Although he died in 1920 at the age of 32, self-taught Indian mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan (Sree nee vasa Raman Oojen) is considered a pioneer who made major contributions to the field. “The Man Who Knew Infinity” is an earnest and well-meaning biopic starring Dev Patel as the mathematical genius and Jeremy Irons as his British mentor, professor G. H. Hardy. The film, which is based on Hardy’s memories, is very respectable but also very conventional and formulaic. It lacks the dramatic spark that fueled other films about math geniuses, like “A Beautiful Mind” and “Good Will Hunting.” Still, it’s sincere and well produced even if all of the elements don’t quite add up.
“Rio, I Love You” is the third in a series of anthology movies, the first being “Paris, Je t’aime” and the second, “New York, I Love You.” Ten shorts from ten different noted international directors use the Marvelous city as the background for a very uneven mishmash of shorts that range from mildly intriguing to downright awful. None of the stories linger long enough to make much of an impact. The cast includes Harvey Keitel, John Turturro, Vincent Cassel, Emily Mortimer and Rodrigo Santoro. The end result plays like a promotional video for the Rio tourism board.
Also opening this week, “Money Monster” is a thriller about a cable television financial advisor who is taken hostage on live TV by a disgruntled viewer. Seems the host’s bad stock advice led the hostage taker to financial ruin. George Clooney, Julia Roberts and Jack O’Connell star, Jodi Foster directs. “Men & Chicken” is an unrated Danish comedy about some oddball half brothers and the unusual family discovery they make. Mads Mikkelsen stars. Kevin Bacon and Radha Mitchell star in “The Darkness,” a horror flick about a supernatural entity that haunts a family.