Other new movie releases for Feb. 23
New in Theaters:
Trailers make “Game Night” look like a two-star dark comedy in the vein of “Horrible Bosses,” but early reviews suggest the film fares far better, with the A.V. Club writing that it plays like “murder mystery night at Second City,” which doesn't sound half bad.
Natalie Portman stars in the latest from director Alex Garland (the great “Ex Machina), a complex sci-fi thriller with a plot that can't be summarized in a few pithy lines. (I wrote and deleted a description three times before throwing in the towel.)
The film, based onThe New York Times best-seller, follows Rhiannon (Angourie Rice), a teenager who falls in love with A, a mysterious soul who inhabits a new body each day. (So basically “Quantum Leap” meets YA romance.)
The most recent film from great English animation house Aardman (“Chicken Run”) ventures back in time to when early Homo sapiens accidentally invented soccer by kicking around a flaming orb of magma spit up by a volcano. Expect a heaping dose of dry, British wit that plays well to adults, while children should be captivated by the claymation.
Rutger Hauer and Billy Zane star in this supernatural biblical epic, which centers on a hero whose power is derived from his hair. As a bald(ing) man, I feel personally attacked.
For fans of Austrian auteur Michael Haneke (“Amour,” “Funny Games”), a new film is worth celebrating, even if this tale of a bourgeois French family isn't quite his best work. (3 stars)
“Fifty Shades Freed”
The third (and final, finally) film in the erotic, monochromatically named trilogy finds kink-fellows Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) and Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) joined at the altar, which is also, ironically, the couple's safe word.
That “Black Panther” carries such high cultural significance in 2018 doesn't say a lot about where we are as a society, but it's more than just an overdue step of onscreen representation. It's also a rollicking good blockbuster, even if it doesn't quite reinvent the wheel. (4 stars)