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At the movies with Covo & Ayotte: “Sironia” and “The Words”

By Angela Covo and Dennis Ayotte, Jr. | 07 de septiembre de 2012

Film critics Angela Covo and Dennis Ayotte, Jr. bring you the truth about Hollywood’s current offerings every week. Look for their reviews online whenever you need to know more about the latest films. This week, Covo discusses the Texas Independent Film Network and this week’s presentation “Sironia” at the Bijou Sept. 12 at 7:30 p.m. and Ayotte covers “The Words” which opens nationwide Sept.7. Next week the two movie critics will review “Men of the Watch” and “Arbitrage.” Stay tuned for Ayotte’s exclusive interview with Michael Pena.

San Antonio.- Film critics Angela Covo and Dennis Ayotte, Jr. bring you the truth about Hollywood’s current offerings every week. Look for their reviews online whenever you need to know more about the latest films. This week, Covo discusses the Texas Independent Film Network and this week’s presentation “Sironia” at the Bijou Sept. 12 at 7:30 p.m. and Ayotte covers “The Words” which opens nationwide Sept.7. Next week the two movie critics will review “Men of the Watch” and “Arbitrage.” Stay tuned for Ayotte’s exclusive interview with Michael Pena.

By Angela Covo and Dennis Ayotte, Jr. 
angela.covo@gmail.com and dennisayottejr@gmail.com

Covo’s take: “Sironia” 2012 AFF Audience Award

SAFILM presents “SIRONIA,” another great indie uncovered by the Austin Film Festival for one night only on Wednesday, Sept. 12 at 7:30 p.m. at the Santikos Bijou. If you have a chance to go, you are in for a treat – just make sure you stay seated until after the credits roll.

This is the second film in a series brought to San Antonio thanks to SAFILM’s partnership with the Texas Independent Film Network (TIFN), the Austin Film Society (AFS) and our own premier arthouse for cinema, the Santikos Bijou. “SIRONIA” is an award-winner that garnered the 2012 Austin Film Festival Audience Award.

The film, shot in Waco and Los Angeles, was inspired by the music of singer-songwriter Wes Cunningham and features Wes Cunningham, Amy Acker (WB’s Angel), Tony Hale (Arrested Development), Robyn Lively (KARATE KID III) and Jeremy Sisto (Six Feet Under.)  

Directed by Brandon Dickerson, “SIRONIA” is the story of a talented musician who was chewed up and spit out by the Hollywood music machine. Frustrated by his broken career, the central characters, Thomas Fisher and his wife Molly impulsively pack up and move to small town Sironia, Texas to live a more authentic life and raise their first child near Molly's family. The change of scenery doesn’t have the desired effect – and the movie traces the couple’s struggle to find peace.

For more information about the other great indie flicks screening in San Antonio, visit www.texasifn.com or SAFILM.com for more information, tickets and directions. For more information about independent films playing in San Antonio, check the Santikos Bijou website regularly. 

Ayotte’s take: “The Words” 2 stars

I wanted “The Words” to be a great movie, but my hopes were crushed about 30 minutes into the film.

The film was poised for greatness, considering the stellar cast (Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana, Jeremy Irons, Dennis Quaid, Olivia Wilde) and what seemed to be a creative story. There is no doubt the trailers leading up to its release were overhyped and set the bar way too high.

The best thing about the film is the acting, but the pace is slow and sleepy and it never reaches a true climax. Moreover, the three stories intertwined throughout the film make sense but are dull at best. Overall, I think “The Words” lacks drama.

The central character, writer Rory Jansen (Bradley Cooper), gets off easy considering the path he chose in the film. The classic struggling writer chases his dream while still having to borrow money from his father.

He has a terrible job, but a gorgeous wife played by Zoe Saldana. An odd couple, but they make it work. Saldana doesn’t add much to the film but beauty; however she simply doesn’t have many scenes that allow her to stretch her acting legs.

The Old Man (Jeremy Irons) is by far the most intense and best part of the film. If The Old Man was a smidge crazier and had more scenes, the film could have taken a whole new direction. It’s like Irons is holding back and you want him to unleash the fury, but it never happens.

The film is loaded with promise and potential to reach the next level but never does. It’s frustrating, really.

Bottom line, this movie will leave you wanting more: more death, more drama, more sex and more Irons. Directors Brian Klugman and Lee Sternthal spent too much time layering when they should have been focused on building the actual layers.

I wouldn’t waste money or 96 minutes trying to figure out the flashbacks and who’s who at the movieplex this weekend. Just wait for it on DVD -- unless you’re a die-hard fan of uninspiring dramas.

“The Words” is rated PG-13, lasts about 96 minutes and opens nationwide Sept. 7.

 

 

 

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