So the problems of the Internet gambling thriller Runner Runner are many and manifest. A thrill-free thriller with no urgency, scanty wit and limited sex appeal, it plays like just a paycheck for A-list actors who should know better. Timberlake is Richie Furst, a Wall Street dropout whom we meet as he tries to hustle his way to a graduate degree at Princeton. But the online gambling hes using to finance college fails him, and a little numbers crunching tells him hes been cheated. Somehow, he scrapes together the cash and the moxie to go to Costa Rica and confront the online gaming kingpin, Ivan Block (Affleck). Block likes that moxie and next thing you know, Richies his right hand man, crunching numbers, recruiting affiliates to their Internet empire and making eyes at the boss babe (Gemma Arterton). He has everything you ever thought you wanted, when you were 13. And then a rules-bending F.B.I. agent (Anthony Mackie, funny) kidnaps him and we wonder whose loyalty Richie will honor Ivans, the feds or his own. Runner Runner is the sort of movie where the hero narrates his tale so thoroughly that theres little mystery as to whats coming. Its a static picture about a sexy world that robs that world of sex and pizazz with student film staging and camera blocking. Actors stalk into a shot, hit their marks, make eye contact and recite (weak) lines. (You forgot the eternal truth. The house always wins.) A couple of scenes in this choppy, glumly edited picture work, but they involve real gambling, not the online kind which is uncinematic. Theres barely enough gambling slang to dress up the script. Timberlakes best moments come in scenes with Richies apple-doesnt-fall-far-from-the-tree dad (John Heard), who is the very picture of addiction.
At the Movies: Genre pictures have no borders
It was not always easy to identify the song or artist though. Sometimes, song and artist were listed in the ending credits of a movie, but that was not always the case. If you are in the same spot, you may know that there are a couple of options that you have to identify music from TV shows or movies. You can search for the name of the movie or TV show and add music in the end, or try to search for lyrics that you were able to identify, or, you may record the music if possible and use a service such as Midomi or Shazam to identify it. Or, you could use a specialized service such as Tunefind for this as it maintains a database of TV shows and movies, and the songs used in them. Identify music from movies or TV shows Tunefind is a free Internet-based service that you can use to identify music that you heard while watching TV shows or movies. All you have to do is enter the name of the show or movie in the search form on the site and wait for the results to be populated. TV shows are listed by season and then by episode, so that you need to know those information to find the song you are looking for. While it is theoretically possible to browse all episodes and seasons one after the other, it may take a while depending on the TV show. Good news is that you do not need to use another site to listen to music samples. Each song used by a TV show or movie is linked as a preview right on Tunefind so that you can preview them in rapid succession to find the one you are looking for. The service lists when a song was used using a description and time, so that you can speed up the process if you know when it was used in the film or TV show. The service is quite up to date with the listings so that you will find the latest episodes of your TV show listed here as soon as they have aired. If you sign up on the site, using Facebook or a direct sign up, you can ask questions about songs. This can be useful if a song is not mentioned yet under the songs listing, or if you want to find out more about it.
MOVIES: ‘Runner Runner’ a gambling thriller on the road to nowhere
Genre movies know no boundaries. Thats why Hollywood action pictures play so well internationally often better than in the United States. And its why movies like Drug War have a shot at connecting with American audiences. Drug War, which opens Friday at the Ross Media Arts Center, is a Chinese police procedural about a dogged cop and a methamphetamine maker who turns informant to avoid the death penalty for making meth. While its got its share of surprises, Drug War follows the cop picture formula closely enough to connect with those who like that kind of film, and its bracing, tightly choreographed shootouts are every bit as good, if grittier than their big studio counterparts. In most cases, American audiences are loath to go to subtitled movies. But, over the years, exceptions have been made for martial arts pictures and action movies. Drug War fits perfectly into the last genre — and its the best such import since 2002s Infernal Affairs, the Hong Kong picture that inspired Martin Scorseses The Departed. Oscar contenders coming to Lincoln If youre among those who like to see all the Oscar nominees on the big screen (always a good idea), you need to head to theaters over the next three weeks as two pictures likely to get nominations open in Lincoln Friday. Sandra Bullock, who took home a best actress Academy Award for her work in The Blind Side, is getting rave reviews for her performance as an astronaut floating in space and fearing death in Gravity. Shes almost a sure thing for a nomination. Director Alfonso Cuaron has been Oscar-nominated three times — for writing and editing. He could easily get a fourth or fifth nominations for writing and directing Gravity and the films impressive 3-D and cinematography could get Academy consideration as well. Enough Said, which begins a three-week run at the Ross Media Arts Center Friday, is building Oscar momentum for its stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus and, especially, the late James Gandolfini. The romantic comedy about a pair of middle-aged divorcees is a sure bet to get a Golden Globe nomination in its comedy category.