Ratings by the Motion Picture Association of America are: (G) for general audiences; (PG) parental guidance urged because of material possibly unsuitable for children; (PG-13) parents are strongly cautioned to give guidance for attendance of children younger than 13; (R) restricted, younger than 17 admitted only with parent or adult guardian; (NC-17) no one 17 and younger admitted.
(Critics’ Choices capsule reviews are by Kenneth Turan (K.Tu.), Justin Chang (J.C.) and other reviewers. Openings compiled by Kevin Crust.)
OPENING IN HOLLYWOOD THIS WEEK
“Blame” — Jealousy over the casting of the lead in a play rocks a suburban high school. With Quinn Shephard, Nadia Alexander, Chris Messina. Written and directed by Shephard.
“Day of the Dead: Bloodline” — Zombies run amok as military personnel and survivalists search for a remedy in an underground bunker. With Sophie Skelton, Jonathan Schaech. Written by Mark Tonderai, Lars Jacobson, based on characters created by George A. Romero. Directed by Hector Hernandez Vicens, Pearry Reginald Teo.
“Devil’s Gate” — Horror/sci-fi with Milo Ventimiglia, Bridget Regan, Amanda Schull, Jonathan Frakes. Written by Clay Staub and Peter Aperlo. Directed by Staub.
“Goldbuster” — Comedy starring and directed by Sandra Ng.
“Insidious: The Last Key” — A parapsychologist discovers a horrific threat inside her own home. With Lin Shaye, Angus Sampson, Leigh Whannell. Written by Whannell. Directed by Adam Robitel.
“Madtown” — Thriller with Milo Ventimiglia, John Billingsley, Rachel Melvin. Written and directed by Charles Moore.
“Sheikh Jackson” — Drama with Ahmed El Feshawy, Ahmed Malek, Maged El-Kedwany, Basma. Written by Amr Salama, Omar Khaled. Directed by Salama.
“Stratton” — Action thriller with Dominic Cooper. Written by Dustin Falconer and Warren Davis II. Directed by Simon West.
“Surge of Power: Revenge of the Sequel” — Superhero spoof with John Venturuni, Eric Roberts. Directed by Antonio Lexerot.
“Call Me By Your Name” — Timothee Chalamet and Armie Hammer give superb performances as two young men falling in love in the northern Italian countryside in this rapturously beautiful collaboration between director Luca Guadagnino and screenwriter James Ivory. (J.C.) R.
“The Disaster Artist” — James Franco’s shrewd, affectionate and frequently hilarious comedy re-creates and deconstructs the making of Tommy Wiseau’s cult landmark “The Room,” with Franco giving a fully committed, even haunted performance as Wiseau. (J.C.) R
“The Florida Project” — Absorbing us in the day-to-day rhythms of life at a dumpy Florida motel complex, home to a wildly spirited 6-year-old girl named Moonee (the startling Brooklynn Prince), Sean Baker (“Tangerine”) goes to a place few of us know and emerges with a masterpiece of empathy and imagination. (J.C.) R.
“Happy End” — Another guilty-as-sin bourgeois family is at the heart of Austrian writer-director Michael Haneke’s diabolically playful new movie, which borrows narrative and thematic elements from his earlier films (“Cache,” “Amour”) and pulls them in a thoughtful, blisteringly funny new direction. (J.C.) R.
“Hostiles” — Written and directed by Scott Cooper and powered by a dynamic trio of interwoven performances by Christian Bale, Wes Studi and Rosamund Pike, this latest example of the Western revival grabs you by the throat and holds on for the duration. (K.Tu.) R.
“Lady Bird” — As warm as it is smart, and it is very smart, this portrait of a high school senior year marks actor-screenwriter Greta Gerwig’s superb debut as a solo director and yet another astonishing performance by star Saoirse Ronan. (K.Tu.) R.
“Mudbound” — Carey Mulligan, Jason Mitchell, Mary J. Blige and Rob Morgan are part of a superb ensemble in writer-director Dee Rees’ sweeping epic of World War II-era Mississippi, the rare film that grants its white and black characters the same moral and dramatic weight. (J.C.) R.
“1945” — A lean, unadorned parable about guilt and the nature and consequences of evil. A quietly furious Hungarian film that puts a particular time and place under a microscope, revealing hidden fault lines and differences that have been ineffectively papered over. (K.Tu.) NR.
“The Post” — Director Steven Spielberg and stars Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks combine for a thriller cum civics lesson showing the value of newspapers hanging together and holding government accountable for deception. (K.Tu.) PG-13.
“The Shape of Water” — Magical, thrilling and romantic to the core, a sensual and fantastical “Beauty and the Beast” tale with moral overtones, Guillermo del Toro’s film plays by all the rules and none of them, going its own way with fierce abandon. (K.Tu.) R.
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” — Building and improving on “The Force Awakens,” writer-director Rian Johnson’s grand space opera is the first flat-out terrific “Star Wars” movie since “The Empire Strikes Back,” full of dramatic echoes of George Lucas’ original trilogy but also rich in surprise and imagination. (J.C.) PG-13.
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” — Uncommon writer-director Martin McDonagh and a splendid cast top-lined by Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson and Sam Rockwell present a savage film, even a dangerous one, the blackest take-no-prisoners farce in quite some time. (K.Tu.) R.
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