasn’t an accident, but rather the work of a maniacal arms dealer named Aamir Barkawi (Alon Moni Aboutboul, TV’s “Agent X”) who is out for some serious revenge because a US-operated drone blew up his daughter in Pakistan.

Everyone has to pay now.

Aamir and his well-trained men have put some thought into the explosive attacks that decimate many of London’s major landmarks. The terrorists disguise themselves as civil servants to reign down all the mass destruction which is pretty elaborately staged.

Things get awfully hairy when Banning nearly runs out of options to protect the president. He winds up getting kidnapped by the terrorists who want to televise his execution.

But Banning, earned his reputation as being the best Secret Service agent in the world and lives up to it.
Alice Through By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs:


In Disney’s “Alice Through the Looking Glass: An IMAX 3D Experience,” the unforgettable characters from Lewis Carroll’s beloved stories, Alice returns to the whimsical world of Underland and travels back in time to save the Mad Hatter.

“Alice Through the Looking Glass: An IMAX 3D Experience” opens at 7:30 p.m. on May 26 at The Esquire IMAX Theatre. Tickets are on sale at the theatre box office and online at

“Alice Through the Looking Glass: An IMAX 3D Experience” will be digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of An IMAX 3D Experience with proprietary IMAX DMR (Digital Re-mastering) technology. The crystal-clear images, coupled with the Esquire IMAX Theatre’s six story high and 80 feet wide screen, customized theatre geometry and powerful digital audio, create a unique environment that will make audiences feel as if they are in the movie.

The Esquire IMAX Theatre is located at 1211 K Street in downtown Sacramento, CA. For information on tickets and showtimes, please call 916-443-IMAX (4629) or visit the website at

Villa Capri By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs:


Broad Green Pictures has finalized a deal to distribute Academy Award nominee Ron Shelton’s “Villa Capri“ starring Academy Award winners Morgan Freeman (Now You See Me 2, Unforgiven, Lucy) and Tommy Lee Jones (“Jason Bourne,” “The Fugitive,” “JFK”) in the United States and to co-produce the film with Entertainment One (eOne), Billy Gerber and Endurance’s Steve Richards. John Mass and Alan Simpson are executive producers on the film.

“Villa Capri” will be released nationwide just ahead of the Labor Day weekend on August 25, 2017 and is slated to begin principal photography in New Mexico this summer.

The two-hander action comedy is in the vein of “Midnight Run” about an ex-FBI agent (Jones) and an ex-mob lawyer in the witness protection program (Freeman) having to put aside their petty rivalry on the golf course to fend off a mob hit.

It was previously announced that the film is being financed by eOne and Endurance Media. eOne will directly distribute the action comedy in Canada, the UK, Australia/New Zealand, Benelux and Spain. Sierra/Affinity is handling foreign sales for the remaining international rights at the 2016 Cannes Film Market.

A Labor Day targeted opening has proven successful for Broad Green in the past. In September 2015, the studio successfully opened the comedy adventure “A Walk in the Woods” about two friends (played by Robert Redford and Nick Nolte) who make the improbable decision to hike the 2,190-mile Appalachian Trail. The film outperformed expectations, grossing nearly $30 million.

President of Acquisitions and Co-Productions Marc Danon negotiated the deal on behalf of Broad Green Pictures.

Freeman and Jones are both represented by CAA. Shelton is managed by Oasis Media Group.


Entertainment One Ltd. (LSE: ETO) is a leading international entertainment company that specializes in the acquisition, production and distribution of film and television content.

The company’s comprehensive network extends around the globe including Canada, the U.S., the UK, Ireland, Spain, Benelux, France, Germany, Scandinavia, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

Through established Film and Television divisions, the company provides extensive expertise in film distribution, television and music production, family programming, merchandising and licensing, and digital content.

Its current rights library is exploited across all media formats and includes more than 40,000 film and television titles, 4,500 hours of television programming and 45,000 music tracks.



Broad Green Pictures is developing “The Fight Before Christmas,” a comedic holiday pitch from “Daddy’s Home” writer Brian Burns.

Burns, who is also known for writing hit shows including the CBS dramatic TV series “Blue Bloods” and HBO’s “Entourage” will pen the script. The film will be produced by Matt Alvarez (“Straight Outta Compton,” “The Ride Along” franchise).

After 700 years of marriage and feeling unappreciated for her continued Christmas contributions, Mrs. Claus leaves Santa just two weeks before the holiday. With the fate of the Christmas in jeopardy, Santa flies from the North Pole to New York to win her heart back and save Christmas.

“Brian has a talent for creating dynamic and hilarious stories that audiences gravitate towards,” said Alvarez. “It will be a pleasure to work with him and I know that together we will make a memorable holiday film."

Broad Green Pictures’ Gabriel and Daniel Hammond add “as we continue to grow, original productions like “The Fight Before Christmas” will become a bigger focus for the studio. We are confident that this film, under the leadership of Matt will help build a strong base for our library of audience favorites.”

Josh Reinhold will oversee the project on behalf of Matt Alvarez’ production company, while Lauren McCarthy will oversee the project on behalf of Broad Green Pictures.

The deal was brokered on behalf of Burns by Karl Austen. Christopher Tricarico, EVP, Business & Legal Affairs and General Counsel handled for Broad Green.

Burns is represented by CAA and Jackoway Tyerman Wertheimer Austen Mandelbaum Morris & Klein.

The studio’s upcoming slate includes “The Infiltrator,” “Brain on Fire,” “The Dark Horse” and “Bad Santa 2,” a co-production with Miramax. The studio will also release Terrence Malick’s Voyage of Time and his untitled project starring Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara and Michael Fassbender.

Previously released films include: “A Walk in the Woods,” the critically acclaimed “99 Homes,” “I Smile Back,” “Learning to Drive” and “Knight of Cups.”

Battle... By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs:


Fox Searchlight Pictures’ Presidents Stephen Gilula and Nancy Utley announced that principal photography for “Battle of The Sexes” has begun in Los Angeles.

The film stars Oscar-nominees Emma Stone (“Birdman,” “The Help”) Steve Carell (“Foxcatcher” and “The Big Short”), and Elisabeth Shue (“Leaving Las Vegas,” “Chasing Mavericks”) along with Sarah Silverman (“Masters of Sex”, “I Smile Back”), Alan Cumming (“The Good Wife”, “X-Men 2”), Andrea Riseborough (“Birdman”), Eric Christian Olsen (“Csi: Los Angeles”) and Natalie Morales (“The Grinder”).

Rounding out the cast is Austin Stowell (“Bridge Of Spies” And “Whiplash”), Wallace Langham (“Ruby Sparks,” “Little Miss Sunshine”), Jessica Mcnamee (“Last Days Of Summer”), Mickey Sumner (“The End Of The Tour”) and Bill Pullman (“LBJ,” “The Equalizer”).

Directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, creators of the Oscar-winning “Little Miss Sunshine” And Indie Favorite “Ruby Sparks,” have turned their attention to a period in 1970’s America that presaged a cultural tsunami.

The electrifying 1973 tennis match between World number one Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and ex-champ and serial hustler Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) was billed as the “Battle of the Sexes” and became the most watched televised sports event of all time.

The match caught the zeitgeist and sparked a global conversation on gender equality, spurring on the feminist movement. Trapped in the media glare, King and Riggs were on opposites sides of a binary argument, but off-court each was fighting more personal and complex battles. With a supportive husband urging her to fight the Establishment for equal pay, the fiercely private King was also struggling to come to terms with her own sexuality, while Riggs gambled his legacy and reputation in a bid to relive the glories of his past.

Together, Billie and Bobby served up a cultural spectacle that resonated far beyond the tennis courts and animated the discussions between men and women in bedrooms and boardrooms around the world.

The film is being produced by Cloud Eight Films’ Christian Colson and Decibel Films’ Danny Boyle, along with Robert Graf, with a screenplay by Academy Award-winning Simon Beaufoy (“Slumdog Millionaire,” “127 Hours” and “The Full Monty”).

Producer Robert Graf previously collaborated with the directors on “Ruby Sparks” and worked on such projects such as “Hail, Caesar!” and “No Country For Old Men.”

“If all men and women worked as well together as Jon Dayton and Valerie Faris,” said Boyle and Colson, “the world would be a more harmonious place. Together with Emma, Steve and the rest of our fabulous cast they are the perfect team to realise Simon Beaufoy's brilliant ballad of Billie and Bobby--the perfect odd couple.”

“The irony isn't lost on us that we are a husband-and-wife team directing the Battle of the Sexes. As soon as we read Simon's script we knew we had to make this film. We feel so fortunate to have gathered such an amazing group of artists, both behind and in front of camera,” said Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris.

"Jon and Val have been a part of the Searchlight family since their debut with “Little Miss Sunshine,” said Utley and Gilula. “Their ability to create real, believable characters and situations while also subtly commenting on culture is unique, and we can't wait to see their take on this watershed moment in sports history and social change. We are proud to be reuniting with them, along with Steve, Emma, Danny and Christian, all of whom are family to us."

"I'm extremely pleased to be working again with Jonathan and Valerie as well as with Christian and Danny whose work I have long admired,” said Robert Graf. “I remember watching the original Battle of the Sexes in 1973 and, even as a boy, recognizing it as both an irresistible pop spectacle and part of an important cultural conversation about equality and respect -- a conversation that continues vigorously today and to which we hope our film will contribute."

Editor’s Note: Some information used in this report obtained from publicity department press releases. Photos: Courtesy of movie studios.