**** Excellent *** Good
** Fair * Poor
Reviewers: C.R., Carrie Rickey; S.R., Steven Rea; D.D., Dan DeLuca; T.D., Tirdad Derakhshani; D.H., David Hiltbrand; W.S., Inquirer wire services.
Alan Partridge See David Hiltbrand's review on Page 6.
Bears See review on Page 5.
Breathe In See Steven Rea's review on Page 5.
A Haunted House 2 Malcolm (Marlon Wayans) moves into a new home with his girlfriend and her children with scary results. Not Previewed
Heaven is for Real See review on Page 13.
Jodorowsky's Dune See Tirdad Derakhshani's review on Page 12.
Teenage See Steven Rea's review on Page 14.
13 Sins See Tirdad Derakhshani's review on Page 10.
Transcendence See Steven Rea's review on Page 4.
Under the Skin See Steven Rea's review on Page 4.
Bad Words Jason Bateman stars as a cynically contemptuous 40-year-old who insists on competing in a national children's spelling bee. Rohan Chand plays his precocious 10-year-old sidekick. Wicked fun until it elects to go sappy. 1 hr. 28 R (pervasive profanity, nudity, sex, crude humor) - D.H.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier The ninth installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe brings Steve "Cap" Rogers (Chris Evans, sporting Popeye biceps) to modern-day Washington, where the old-school "super soldier" struggles to come to terms with a preemptive, paranoid government mind-set. With Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, and Robert Redford in a sinister supporting role. 2 hrs. 16 PG-13 (action, violence, adult themes) - S.R.
Cuban Fury A former salsa dancer's dormant flame is reignited by a new woman in his life. 1 hr. 38 R (profanity, sexual references) - W.S.
Divergent Dystopian teen drama with Shailene Woodley as a Katniss Everdeen type, defying the 22d-century postapocalyptic social order, and Theo James as her mysterious, muscley warrior mentor. Adapted from the Veronica Roth novel, and directed, surefootedly, by Neil Burger (Limitless, The Illusionist). 2 hrs. 19 PG-13 (violence, adult themes) - S.R.
Dom Hemingway Jude Law, with muttonchop sideburns and a fierce swagger, chews up the scenery in this testosterone-fueled talkfest about a safecracker who's done his time in prison rather than rat out his boss. Twelve years later, Dom emerges from the slammer, looking for his reward. With Richard E. Grant and Demian Bichir. 1 hr. 33 R (violence, profanity, sex, nudity, drugs, adult themes) - S.R.
Draft Day Kevin Costner is the beleaguered general manager of the Cleveland Browns, trying to make the right decision on that fateful spring day when the NFL teams go culling through the college rosters. Ah, professional football: The thrill of victory. The agony of defeat. The teleconferencing. With Jennifer Garner and Denis Leary. 1 hr. 52 PG-13 (profanity, adult themes) - S.R.
Finding Vivian Maier A fascinating puzzle-piece mystery - and a revelatory portrait of an eccentic figure who worked as a nanny in Chicago from the '50s through the '90s - and who dragged her charges through the city, taking pictures. The heretofore unknown street photographs are nothing less than brilliant; the documentary about this curious figure is a find in more ways than one. 1 hr. 23 No MPAA rating (adult themes) - S.R.
Forces of Nature Get a close-up look at natural disasters in this Imax documentary.
God's Not Dead A young man's faith is put to the test by his philosophy professor. Shane Harper, Kevin Sorbo, and Willie Robertson star. Not Previewed
The Grand Budapest Hotel Wes Anderson's eighth, and most teeming film, is a Between the Wars comic caper set in a fictitious central European land where Ralph Fiennes is the concierge of an elegant alpine hostelry. When a wealthy guest dies and the will is read, a mad dash for money and a prized painting ensues. With Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, F. Murray Abraham, Saoirse Ronan, and newcomer Tony Revolori. Sublime. 1 hr. 40 R (violence, profanity, adult themes) - S.R.
Ice Age ** Diverting if undistinguished animated feature the moral of which is that predators and prey can be in the same posse if they have a common goal. A woolly mammoth with sinus trouble (voice by Ray Romano), an excitable sloth (John Leguizamo), and a shifty saber-tooth tiger (Denis Leary) navigate glacier and avalanche to return a lost baby to his migrating tribe. Shown in Imax. 1 hr. 21 PG (scenes of peril) - C.R.
Joe Nicolas Cage flexes his muscles (and flares his nostrils) in this bourbon-soaked character study of a soul-wracked Texas tree cutter and the "little drifter kid" he befriends. With Tye Sheridan, from the not disimilar Mud. 1 hr. 57 R (violence, profanity, sex, adult themes) - S.R.
Le Week-End Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan, both terrific, are a long-married couple taking a getaway in that most romantic of cities, Paris. A walking and talking (and running) snapshot of a relationship and its ups and downs. With Jeff Goldblum as an old friend whose invitation to dinner results in some soul-baring revelations. 1 hr. 33 R (profanity, adult themes) - S.R.
The Lunchbox Exquisite and exciting, exotic and inviting, this tale of a romance that begins with a misdelivered meal will put a smile on your face, a tear in your eye. Set in the teeming thrum of Mumbai, Ritesh Batran's first feature is full of whimsy and wisdom, and boasts a beautifully quiet and wholly realized performance from Slumdog Millionaire's Irrfan Khan. 1 hr. 44 PG (adult themes) - S.R.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman A time-travel movie, a father-and-son movie, a boy-meets-girl movie, a movie that doggedly celebrates the art of the pun. But most significant, this snappy adaptation of the '60s Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon segment is a movie about the smartest creature on Earth - who just happens to be a beagle - and his adopted human boy. 1 hr. 30 PG (cartoon violence) - S.R.
Muppets Most Wanted An evil frog is masquerading as Kermit while the real thing is hopping mad in a Russian gulag. The premise doesn't matter once the songs and gags start flowing. Ricky Gervais, Tina Fey, and Ty Burrell costar in this light entertainment. 1 hr. 52 PG (cartoonish action) - D.H.
Noah Darren Aronofsky's audacious, hallucinogenic reimagining of the Old Testament text is the movie equivalent of Christian death metal. It's an antediluvian Lord of the Rings, fist-pumping, ferocious, apocalyptic, and wet - very wet. With a brooding, burly Russell Crowe in the title role, and CG rock monsters on hand to help build the fabled ark. 2 hrs. 18 PG-13 (violence, adult themes) - S.R.
Oculus A woman tries to win her brother's freedom by proving the murder he was convicted of was committed by a supernatural force. 1 hr. 45 R (scenes of extreme bloody violence, profanity, sexual situations) - T.D.
The Raid 2: Berandal Combine every film made by Bruce Lee and muay thai master Tony Jaa and you might get an approximation of the sheer level of martial arts mayhem, gun-and-knife-play, car chases, explosions, murder, maiming, and general blood-letting in this extraordinary sequel. Indonesian actor, stuntman, and Silat fighter Iko Uwais returns as Jakarta cop Rama, the sole survivor of a police raid who goes undercover to destroy three gangs, including a group of dirty, deadly cops. R (strong bloody violence, sexuality, profanity) - T.D.
Ring of Fire This Imax documentary looks at the ring of volcanos in and around the Pacific Ocean.
Rio 2 Blue-feathered 3D computer-animated Spix's macaw Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) and his mate, Jewel (Anne Hathaway), return for another life-, love-, family- and environment-affirming adventure in this muddled, mediocre sequel to the $485 million-grossing hit from 2011. Joined by their motley crew of animal pals (Tracy Morgan, Jamie Foxx, will.i.am, and George Lopez) they trek deep into the Amazon rain forest in search of other members of their nearly extinct species. 1 hr. 41 G - T.D.
Son of God Condensed and reconfigured from the 10-hour History Channel mini-series The Bible, with Portuguese model-turned-screen player Diogo Morgado in the role of Jesus of Nazareth, inspiring his followers, performing miracles, and getting arrested, tried, and nailed to a cross. With a cast that can best be described as handsome, the film reduces the civilization-shaping events in the life and times of Jesus to a cheesy clip reel. 2 hrs. 18 PG-13 (violence, adult themes) - S.R.