Ratings by the Motion Picture Association of America are: (G) for general audiences; (PG) parental guidance urged because of material possibly unsuitable for children; (PG-13) parents are strongly cautioned to give guidance for attendance of children younger than 13; (R) restricted, younger than 17 admitted only with parent or adult guardian; (NC-17) no one 17 and younger admitted.
(Critics' Choices capsule reviews are by Kenneth Turan (K.Tu.), Justin Chang (J.C.) and other reviewers. Openings compiled by Kevin Crust.)
OPENING IN HOLLYWOOD THIS WEEK
"A Ciambra" _ Italian coming-of-age drama with Pio Amato, Koudous Seihon, Damiano Amato. Written and directed by Jonas Carpignano. Italy's Oscar submission.
"Braven" _ Action-thriller with Jason Momoa, Stephen Lang. Directed by Lin Oeding.
"Bucky & the Squirrels" _ Music mockumentary written and directed by Allen Katz.
"The Cage Fighter" _ Martial arts documentary featuring Joe Carman, Vernon Beach, Callie Carman. Directed by Jeff Unay.
"Driving While Black" _ Comedy with Dominique Purdy. Directed by Paul Sapiano.
"A Fantastic Woman" _ A Chilean trans woman fights for her rights after the death of her older lover. With Daniela Vega. Directed by Sebastian Lelio.
"Have a Nice Day" _ Chinese neo-noir animation. Directed by Liu Jian.
"A Lesson in Cruelty" _ Comedy-drama. Directed by Alex Salazar.
"Living Among Us" _ Supernatural horror with John Heard. Directed by Brian A. Metcalf.
"The Lucky Man" _ Action with Jesse James. Directed by Norman McGuire.
"The Music of Silence" _ Biographical drama based on the life of singer Andrea Bocelli. With Toby Sebastian. Directed by Michael Radford.
"On Body and Soul" _ Hungarian drama about a man and a woman who discover they somehow share the same dream every night. With Alexandra Borbely, Geza Morcsanyi. Directed by Ildiko Enyedi.
"Scorched Earth" _ Action/sci-fi with Gina Carano, John Hannah, Ryan Robbins. Directed by Peter Howitt.
"Shot in the Dark" _ Basketball documentary set in Chicago. Directed by Dustin Nakao Haider.
"Wastelander" _ Post-apocalyptic action with Brendan Guy Murphy. Directed by Angelo Lopes
"Winchester" _ Gothic thriller with Helen Mirren, Jason Clarke, Sarah Snook. Directed by the Spierig Brothers.
"Call Me By Your Name" _ Timothee Chalamet and Armie Hammer give superb performances as two young men falling in love in the northern Italian countryside in this rapturously beautiful collaboration between director Luca Guadagnino and screenwriter James Ivory. (J.C.) R.
"The Disaster Artist" _ James Franco's shrewd, affectionate and frequently hilarious comedy re-creates and deconstructs the making of Tommy Wiseau's cult landmark "The Room," with Franco giving a fully committed, even haunted performance as Wiseau. (J.C.) R
"Dunkirk" _ Both intimate and epic, as emotional as it is tension-filled, Christopher Nolan's immersive World War II drama is being ballyhooed as a departure for the bravura filmmaker, but in truth the reason it succeeds so masterfully is that it is anything but. (K.Tu.) PG-13.
"Hostiles" _ Written and directed by Scott Cooper and powered by a dynamic trio of interwoven performances by Christian Bale, Wes Studi and Rosamund Pike, this latest example of the Western revival grabs you by the throat and holds on for the duration. (K.Tu.) R.
"Humor Me" _ One of the best films of its kind, in which a floundering adult gets back on track with help from a senior-age parent or grandparent, writer-director Sam Hoffman's charming, well-performed tale, starring Jemaine Clement and Elliott Gould, is familiar territory worth revisiting. (Gary Goldstein) NR.
"Lady Bird" _ As warm as it is smart, and it is very smart, this portrait of a high school senior year marks actor-screenwriter Greta Gerwig's superb debut as a solo director and yet another astonishing performance by star Saoirse Ronan. (K.Tu.) R.
"Paddington 2" _ Everyone's favorite Peruvian-born, London-based bear is back, this time facing off against a nefarious stage actor (Hugh Grant) in this beautifully structured and executed comedy from director/co-writer Paul King. (J.C.) PG.
"The Post" _ Director Steven Spielberg and stars Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks combine for a thriller cum civics lesson showing the value of newspapers hanging together and holding government accountable for deception. (K.Tu.) PG-13.
"The Shape of Water" _ Magical, thrilling and romantic to the core, a sensual and fantastical "Beauty and the Beast" tale with moral overtones, Guillermo del Toro's film plays by all the rules and none of them, going its own way with fierce abandon. (K.Tu.) R.
"Star Wars: The Last Jedi" _ Building and improving on "The Force Awakens," writer-director Rian Johnson's grand space opera is the first flat-out terrific "Star Wars" movie since "The Empire Strikes Back," full of dramatic echoes of George Lucas' original trilogy but also rich in surprise and imagination. (J.C.) PG-13.
"Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" _ Uncommon writer-director Martin McDonagh and a splendid cast top-lined by Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson and Sam Rockwell present a savage film, even a dangerous one, the blackest take-no-prisoners farce in quite some time. (K.Tu.) R.
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