Friday September 28, 2012

ARBITRAGE (R). Richard Gere stars in a Wall Street thriller about a deceitful hedge-fund manager negotiating a merger whose carefully built house of cards begins to collapse when his mistress is killed in an automobile accident which he survives. As unseemly as it may sound, Gere makes us root for the lying, scarmbling but extremely well-coiffed billionaire he plays. Part "Law & Order" morality play, part "Wall Street" with a dash of the more recent and topically pertinent "Margin Call," "Arbitrage" hums along, complicating its narrative without tying itself in knots. With Susan Sarandon, Brit Marling, Tim Roth. HHH (Phillips, Chicago Tribune -- 9/15). 1:40.

DREDD 3D (R). An executioner (Karl Urban) fights a drug epidemic in post-apocalyptic America.

END OF WATCH (R). Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena are cops minding the mean streets of Los Angeles.

FINDING NEMO 3D (G). Newly rereleased in 3D, the 9-year-old Pixar Disney marvel about a single-father clown fish searching for his son is a welcome sight on the big screen where you can feel the undiminished immensity of the ocean and the bulk of a whale in a way TV can't touch. The story itself and the vocal pierformances make the trip worthwhile even though the 3D isn't up to the film's otherwise sterling level. (Lovece, Newsday -- 9/18). 1:52.

HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 3D (PG).


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Adam Sandler provides the voice of Dracula in an animated monster mash.

HOUSE AT THE END OF THE STREET (PG-13). A dream house becomes a place of terror for a mom and her daughter (Elisabeth Shue and Jennifer Lawrence).

LOOPER (R). Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a hitman assigned to bump off his future self (Bruce Willis) in a time-travel thriller.

RESIDENT EVIL: RETRIBUTION 3D (R). Milla Jovovich resumes her battle against a plague of zombies in the fifth film of this dog-eared series. Whatever ambition the filmmakers displayed in the last film, "Resident Evil: Afterlife," they've taken this franchise back to square one and delivered a badly written, flatly acted, violent, nonsensical bloodbath. H (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 9/19). 1:31.

THE INTOUCHABLES (R). Popular French film about a Senegalese thief who somehow gets hired to be the personal attendant for an extremely wealthy quadriplegic. Not bad, sometimes corny, sometimes labored. HH (LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle -- 8/31). 1:52.

THE MASTER (R). A World War II Navy veteran (Joaquin Phoenix) falls under the spell of a charismatic cult leader (Philip Seymour Hoffman).

THE POSSESSION (R). A well-behaved tween is quickly possessed when she finds and opens a locked box with strange Hebrew inscriptions. The effects are chilling enough, the build-up has its moments. But the film lacks impact, those horrific sucker touches that take you by surprise and raise the hairs on the back of your neck. With Kyra Sedgwick, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Natasha Calis. H (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune Newspapers -- 9/1). 1:31.

SLEEPWALK WITH ME (NR). Comedy about a comedian/bartender with a serious sleep disorder whose stale small-club stand-up routine gains life when he begins talking about his own relationship woes with a long-term partner who sees them as a married couple, but doesn't want to confront her commitment-phobic partner.

THE WELL-DIGGER'S DAUGHTER (NR). In pre-World War II France, a father is torn between his sense of honor and his deep love for his saintly daughter.

WON'T BACK DOWN (PG). Two moms (Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis) fight to save their kids' inner-city school.

THE WORDS (PG-13). A writer (Bradley Cooper) must face the music after plagiarizing a novel. With Zoe Saldana, Dennis Quaid, Jeremy Irons, Olivia Wlde. HH (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 9/7). 1:31.

TROUBLE WITH THE CURVE (PG-13). An aging baseball scout (Clint Eastwood) enlists his daughter (Amy Adams) on his latest talent trip.