Friday Flicks: Is Fast Five Worthy of a High Five?

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Vin Diesel attends a photocall for "Fast & Furious 5"

Grab some popcorn! NewsFeed’s Glen Levy brings you the movies you should check out (or avoid) this weekend.

Fast Five

Tagline: Summer Begins April 29

Also known as The Fast and Furious 5, NewsFeed likes to think of it more as There Will Be Cars. And in this, the fifth installment of the franchise, there will also be a reuniting of some of the previous players (Vin Diesel, Paul Walker) with the new addition of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson to keep the gears moving (one word about Dwayne and Diesel: Bromance!).

And while the cars and (much of) the cast remains the same, Fast Five is a reboot of sorts in regard to moving the action to Rio de Janeiro. Revenge is the inevitable name of the game as a crime boss (Joaquim de Almeida) has not only exploited slum-dwellers but – say it ain’t so! – framed Vin and his buddies for murder. The stunts are spectacular, the running time ridiculous but it just might be the best of the lot (which we’re aware is not saying much). And by the time the film makers tell you not to try this at home, you won’t know whether to laugh or cry.

(More on See TIME’s review of Fast Five)

Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil

Tagline: Not All Fairy Tales Go By The Book.

You almost have to feel sorry for a movie that includes the word ‘Hoodwinked’ in the title, because if it doesn’t come off as something close to Casablanca crossed with Citizen Kane, headline writers everywhere will surely sharpen their pencils and let rip.

And the Weinstein Company, who are behind Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil (the sequel to the 2005 original) might want to duck because the notices are in and they ain’t pretty. Despite assembling a host of famous voices (Hayden Panettiere, Glenn Close, Patrick Warburton, Joan Cusack to name but a few), this re-imagining of Little Red Riding Hood (which is definitely looking to Shrek for inspiration), all the while in 3-D, has elicited some evil words indeed.

“One of the most obnoxious and least necessary animated films of the century thus far,” wrote the Hollywood Reporter (and that wasn’t even the conclusion but the opening salvo), “a tolerance-testing tale that puts the grim in Grimm,” said Time Out New York and “half-assed kiddie eyeball-glazer,” was the summation of The Village Voice. The Weinsteins are not expected to be on the campaign trail come Oscar time for this animated aberration.

(More on See pictures of the greatest ever animated movies)

Cave of Forgotten Dreams

Tagline: Mankind’s Lost Masterpiece … In 3D.

It’s pretty much impossible to get into the Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc Cave in France, which holds some of the earliest ever cave paintings. But if anyone was going to pull it off, it was surely the German documentary maker, Werner Herzog, who doesn’t know how to take no for an answer. And sure enough, Cave of Forgotten Dreams is the story of Herzog and his minimal crew gaining permission from the French government and access to the breathtaking setting (they were painted over a 10,000-year period starting 35,000 years ago), all in sumptuous 3-D, which is perhaps the greatest use of the dubious medium yet.

Save for the experts who Herzog speaks to (watch for the perfume specialist in particular), humans are rarely seen with the pictures doing most of the talking. But when you talk about Herzog, you have to describe his distinctive voice: never have those vocal chords been better served than when he serves up the likes of “the beginnings of the modern human soul,” or “time and space lose their meaning.”  In short, this is art about art.

(More on See a Q&A with Herzog)

NewsFeed’s Flicks Pick: Cave of Forgotten Dreams: Once seen, never forgotten.