Media : That’s a wrap

The low-down on this week’s premieres

Strange bedfellows this week: Megaton blockbuster X-Men: The Last Stand cuddles up with a dyed-in the-wool foreign indie. Play nice, fellas.

Kelsey Grammer as Beast in X-Men: The Last Stand.

For what seems like years now, fanboys and other dedicated denizens of comicdom have been emerging en masse from the woodwork to righteously condemn the choice of Bret Ratner as X-director Bryan Singer’s surrogate on the latest (last?) installment of the allegorical funny-book franchise. But lest we forget: It was Singer that bailed to do (the admittedly sweet-looking) Superman Returns — it’s not like the producers pushed him out. And who’s to say? Teasers seem tentatively to suggest that Ratner (Red Dragon, Rush Hour) might’ve managed to kick a mild-to-moderate share of ka-booty in his own right. (If nothing else, Kelsey Grammer as Beast will be worth the price of admission. Next: Prince as Gambit?)

Mountain Patrol tells the based-on-truth story of a determined party of volunteers who risk their lives in the wilds of the Tibetan mountain-country to protect endangered antelopes from illegal poachers. And ... I don’t have a joke about this. (What? You make fun of the nice Tibetan people? Prick.) Good film (review, this page); go see it. From National Geographic Films, but not a doc; in Mandarin and Tibetan, with English subtitles.

So, a little variety this week, no? A chance to expand your cinematic horizons, perhaps? A prime opportunity to fire up the ol’ noggin and do some good, old-fashioned ... aw, screw it. We both know you’re just gonna see The Da Vinci Code again. Ah, well. Enjoy. Tell me who the bad guy is this time. Meantime, see if you can figure out this code: ovrretaed.

Local premiere dates for limited-release films are tentative and can change at the last minute. Please check your local theater listings to confirm showtimes.

- Brian Villalobos