Director Jon Favreau and writer Justin Theroux deserve credit for trying to infuse the sequel to 2008's 'Iron Man' with equal parts pleasure, wit, intelligence, silliness, self-awareness and steely action-movie grit. In other words, Favreau tries to make it a worthwhile vehicle for the acting ability of his star, Robert Downey Jr., succeeding enough to make this enjoyable by the standards of summer-movie comic-book adaptations/sequels. Grade: B-.
If ever there was need for an example of the whole not adding up to the sum of its parts, then let 'Couples Retreat' hereby stand as Exhibit A. The movie assembles four couples in relationships in various stages of duress and quickly trots them off to an island paradise where all of their problems will be solved — not before they go out of their ways to make things much worse, of course. Grade: D.
'G-Force' strains the Jerry Bruckheimer brand model past the breaking point by creating a kid's film with no real kids, using the animals as stand-ins, I suppose, but there's nothing particularly kid-friendly about them. Nor, to be brutally honest, is there anything engaging about them on a pop-cultural level for adults. Grade: D.