Inception

  • Directors: Christopher Nolan
  • Producers: Christopher Nolan, Emma Thomas
  • Writers: Christopher Nolan
  • Genres: Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Actors: Leonardo DiCaprio, Ken Watanabe, Joseph Gordon Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Ellen Page, Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, Tom Berenger, Michael Caine

A contemporary science fiction action thriller set within the architecture of the mind.

Whip It

  • Directors: Drew Barrymore
  • Producers: Barry Mendel, Drew Barrymore
  • Writers: Shauna Cross
  • Genres: Comedy, Drama
  • Actors: Ellen Page, Marcia Gay Harden, Kristen Wiig, Drew Barrymore, Juliette Lewis, Jimmy Fallon, Daniel Stern

Bliss Cavendar (Ellen Page) is a misfit in her small town, Bodeen, in Texas and has no idea where her life is going. She allows her mother to push her into winning beauty pageant after beauty pageant, despite having no interest in it herself. She and her friend Pash (Alia Shawkat) dream of escaping their small town, with Pash planning to go to an Ivy League School in a big city and Bliss hoping to find something that will help her figure out where she belongs. During a shopping trip to Austin she finds it — roller derby. She and Pash secretly go to the Roller Derby event in Austin under the pretense of going to a football game. Bliss only wishes to tell the Hurl Scouts that they are “her new heroes” and is suddenly thrown into the idea of being in Roller Derby herself when Maggie Mayhem (Kristen Wiig) replies “Well, put some skates on and be your own hero”. She practices roller skating until she’s ready for trials. She’s able to go to the trials in Austin under the premise of taking SAT preparation classes and ends up impressing Razor, the coach, landing herself a place in the team. After realising she needs to be ruthless in Roller Derby she realises she also needs to take charge in other aspects of her life and her parents and old friends are eventually able to accept that Roller Derby is where she belongs, even if only for “the moment”. [2]

X Men The Last Stand

  • Directors: Brett Ratner
  • Producers: Lauren Shuler Donner, Ralph Winter, Avi Arad
  • Writers: Screenplay, Simon Kinberg, Zak Penn, Comic Book, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby
  • Genres: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Actors: Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin, Kelsey Grammer, James Marsden, Rebecca Romijn, Shawn Ashmore, Aaron Stanford, Vinnie Jones, Ellen Page, Ben Foster

A pharmaceutical company called Worthington Labs announces that it has developed an inoculation to permanently suppress the X-gene that gives mutants their powers, offering the so-called “cure” to any mutant who wants it; the cure is derived from a mutant boy named Jimmy. While some mutants are interested in the cure, including the X-Men’s Rogue, many others are horrified by the announcement. In response to the news, the X-Men’s adversary Magneto begins to raise an army, warning his followers that, like his experiences in the Holocaust, the cure will be forcefully used to exterminate the mutant race.

Cyclops, still heartbroken about the loss of Jean Grey, returns to Alkali Lake, where Jean sacrificed herself to save the X-Men. He hears her voice and begs for it to stop, finally taking off his sunglasses and his eye beam shoots through the water. Jean then appears out of the water to Cyclops, and as the two kiss, Jean changes and appears to kill Cyclops. Sensing trouble, Professor Charles Xavier sends Wolverine and Storm to investigate. When they arrive, the two X-Men encounter telekinetically floating rocks, Cyclops’ glasses, and an unconscious Jean. Meanwhile Magneto ambushes a military transport and frees Juggernaut, Mystique and Multiple Man, during which Mystique blocks a shot of the mutant cure aimed at Magneto, only to be left behind because she is not “one of them” anymore.

Following the closing credits, Dr. Moira MacTaggert checks on a comatose patient who greets her with Xavier’s voice, implying that he has transferred his mind into this new body.

Juno

  • Directors: Jason Reitman
  • Producers: John Malkovich, Lianne Halfon, Mason Novick, Russell Smith
  • Writers: Diablo Cody
  • Genres: Comedy, Drama
  • Actors: Ellen Page, Michael Cera, Jennifer Garner, Jason Bateman, Allison Janney, J K Simmons, Olivia Thirlby

Sixteen-year-old Minnesotan high-schooler Juno MacGuff (Ellen Page) discovers she is pregnant with a child fathered by her friend and longtime admirer, Paulie Bleeker (Michael Cera). While at first she intends to have an abortion, she changes her mind and decides to make a plan for the child’s adoption. With the help of her friend Leah (Olivia Thirlby), Juno searches the ads in the Pennysaver and finds a couple she feels will provide a suitable home. Along with her father, Mac (J. K. Simmons), Juno meets the couple, Mark and Vanessa Loring (Jason Bateman and Jennifer Garner), in their expensive home and expresses a desire for a closed adoption.

Vanessa is extremely anxious around Juno and their initial interactions are uneasy. However, Juno and Leah happen to see Vanessa in a shopping mall being completely at ease with a child, and Juno encourages Vanessa to talk to her baby in the womb, where it obligingly kicks for her. On the other hand, Juno more easily forms a friendship with Mark, with whom she shares tastes in punk rock and horror films. Mark, who has set aside his rock band youth (now confined to memorabilia displayed in the one room of the house allowed him by Vanessa), works at home composing commercial jingles. Juno hangs out with Mark a few times, ignoring a warning from her stepmother Bren (Allison Janney) that she should not spend time alone with a married man.

After a heartfelt discussion with Mac, Juno accepts that she loves Paulie. Juno then tells Paulie that she loves him, and Paulie’s actions make it clear that her feelings are reciprocated. At his track meet, when Paulie notices Juno is not in the stands and realizes she must be in labor, he rushes to the hospital to be with her (she had not told him because she did not want him to miss the meet). He arrives to find Juno has given birth to their son, and comforts Juno as she cries. Vanessa comes to the hospital where she joyfully claims the newborn boy as a single adoptive mother. On the wall in the baby’s new nursery, Vanessa has framed Juno’s note—addressed only to her—which reads “Vanessa: If you’re still in, I’m still in. —Juno.” The film ends in the summertime with Juno and Paulie playing guitar and singing together, followed by a kiss.