By: Tom DotyTimes Columnist
February 14, 2013
“The Sessions” — A successful writer, who has been disabled since birth, engages the services of a sex surrogate in this exceptional drama. This is a true story that avoids sensationalizing its plot and proceeds with realism, as we observe this man seeking counsel on this decision from his priest and a caregiver before embarking on his journey. The performances make this work . John Hawkes (“Winter’s Bone”) may have been robbed by the Oscars, but you will love him here. Helen Hunt is quite good as the woman he hires, and William H. Macy is also sturdy as the priest who encourages this exploration.
“Man with the Iron Fists” — If you just want escapist entertainment, then you’ll enjoy this salute to the kung fu flicks of the 1970s. Rapper RZA (of Wu Tang Clan) created this love letter to the Shaw Brothers Studios and it has all the gimmicks (cool weapons, animal-themed fighting groups and stunt casting) one needs for a great chop-sockey effort.
“Robot and Frank” — A retired thief is facing old age, retirement and the onset of memory loss in this sensitive drama. The story gets a sci-fi wrinkle with the addition of a robot companion that is gifted to our main character. This actually works, thanks to the creative casting of Frank Langella. He is wonderful here and manages some fine moments acting opposite a small tin machine.
“Silent Hill: Revelation” — A belated sequel to the horror flick based on the popular video game. Here, the young girl who was menaced by the spirit world is back and about to turn 18, when the supernatural nasties return for her. It all works thanks to great use of 3D. You get lots of bizarre ghosts with nightmarish visages popping out when you least expect them. Lots of fun and darn unsettling at times. Try not to be nursing a soft drink when you watch this, or you just might wind up wearing it.