“Take Me Home Tonight” is Topher
Grace’s turn to do a slacker movie. He
plays Matt Franklin, a 30-something college-educated guy who still lives
with Mom and Dad and works at a video store at the local mall.
He just can’t seem to get started with his life, though he’s
obviously bright. It’s as if he’s
afraid of making a mistake, so he just doesn’t try anything at all.
His best buddy is Barry (Dan Fogler), another underachiever who just
got fired from selling cars at the local dealership, a job that he hated,
anyway. Matt’s always regretted not
following up on his high school crush for Tori (Teresa Palmer), and he
thinks his life might change when his high school class holds a reunion, and
Tori is there. Despite the foul
language being tossed around, the R rating is really for the drug use rather
than an overload of nudity or sexual situations.
Barry imbibes in everything available, Matt tries to impress Tori
with a vintage car that’s not his, and Matt’s policeman Dad has the
golden opportunity to make everyone suffer, but remarkably decides that
forgiveness is more important than punishment.
There’s no real spark from any of the characters except Wendy (Anna
Faris), Matt’s twin sister. She
deserves better than this lame copycat that should go to DVD quickly.
“I Am Number Four” will also go to
DVD quickly, mainly because of the somewhat obscure cast:
Alex Pettyfer is the lead (he’s also the lead in “Beastly,” so
he’s quickly overcoming his obscurity) in a sci-fi/romance that tries to
capitalize on the extreme recent popularity of teens with special powers.
John (Pettyfer) and Henri (Timothy Olyphant) are human-looking but
are really from another planet. They’re
among the last of their breed, and being relentlessly pursued by the aliens
who invaded their world and are determined to wipe out even the escaped
remnant. We begin with the merciless
elimination of Numbers One, Two, and Three, and John is Number Four.
Earthlings, of course, remain oblivious to all this interplanetary
drama in their midst. Henri, John’s
“protector,” tries to keep them moving, constantly changing locales and
schools, but when they land in a small town in
, and John meets Sarah (Dianna Agron), he suddenly decides he wants to quit
running. Even while he’s trying to
learn how to manage his superpowers, the pursuers literally sniff him out,
and fortunately another of his kind, Number Six (the ubiquitous Teresa
Palmer) arrives to help do battle, but in between we have silly high school
bullying, the poignant hesitancy of adolescents attracted to each other, and
good old teen angst. But though the
adults will stay away from this one in droves, there really are some pretty
good special effects, and this very-adult reviewer hesitantly predicts that
Dianna Agron will soon land some more substantial roles.
Dr. Ronald P. Salfen, Co-Pastor,
United Presbyterian Church,