Scott Marks 12:30 p.m., July 26
The Lure (Córki dancingu)
- Rated NR | 1 hour, 32 minutes
- View trailer
The promise of a Polish musical adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s tenebrous fairy tale The Little Mermaid, set against the backdrop of a happening ‘80s strip club, proved too good to be true. Director Agnieszka Smoczynska acknowledges a side of the author that Disney dare not touch — “Mommy, how does Ariel make a baby?” — but goes too far in the opposite direction by turning a pair of myrgyrls — Golden (Michalina Olszańska) and Silver (Marta Mazurek) — into sure-fire telekinetic flesh-eating zombies. As for the music, what is the point of asking actors who can’t carry a tune to talk-sing lyrics that fail to advance the plot (and that audiences will never remember)? Smoczynska apparently finds it easier to exploit than explore, and derails her psychological thriller in favor of camping things up. A nod to politically correct species reassignment surgery livens the third act, but the film eventually sinks under the weight of its own silly excess. 2015.