Nerd fodder of very different kinds come to Wasatch Front discount theaters this week. ---
Director Zack Snyder's Sucker Punch feels like something wired directly into a teenage geek-brain: Hot babes in schoolgirl outfits fighting mechanized monsters with ninja swords. But the first "original" script from the director of 300 and Watchmen, according to our contributor Andrew Wright -- a fantasy about asylum inmates using the power of their imaginations to break free -- delivers kinetic thrills without any logic or dramatic tension.
A different generation of nerds may be the target audience for Paul, the comedy from Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (Shaun of the Dead) about a pair of British tourists who help an alien (voiced by Seth Rogen) escape from U.S. military captivity. While there's some funny stuff here, the film mostly appears to be a download of Pegg and Frost's 1980s pop-culture nostalgia, with quips from and references to everything from Aliens to E.T. to Back to the Future.
For the younger proto-nerd, there's Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules, the second film adaptation from Jeff Kinney's popular book series. Our Eric D. Snider described it as an "unambitious comedy that seeks easy laughs through contrived sitcom devices."