OPENING THIS WEEK
Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun
by Kam Williams
For movies opening December 19, 2014
BIG BUDGET FILMS
Annie (PG for mild epithets and rude humor) Quvenzhane Wallis portrays Little Orphan Annie in this contemporary update of the classic musical inspired by the Broadway play based on the 1920s comic strip character. Cast includes Jamie Foxx, Cameron Diaz, Rose Byrne, Bobby Cannavale and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje.
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (PG-13 for intense violence and frightening images) Director Peter Jackson brings down the curtain on the Tolkien fantasy franchise with this fitting finale featuring Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) and friends in an epic showdown with Smaug the Dragon (Benedict Cumberbatch). With Orlando Bloom, Ian McKellan, Lee Pace, Luke Evans and Hugo Weaving.
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb (PG for mild action, rude humor and brief epithets) Third installment in the fantasy franchise inspired by Milan Trenc’s illustrated children’s book sends the feckless protagonist (Ben Stiller) on a globe-spanning quest to save the magic before it is gone forever. Supporting cast includes Owen Wilson, Ricky Gervais, Steve Coogan, Dick Van Dyke and the late Mickey Rooney and Robin Williams.
INDEPENDENT & FOREIGN FILMS
Ask Me Anything (Unrated) Bittersweet bildungsroman about a high school grad (Britt Robertson) who chronicles all of her adventures in an anonymous blog, when she takes a year off to find herself before starting college. With Justing Long, Martin Sheen, Christian Slater and Robert Patrick.
Farewell, Herr Schwarz (Unrated) Post World War II documentary follows a 30 year-old Jewish woman’s attempt to learn why her Holocaust survivor grandfather abandoned her mother for a new flame following his liberation by the Allies. (In Hebrew, German and English with subtitles)
Goodbye to All That (Unrated) Midlife crisis comedy revolving around a clueless family man (Paul Schneider) who embarks on a string of one-night stands after being blindsided by his miserably-married wife’s (Melanie Lynskey) demand for a divorce. With Heather Graham, Amy Sedaris, Heather Lawless and Anna Camp.
Inside the Mind of Leonardo (Unrated) Reverential biopic about Leonardo Da Vinci (Peter Capaldi) based on the 6,000 pages of handwritten notes and drawings contained in the Italian Renaissance artist’s private journals.
Life of an Actress: The Musical (Unrated) Broadway producer Paul Chau wrote and directed this musical revolving around the trials and tribulations of three aspiring actress (Allison Case, Taylor Louderman and Orfeh) working as waitresses at a diner while waiting for their big break. Ensemble includes Jason Babinsky, Amelie McKendry and Mandy Fisher.
Mr. Turner (R for sexuality) Timothy Spall plays the title role in this historical biopic chronicling the last quarter-century in the life of J.M.W. Turner (1775-1851), the eccentric English artist primarily known for painting landscapes. With Paul Jesson, Dorothy Atkinson and Marion Bailey.
A Small Section of the World (Unrated) Tale of female empowerment about a group of women who sparked a coffee-growing revolution in Costa Rica.
Song of the Sea (PG for peril, pipe smoking and mild profanity) Animated fantasy about the last of the selkies, seals that transform themselves into women in accordance with Irish and Scottish legend. Voice cast includes Brendan Gleeson, Fionnula Flanagan and Pat Shortt.