ABOUT LAST NIGHT (R). Kevin Hart, Michael Ealy, Regina Hall, Joy Bryant, Christopher McDonald and Paula Patton costar in this reimagining of the 1986 romantic comedy -- based on a play by David Mamet -- that starred Rob Lowe, Demi Moore, James Belushi and Elizabeth Perkins about two couples and their journey from the bar to the bedroom to the real world.
AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY (R). A family reunion turns into a convergence of recriminations and spite in this film adaptation of Tracy Letts’ Pulitzer Prize-winning play. There’s a pervasive cruelty, a condescension toward common folk like the Weston family that’s frequently off-putting even as we’re laughing. With Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, Benedict Cumberbatch, Juliette Lewis, Chris Cooper, Abigail Breslin, Dermot Mulroney, Juliette Nicholson, Sam Shepard. HH1/2 (Persall, Tampa Bay Times -- 1/18). 1:59.
ENDLESS LOVE (PG-13). Two teens from radically different backgrounds fall in love against the sharp disapproval of both their parents. With Gabriella Wilde, Alex Pettyfer, Bruce Greenwood, Robert Patrick.
FROZEN (PG). There’s wit and whimsy in this 53rd Disney animated feature -- a distant cousin of Hans Christian Anderson’s "The Snow Queen" -- about a young girl cursed with an X-Men-like ability to freeze things and her baby sister’s determined effort to lift the curse. With the voices of Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell, Josh Gad. HH (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 11/27). 1:42.
HER (R). A melancholy romance about a man who falls in love with a sentient, learning and loving operating system. Director Spike Jonze’s handling of his jump-off premise defies anything movies train viewers to expect from such ripe-for-folly conceits. It’s a small cinematic miracle that in a film in which so may things can go wrong, nothing does. A next-generation love story that moves in surprising ways. With Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson, Rooney Mara, Amy Adams. HHH (Persall, Tampa Bay Times -- 1/11). 2:05.
PHILOMENA (PG-13). A disgraced journalist in search of a human interest story teams up with an old, ill-educated Irish woman who sets off to America in search of the out-of-wedlock child she was forced to give up 50 years earlier by the Irish Catholic Church. Judi Dench gives a performance of spunk and sparkle, bringing to life a twinkly, grandmotherly working-class woman who isn’t above enjoying a drink or a naughty word. Director Stephen Frears never lets the story lapse into sentiment and Steve Coogan -- who co-wrote the screenplay -- is pitch-perfect as the journalist who follows a 50-year-old trail to America. HHH (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 11/27). 1:38.
RIDE ALONG (R). Kevin Hart plays a pesky aspiring police officer seeking the approval of his girlfriend’s brother -- a no-nonsense veteran cop played by Ice Cube. A dull buddy cop movie engineered as a vehicle for the mini-motor mouth Hart and the perma-sneering Ice Cube. H1/2 (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 1/22). 1:40.
ROBOCOP (PG-13). Paul Verhoeven’s 1987 sci-fi action film gets a remake, this time starring Joel Kinnaman, a Swedish actor with American swagger, as the techno-Frankenstein created to tame Detroit’s rampant crime. This "RoboCop" has updated the original’s dystopia with some clever ideas and better acting, while at the same time sanitizing any satire with video-game polish and sequel baiting. With Michael Keaton, Gary Oldman, Jennifer Ehle, Abbie Cornish. HH1/2 (Coyle, Associated Press -- 2/13). 1:48.
THAT AWKWARD MOMENT (R). Zac Efron, Miles Teller ("The Spectacular Now") and Michael B. Jordan ("Fruitvale Station") play three New York pals who vow, when the doctor of the trio (played by Jordan) is dumped by his wife, to stay single and enjoy the mingling. Together, they will build "a roster" of booty calls. And the moment a woman starts "the talk" with "So," they’ll bail. That’s the plan -- which all of them ignore. A chatty romantic comedy in the modern mode -- rude, crude and nude -- with some funny writerly riffs on relationships and how to avoid them. With Imogen Poots, Mackenzie Davis, Jessica Lucas. HH (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 2/1). 1:34.
THE INVISIBLE WOMAN (R). The story of Charles Dickens and the younger woman who became his secret lover until his death.
THE LEGO MOVIE (PG). In this animated film, an ordinary Lego figure is mistaken for the person meant to save the world and drafted into a quest to stop an evil tyrant. "The Lego Movie" doesn’t simply put imagination into practice but celebrates it, makes it integral, in a late development so uncharacteristic for an animated film that it’s a wonder unto itself. With the voices of Chris Pratt, Will Ferrell, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett. HHH (Pesrall, Tampa Bay Times -- 2/10). 1:30.
THE MONUMENTS MEN (PG-13). A fact-based drama about an unlikely World War II platoon tasked by FDR with going to Germany to save rare antiques, art and architecture from theft and destruction by the Nazis. A genial disappointment about the preciousness of art amid the destructive horrors of war. With George Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, John Goodman, Cate Blanchett. HH (Phillips, Chicago Tribune -- 2/8). 1:59.
THE NUT JOB (PG). A surprisingly simple, funny and often cute animated slapstick comedy about a squirrel planning a nut heist so that he’ll have enough food to last through winter. With the voices of Will Arnett, Brendan Fraser, Liam Neeson, Katherine Heigl. HH (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 1/21). 1:25.
THE PAST (PG-13). An Iranian man who deserted his French wife and two children to return to his homeland confronts a new reality when, upon her request for a divorce, he returns to discover that she has started a relationship with another man.
VAMPIRE ACADEMY (PG-13). A self-aware horror / action-comedy, first in a possible franchise. Sexy, PG-13 sassy, flip and funnier than it has a right to be, it still feels slapdash and under-budgeted. HH (Moore, McClatchy-Tribune News Service -- 2/10). 1:38.
WINTER’S TALE (PG-13). A master thief marked for death by a demonic former mentor battles the forces of time to save the lovely occupant of a Central Park mansion who is dying of consumption. Colin Farrell, Jessica Brown Findlay, Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, William Hurt. Review, this page.
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