Only ten films opening this week, huh? That’s nothing! Nothing, I say! Although two of them are among the year’s best movies (well, technically last year’s best) and another one is the flawed but very welcome Wonder Woman. So let’s dig in.
Abacus: Small Enough to Jail: Steve James looks at the only financial institution to face criminal charges after the economic collapse of 2008 — and how the family behind that institution refused to take the fall.
Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie: Rad mostly approves of this animated kiddie comedy, which adapts the first four Captain Underpants books. His seven-year-old approves wholeheartedly, though.
City of Tiny Lights: I was less enthusiastic about this London noir than Rad, though we both agree that Riz Ahmed makes the most of a rare leading role as a private investigator drawn into an entirely predictable web of murder and betrayal. Also, too many flashbacks.
Drone: “The title is ironic, see? The operator is the real drone!” Yeah, whatever, your movie’s still terrible and Sean Bean is really struggling with that accent.
The Founders: Just weeks after Tommy’s Honour opened, here’s another movie about the history of golf — but this one’s a documentary rather than a drama, examining the women who formed the LPGA in the late 1940s.
Graduation: The latest from Cristian Mungiu plays like the Romanian version of A Serious Man, which is to say that it’s despairingly complicated and not a comedy. It’s also great cinema.
Score: A Film Music Documentary: Glenn goes straight up the middle on Matt Schrader’s movie-music doc, appreciating the ground it covers while fully aware that it could have covered so much more.
Tanna: Jose raises some very good points about the ethnographic validity of Martin Butler and Bentley Dean’s Oscar-nominated drama.
Werewolf: Ashley McKenzie’s study of two addicts whose differing rates of recovery threaten their relationship tells a familiar story, but with a focus and intensity that reminds us why this story keeps getting told. It’s fantastic. Don’t miss it.
Wonder Woman: Yeah, the bar was set awfully low after the last three DC movies, but Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot still clear it with ease, delivering a proper adventure with a hero who’s a complex character rather than a clenched murderbot. The ending’s kinda samey, though.
There, that’s everything. What are you guys doing this weekend?