Saturday, April 11, 2015

Saturday Night Movie Recommendations with Abe

Welcome back to a weekly feature here at Movies With Abe. I'm going to be providing a handy guide to a few choice movies currently playing in theatres as well as several films newly released on DVD. I invite you to add in your thoughts on any films I haven’t seen in the comments below. Understandably, some weeks will have considerably fewer releases to address than others.

Now Playing in Theatres

Cheatin’ (recommended): This 76-minute animated film is mostly silent and uses detailed evocative images to tell its story of romance and infidelity. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea but it is a captivating wonder to behold for those with an interest in imaginative animation. Read my review from last week.

Clouds of Sils Maria (highly recommended): Juliette Binoche stars in this complicated, fascinating tale of stardom and an esteemed actress returning to her first project in a markedly different role. Binoche, Chloe Grace Moretz, and Kristen Stewart in particular are terrific as personalities in celebrity culture. Now playing at IFC Center and Lincoln Plaza. Read my review from Wednesday.

Effie Gray (mixed bag): Dakota Fanning stars in this dramatization of the life of the long-suffering wife of an art critic. The overarching story might be interesting, but the way it plans out certainly isn’t, and Fanning is not the right choice to take on the role in question. Now playing at Regal E-Walk, Bow Tie Cinemas Chelsea, and City Cinemas Beekman Theatre. Read my review from last week.

Kill Me Three Times (recommended): Entertainment is paramount in this Australian comedy-thriller with enjoyable performances from Simon Pegg, Teresa Palmer, Alice Braga, Luke Hemsworth, and a handful of others. Now playing at Landmark Sunshine. Read my review from Thursday.

New to DVD

The Imitation Game (recommended): This World War II thriller stars the terrific Benedict Cumberbatch as the leader of a British intelligence unit tasked with breaking the German enigma code. It’s a cool concept that makes for an enthralling if not entirely memorable film.

Intersterllar (highly recommended): Christopher Nolan’s latest film is a grand odyssey into space, one with enduring intensity and marvelous framing. It didn’t get a warm reception from critics and audiences, but aside from one questionable plot point, this is one of his greatest achievements yet.

A Most Violent Year (highly recommended): Oscar Isaac is excellent in J.C. Chandor’s marvelous and entrancing portrait of 1980s New York City and one businessman’s struggle to overcome unknown threats and come out on top. All elements work together to make this a terrific film, and it’s a shame that an expectedly good Jessica Chastain is the only one who got any credit.

Wild (highly recommended): Reese Witherspoon delivers her best performance in years at the center of this emotional drama about a woman who sets out on a 1000-mile hike to redeem herself. Witherspoon is the reason to see this strong and worthwhile film.

Now on Netflix Instant Streaming

Life Partners (recommended): TV stars Leighton Meester and Gillian Jacobs star as best friends, one gay and one straight, who navigate through young adulthood together in this unexpectedly entertaining delight.

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