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Science-fiction fans have been waiting decades for this: Ridley Scott’s return to the genre.
The man who made two of the classics of science-fiction — "Alien" (1979) and "Blade Runner" (1982) — is back with "Prometheus," which does have some links to "Alien," but holds up on its own as a sturdy action drama with some thoughtfulness, too. It follows two archaeologists (Noomi Rapace and Logan Marshall-Green) as they lead a space exploration to a moon pointed to by ancient Earth artifacts. Their thesis: An alien civilization came to our planet and populated it with, well, us. But the search gets complicated by nasty creatures outside, and the mixed motives of the android David (Michael Fassbender), which gives "Prometheus" some daring "2001" overtones. Scott gives us some hellacious action set pieces, a powerful female heroine in Rapace (the Swedish "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo"), and plenty of ideas to chew on.
Another franchise kick-start comes in "Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted," a frenetic and sometimes quite funny continuation of the computer-animated series about Alex the lion (voiced by Ben Stiller) and his Central Park Zoo buddies. This time, they leave Africa for Monte Carlo, and end up getting chased by a deadly animal-control officer (voiced by Frances McDormand), from whom they seek refuge by joining a group of circus animals. The story is a mishmash, mostly connecting one over-the-top sequence to the next. It’s fun but forgettable.
This art-house slate is topped by the French comedy-drama "The Intouchables," a based-on-true-life story of a rich quadriplegic (Francois Cluzet) who forms a friendship with his live-in caretaker, an African-born ex-convict (Omar Sy). The story goes in predictable, Hallmark Channel, directions. But the easygoing chemistry between Cluzet and Sy makes it pleasant.
"Peace, Love & Misunderstanding" has a great cast, but then doesn’t give them much to do. Jane Fonda, Catherine Keener and Elizabeth Olsen play three generations of women in one family. Keener plays an uptight Manhattan lawyer who brings the kids north to meet their hippie grandma (Fonda) in Woodstock — while Olsen plays Keener’s college-age rebel daughter. Director Bruce Beresford ("Driving Miss Daisy") is good to his actresses, even with a underfed script.
Lastly, there is "The Turin Horse," Hungarian director Bela Tarr’s tragedy of 19th-century farm life. The Cricket was unable to screen it this week, so you’re on your own.
Sean P. Means
Utah Blaze vs. Chicago » 7 p.m. Saturday, EnergySolutions Arena, 301 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City. Tickets, www.utblaze.com.
Utah Jynx Women’s Football Team vs. Utah Blitz » 7 p.m. Saturday, Granite High School, 3305 S. 500 East. Season tickets are $20 and include Free hotdog and soda at each game. Children 2 and under are free. More information, www.utahjynx.net/.
Neon Trees » It’s official. Neon Trees are no longer a one-hit wonder, with the Utah band’s song "Everybody Talks" burning up the charts. The band’s new album "Picture Show," said frontman Tyler Glenn in a Tribune interview, is "selfish. ... It sounds like my favorite bands, but still us." The record indulged Glenn’s year-long obsession with Depeche Mode, with darker themes percolating under the still upbeat neo-New Wave anthems the band perfected on its break-through single "Animal." "There was a fearless attitude for this album," Glenn said. As a result, the band will be headlining a concert this summer with Penguin Prisons and J Jamz, the latter featuring members of Maroon 5 and Phantom Planet. But Glenn, who still calls a Provo apartment home, said success will never go to his band’s heads. "We weren’t made to be household names," he said. Too late. Opening the show will be The Devil Whale, The Blue Aces and Niko Vega.
When » Friday at 7 p.m.
Where » The Depot, 400 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City
Tickets » $20 at SmithsTix
Tony Summerhays » Whatever you do, don’t call him a D.J. "They call me a D.J. all the time. To a musician, it’s an insult. It takes a hell of a lot more time, and dues to be paid, than being a D.J." For four decades, Tony Summerhays has been Utah’s top one-man-band, and at the Murray Arts Centre he is hosting a free dance and show to celebrate 40 years in show business. In a Tribune interview with the institution, Summerhays said he has a repertoire of more than 500 songs, with his most requested song "In the Mood." The secret to his success and longevity is that Summerhays "treated my business like a business, instead of a hobby," he said. After that. "I chart my own course." If you miss this show, you can still check out Summerhays singing and playing the keyboard, guitar, trumpet and harmonica every Tuesday at the Murray Arts Centre, every Wednesday at the Golden Hours Center in Ogden, and on Thursdays at the Murray Heritage Senior Center.
When » Friday at 8:30 p.m.Next Page >
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