Friday, April 21, 2017

Arch Campbell's Weekend Movie Guide (4/21/17)

Charlie Hunnam stars in The Lost City of Z

From our friend, Arch Campbell...

Best New Opening The Lost City of Z - 4 Stars. Classic film epic based on the life of British explorer Percy Fawcett and his obsession with the Amazon. A grand experience with echoes of "Heart of Darkness" and "Lost Horizon."

La La Land - 4 Stars. Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling fall in love with each other & Los Angeles in an optimistic fantasy musical.

Lion - 4 Stars. Emotional story of a young boy who falls asleep on a train and is carried a thousand miles from home. Growing up, he feels the tug of home, and follows his instincts. One of the year's best.

Paterson - 4 Stars. The great Adam Driver plays a Paterson, New Jersey bus driver named Paterson who writes poetry.  Quirky, moving and great fun.

Get Out - 3½ Stars. Breakthrough satire/comedy/horror tale. Black kid visits white girlfriend's secluded home, and suspects something weird. Comic Jordan Peele directs with a sure hand.

Arch with Will Ferrell & Zach Galifianakis (r)

Their Finest - 3½ Stars. A young woman comes of age during the World War II London Blitz as a script writing working on morale boosting government films. A winning mix of oddballs and romance, amidst the daily threat of death.

The Lego Batman Movie - 3½ Stars. Animated comedy based on the Batman character. Hilarious from the first frame onward.

A United Kingdom - 3 Stars. David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike add dignity to the story of an interracial couple whose marriage caused an international fury.

I Am Not Your Negro - 3 Stars. James Baldwin’s haunting writings brought to life with the voice of Samuel Jackson.

Hidden Figures - 3 Stars. Inspiring story of three brilliant black women who faced prejudice and gender discrimination working in the space program in 1961. They kept John Glenn aloft.

Neruda - 3 Stars. Creative, artistic fantasy scenes from the life of Chilean poet/revolutionary/politician Pablo Neruda.

Gifted - 2½ Stars. Family custody drama over a math prodigy. The kid is cute; but the story's familiar. and I didn't buy the resolution.

Going in Style - 2½ Stars. Better-than-expected remake of 1979 George Burns comedy, with Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, and Alan Arkin as angry senior citizens, turned bank robbers.

The Zookeeper's Wife - 2 Stars. A Warsaw family uses their zoo to protect Jewish refugees during the Nazi reign. Falls short of better Holocaust stories.

The Promise - 1 Star. Clunky romance, set against the Armenian genocide of World War I. Bad script, poor acting, and way too long.

Visit Arch's website for his (unrivaled) take on movies. He remains the only other (we're not self-hating) critic, whose opinion we admire and respect.