Tony Toscano’s movie reviews: Disney’s ‘Moana’ and Brad Pitt’s ‘Allied’

SALT LAKE CITY, November 24, 2016 (Gephardt Daily) — 2 major releases open in theaters today, Disney Animation’s “Moana” and Paramount Pictures’ “Allied,” starring Brad Pitt.

Box Office Mojo is predicting the new animated film will make a bit splash at the ticket booth this weekend, estimating the film will bring in $62 million dollars for its debut weekend. The estimate puts the family film above “Doctor Strange,” which is predicted to earn $41.0 million dollars.

Opening in 3rd place is “Allied,” starring Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard. The World War II drama is expected to open with a box office take of $18.0 million dollars.

Here’s the 3-day weekend totals, according to Box Office Mojo.

Moana – $62.0 Million Dollars
Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them – $41.0 Million Dollars
Allied – $18 Million Dollars
Trolls – $13.8 Million Dollars
Doctor Strange – $13.1 Million Dollars
Bad Santa 2 – $9.2 Million Dollars
Arrival – $7.9 Million Dollars
Hacksaw Ridge – $4.9 Million Dollars
Almost Christmas – $4.8 Million Dollars
The Edge of Seventeen – $3.4 Million Dollars

The Reviews:

Starring Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard
Rated R

In 1942, an intelligence officer in North Africa encounters a female French Resistance fighter on a deadly mission behind enemy lines. When they reunite in London, their relationship is tested by the pressures of war.

“Allied” offers strong performances from both of its leads. Brad Pitt’s character, Max, is reserved and introverted as he moves through the film’s story. It is only when he gets involved with his espionage counterpart, Marianne, played by Marion Cotillard, that he lets his walls down.

Cotillard’s Marianne is the heart and soul of this romance / thriller, as she is extroverted and joyful, playing almost an opposite to Pitt’s Max.

The story is intricately woven and well directed, but the pace is somewhat slower than it needed to be. In the end, this well-written thriller, although slow to boil, has an unmistakable charm to it.

“Allied” gets a B and is rated R.

Starring the vocal talents of: Dwayne Johnson and Alui’i Cravlho
Rated PG

Moana is the chief’s daughter, an adventurous teenager who sets sail on a daring mission to save her people by returning a stolen gem to appease an angry god. To do this, Moana needs the help of a once-mighty demigod named Maui to guide her and teach her to become a master wayfinder, a talent her people lost over time.

Together they sail across the vast ocean to return a priceless artifact. Along the way the pair encounter many obstacles and ask the question “What is my place in the world?”

“Moana” is a joyfully exuberant buddy picture, in which the heroes learn more about themselves and the power of friendship and loyalty. Added to that is a rich score, written by “Hamilton” composer Lin-Manuel Miranda, influenced by South Pacific rhythms.

“Moana” gets an A and is rated PG.


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