OPENING THIS WEEK
Directed by Hans Petter Molland; stars Liam Neeson, Emmy Rossum, Laura Dern
A snowplow driver goes on a mission of revenge after a family member dies mysteriously.
Vanity Fair’s Richard Lawson calls it “an engrossing kind of misfire, far more intriguing for its experiments in style than for being yet another movie about a taciturn Neeson taking names.” Wall Street Journal’s Joe Morgenstern is unimpressed: “The stupidity lacks smarts in the script department.”
Happy Death Day 2U
Directed by Christopher B. Landon; stars Jessica Rothe, Israel Broussard, Ruby Modine
College student is trapped again in a cycle of life and death when she wakes up in a twisted reality.
Broussard recently told girlfriend.com, “Once we wrapped the first one, we really had no idea how they would make a sequel.” But he was “totally blown away” when he read the script.
Directed by Steven Knight; stars Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Diane Lane
A boat captain’s ex-wife surfaces to ask his help in dealing with an abusive spouse.
Rolling Stone’s Peter Travers calls it “an infuriating mess … has already earned a place among the year’s worst movies.” The Atlantic’s David Sims, however, posits, “‘Serenity’ may not make it onto many critics’ top 10 lists come the end of 2019. But it’s certain to be one of the more unforgettable viewing experiences of the year.”
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
Directed by Mike Mitchell; voiced by Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett
Denizens of the toy world face the threat of alien invaders in this sequel to the 2014 movie.
Christy Lemire of RogerEbert.com says, “While it’s a lot of fun, it isn’t as consistently clever or thrilling as its predecessor.” Detroit News’ Adam Graham did not feel as entertained: “‘Lego 2’ is like stepping on a Lego.”
Isn’t It Romantic?
Directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson; stars Rebel Wilson, Priyanka Chopra, Liam Hemsworth, Adam DeVine
Cynical about love, an architect is knocked unconscious and wakes up in an alternate world.
On doing intimate scenes with Hemsworth, Wilson told AOL, “Liam is such a gentleman and obviously, I respect Miley (Cyrus).”
How to Be a Latin Lover
Directed by Ken Marino; stars Salma Hayek, Rob Lowe, Eugenio Derbez
A man is dumped by his wealthy lover and hatches a scheme to seduce a rich widow.
Screen Zealots’ Louisa Moore finds it “an amusing diversion that’s much better than it should be.”
Directed by Antoinette Jadaone; stars Enrique Gil, Liza Soberano
College sweethearts meet again, years after their breakup, and much different from their school days.
Soberano told the Inquirer that she interviewed students and a teacher as part of her research: “It was fun. I felt like I was a normal person.”
Directed by Jacen Tan; stars Alaric, Benjamin Heng, Rayve Zen
A mysterious virus wreaks havoc in an isolated army camp, forcing a lazy soldier and his tough commander to work on their survival.
According to Geekcrusade’s Diana Othman, “It’s basically ‘Shaun of the Dead,’ but with national service and a heavy dose of Singaporean humor.”