This Week at the Movies, Part 1 (Apr. 11-13, 2014)

Our critics have been hard at work reviewing the latest films. Here is a look at what’s coming out this weekend (in select cities, check your local listings) and what else may be in theaters right now.

Opening: Apr. 11-13, 2014

Wide (United States)

Draft Day

For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Oculus

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Rio 2

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Expanding (United States)

The Raid 2: Berandal

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Limited (United States)

Cuban Fury

Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews

  • Excerpt: …like a new sitcom with a great cast that’s so badly conceived and executed it’s yanked after two episodes. Only the genuine sweetness between Frost and Jones and McShane’s wacky casting make this film remotely bearable.

Joe

Chris Barsanti @ Film Journal International

  • Excerpt: A low-key but rejuvenated-looking Nicolas Cage cuts an impressive figure as the gruff hero of this muscular and wry small-town Southern noir.

Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews

  • Excerpt: The film may take one too many detours on an overly familiar road, but it’s been crafted with real feeling.

Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion

  • Excerpt: A powerful piece of Southern gothic that gives Nicolas Cage his best role in years.

Only Lovers Left Alive

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2014 Films In Theaters Now In Select Areas

50 to 1

Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion

  • Excerpt: Earnest but cliche-ridden.

Alan Partridge

Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews

  • Excerpt: One of the great things Coogan does with his ambitious, self-absorbed, offensive, cowardly and not-as-bright-as-he-thinks-he-is character is make him capable of guilt and regret, always keeping us holding out for his redemption.

Calvary

Ross Miller @ Thoughts On Film

  • Excerpt: It gets you laughing and leaves you thinking, grabbing you from minute one and not letting go until its haunting final shot. Brilliant.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

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Cheap Thrills

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Divergent

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Dom Hemingway

Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews

  • Excerpt: Law conjures a somewhat dim man who yet has quite the way with words, a hair trigger guy who might cry or bite your face off at any given moment. It’s a balls to the wall performance and utterly entertaining.

Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com

  • Excerpt: Self-consciously written and directed redemption saga, it’s certainly not as compelling as other dramas in this British gangland genre.

Fading Gigolo

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com

  • Excerpt: A charming, funny and oddball drama about a gentle, quiet, and sensitive florist who knows how to give women pleasure.

The French Minister

Carlos del Río @ El rincón de Carlos del Río [Spanish]

  • Excerpt: Crónicas diplomáticas es divertida, y a veces lo es mucho, porque ves cómo funciona un ministerio desde dentro, y Tavernier te lo cuenta con un gran reparto y un ritmo rapidísimo.

God’s Not Dead

Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema

  • Excerpt: God’s Not Dead is a movie with its heart in the right place and its head up its butt. It contains a microcosm of an idea, debating God’s place in the natural order, but spends most of the time as a recruitment drive for the Christian faith in which you are recruited with your arm twisted behind your back.

The Grand Budapest Hotel

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Grand Piano

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In the Blood

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Jews of Egypt

Donald Levit @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Jodorowsky’s Dune

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The Lego Movie

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Living Things

Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema

  • Excerpt: Eric Shapiro’s Living Things is, very likely, the most exhausting movie you’ll ever see. And yet, there are no car chases, no gun battles, no cacophony of sound design. Here is a movie that is constructed almost entirely out of words. It contains only two actors, seated at a dinner table debating each other for just over an hour.

The Machine

Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema

  • Excerpt: When I get home, I spend a majority of my time on the computer. I don’t think I’m alone. This is the landscape of the 21st century, and I suspect that I am not alone in the opinion that we are less than five years away from the development of computers that can think for themselves. Will I be so dependent then? Having seen Caradog James’ effective science fiction thriller The Machine, I have reason to think not.

The Monuments Men

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Muppets Most Wanted

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Noah

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Non-Stop

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Nymphomaniac: Volumes 1 & 2

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The Quiet Ones

MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com

  • Excerpt: There aren’t many outright scares here, and when they do come, they are curiously circumspect, but the old-fashioned Hammer Horror atmosphere is appealingly spooky.

Ross Miller @ Thoughts On Film

  • Excerpt: It will leave anyone but the newest of horror converts feeling let down.

The Retrieval

Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat

Sabotage

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Stranger by the Lake

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That Demon Within

James Marsh @ Twitch

  • Excerpt: Hong Kong’s reigning champion of pyrotechnic mayhem continues to move outside of his comfort zone with the psychological crime drama That Demon Within, but the results fail to hit the mark as poor plotting, loose direction and an increasingly preposterous script do their best to undermine a spirited central performance from Daniel Wu.

Under the Skin

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The Unknown Known

Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire

  • Excerpt: It’s easier, for us and frankly for them, to dismiss those whose politics and policy decisions we abhor as monsters or Bond villains and leave it at that. What’s more interesting — in our interactions, and in our understanding of history — is to understand how smart people can make giant miscalculations, and dig in their heels.

Jonathan Richards @ www.jonrichardsplace.com

  • Excerpt: To his supporters, he will come off as a no-nonsense, witty, unflappable sage. His detractors will see a smug, narcissistic sociopath to whom his architecture of the deaths of hundreds of thousands, and the devastation of America’s economy and prestige, are matters to be dismissed with a quip and a smirk.

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: “The Unknown Known” is a valuable window inside the warped mind of an irrational sociopath who, like those around him during his time in Office — Dick Cheney, George W. Bush, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, etc. — acted with unfathomable incompetence that they were able to disguise with the complicity of corporate news media.

War of the Worlds: Goliath

Marina Antunes @ Quiet Earth

Le Week-End

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Young & Beautiful

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: For his latest filmic exploration François Ozon addresses a complex mix of sexual, personal, social, familial, gender-based, and technological issues, inexorably honing in on a striking synthesis of generational catharsis.

2013 Films In Theaters Now In Select Areas

47 Ronin

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Captain Phillips

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Ernest & Celestine

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The Fifth Estate

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Frozen

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Grudge Match

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The Invisible Woman

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Jesus People

Marina Antunes @ Row Three

Planes

For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Saving Mr. Banks

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The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

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2014 Films (Coming Soon)

3D Naked Ambition

James Marsh @ Screen International

  • Excerpt: Brimming with colloquial Hong Kong humour and plenty of bare flesh, Lee Kung-lok’s jolly romp through the Japanese AV (adult film) scene is slight yet entertaining fare, and likely to offend only the most bashful of audiences.

Ich Hunger

Bev Questad @ It’s Just Movies

  • Excerpt: A sociopath on the loose, Creature has no empathy for his prey. He delights in the chase and his hunger happily motivates his hunt for the next meal.

The John Hines Show

Bob Cashill @ WCCO.com

  • Excerpt: Talking movies (NOAH) with WCCO host John Hines

A Long Way Down

José Arce @ LaButaca.net [Spanish]

  • Excerpt: Pascal Chaumeil sigue abriendo zanja internacional en su trabajo con esta floja adaptación de la novela de Nick Hornby que sacrifica su mordacidad para abrirse a un discurso más bien meloso.

A Long Way Down

Jason Pirodsky @ Expats.cz

  • Excerpt: Shamelessly cloying, so misguided and vacuous it made me want to scream, A Long Way Down is an unusually bad test of your patience that is bound to induce squirms.

The Other Woman

Blake Howard @ Graffiti with Punctuation

  • Excerpt: The Other Woman is frustratingly indecisive.

Thomas Keating: A Rising Tide of Silence

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com

  • Excerpt: An elegant and enlightening portrait of the life and ministry of Father Thomas Keating, one of the towering figures on the global spirituality scene.

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