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; ® 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 and Matt Cooper.)
OPENING IN HOLLYWOOD THIS WEEK
"Arctic" _ Two plane-crash survivors are stranded in a frozen wasteland. With Mads Mikkelsen, Maria Thelma Smaradottir. Written by Joe Penna, Ryan Morrison. Directed by Penna. (1:37) PG-13.
"Braid" _ Two women play a twisted game from their childhood as part of a scheme to rob a mentally disturbed friend. With Madeline Brewer, Sarah Hay, Imogen Waterhouse. Written and directed by Mitzi Peirone. (1:22) R.
"A Breath Away" _ Parents try to save their infirm daughter as a mysterious dust cloud engulfs Paris. With Romain Duris, Olga Kurylenko. Written by Guillaume Lemans, Jimmy Bemon, Mathieu Delozier. Directed by Daniel Roby. In French and English with English subtitles. (1:29) NR.
"Cafe Con Leche" _ A human-trafficking case reveals a surprising connection between an ATF agent and a Mexico City defense attorney. With Martin Santander, Gerardo Taracena. Written by Santander, Wesley Adkins, Ray Gallardo. Directed by Gallardo. NR.
"Daughter of Mine" _ A young girl is torn between her biological mother and the woman who raised her. With Valeria Golino, Udo Kier. Written by Laura Bispuri, Francesca Manieri; based on a memoir by A.M. Homes. Directed by Bispuri. In Italian with English subtitles. (1:40) NR.
"For Now" _ Four young friends take a road trip around California. Written by and starring Hannah Barlow, Kane Senes, Katherine Du Bois; story by Barlow. Directed by Barlow, Senes. (1:20) NR.
"The Gandhi Murder" _ Police uncover a conspiracy to assassinate the Indian leader. With Stephen Lang, Vinnie Jones, Om Puri. Directed by Karim Traidia, Pankaj Sehgal. (2:18) NR.
"The Golem" _ A Jewish woman conjures a mystical creature to protect her village from invaders. With Hani Furstenberg, Ishai Golen. Written by Ariel Cohen. Directed by Doron Paz, Yoav Paz. (1:35) NR.
"Great, Great, Great" _ A young couple's engagement threatens to split them apart. With Sarah Kolasky, Daniel Beirne. Written by Kolasky and Adam Garnet Jones. Directed by Jones. (1:20) R.
"Hunter X Hunter: The Last Mission" _ Warriors channel a cosmic force in this anime tale. Written by Nobuaki Kishima, Yoshihiro Togashi. Directed by Keiichiro Kawaguchi. In Japanese with English subtitles. (1:37) NR.
"Jihadists" _ Documentary about Islamic extremism in North Africa. Written and directed by Francois Margolin, Lemine Ould Salem. In French with English subtitles. (1:15) NR.
"Miss Bala" _ A young woman is caught between a Mexican criminal gang and U.S. law enforcement. With Gina Rodriguez, Anthony Mackie, Thomas Dekker. Written by Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer. Directed by Catherine Hardwicke. (1:44) PG-13.
"Outlaws" _ Rival biker gangs in Australia head for a showdown. With Ryan Corr, Abbey Lee. Written by Matt Nable. Directed by Stephen McCallum. (1:32) R.
"Piercing" _ A married father has murderous plans for a young prostitute. With Mia Wasikowska, Christopher Abbott. Written and directed by Nicolas Pesce; based on a novel by Ryu Murakami. (1:21) R.
"Sharkwater Extinction" _ Documentary about illegal shark fishing. Written and directed by Rob Stewart. (1:28) NR.
"St. Bernard Syndicate" _ Two Danish men try to launch a business selling St. Bernard dogs in China. With Frederik Cilius Jorgensen, Rasmus Bruun. Written by Laerke Sanderhoff. Directed by Mads Brugger. In Danish and English with English subtitles. (1:40) NR.
"Then Came You" _ A young hypochondriac is befriended by a terminally ill British teen. With Asa Butterfield, Maisie Williams, Nina Dobrev, Peyton List, Tyler Hoechlin, Sonya Walger, Ken Jeong, David Koechner, Tituss Burgess, Margot Bingham. Written by Fergal Rock. Directed by Peter Hutchings. (1:37) NR.
"Tito and the Birds" _ A young boy seeks avian assistance to help stop a pandemic in this animated tale. Written by Eduardo Benaim, Gustavo Steinberg. Directed by Steinberg, Gabriel Bitar, Andre Catoto. In Portuguese with English subtitles. (1:13) NR.
"The Unicorn" _ A long-engaged couple decide to try something sexually adventurous. With Lauren Lapkus, Nick Rutherford, Lucy Hale, Beck Bennett, Beverly D'Angelo, Kyle Mooney. Written by Will Elliott, Kirk C. Johnson, Nicholas Rutherford; story by Robert Schwartzman. Directed by Schwartzman. (1:28) NR.
"Velvet Buzzsaw" _ Various art-world types meet grisly ends thanks to a deceased artist's haunted paintings. With Jake Gyllenhaal, John Malkovich, Toni Collette, Rene Russo. Written and directed by Dan Gilroy. (1:49) R.
"Who Will Write Our History" _ Documentary uses dramatic re-creations to tell the true story of Polish Jews who catalogued Nazi atrocities in the Warsaw Ghetto during WWII. With Piotr Glowacki. Written by Roberta Grossman; based on a novel by Samuel Kassow. Directed by Grossman. In English, Polish and Yiddish with English subtitles. (1:35) NR.
"The Favourite" _ This viciously entertaining period comedy-drama from director Yorgos Lanthimos ("The Lobster") returns us to the 18th century court of Queen Anne (a magnificent Olivia Colman) and the intrigue swirling around two women (Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone) vying for her favor. (J. C.) R Limited
"Happy as Lazzaro" _ Alice Rohrwacher's enchanting, time-bending third feature, about a group of sharecroppers on an Italian tobacco farm, is a deceptively plain-looking portrait of downtrodden lives that by the end all but glows with wonderment and surprise. (J. C.) PG-13 Netflix
"If Beale Street Could Talk" _ Barry Jenkins' follow-up to his Oscar-winning "Moonlight" is a visually and musically gorgeous adaptation of James Baldwin's novel, a 1970s Harlem love story that beautifully mixes past and present, the personal and the political. (J. C.) R Limited
"The Other Side of the Wind" _ Shot between 1970 and 1976 and then left unfinished for decades, Orson Welles' long-awaited final feature is a cracked, corrosive vision, a cinematic hall of mirrors that fascinatingly reflects the fraught circumstances of its making. (J. C.) R Netflix
"Roma" _ An extremely quiet, even meditative picture played at the softer pitch of reality, rather than the higher frequency of drama by writer-director-producer Alfonso Cuaron, whose childhood experiences are the bedrock of this family story. (K. Tu.) R Limited/Netflix
"Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" _ The creative brain trust of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller has thoroughly rejuvenated the Spider-Man myth in this quick-witted, formula-busting and visually gorgeous animated feature, which places a new kid named Miles Morales (voiced by Shameik Moore) behind the mask. (J.C.) PG
"A Star Is Born" _ No matter how many previous versions of "A Star Is Born" you've seen, the Bradley Cooper-Lady Gaga extravaganza about a star on the rise falling for a star on the way down should not be missed. (K. Tu.) R
"Widows" _ Viola Davis, Elizabeth Debicki and Michelle Rodriguez give superb performances as three very different, very desperate women executing a daring heist in this unusually gripping, meaty and politically charged thriller from director Steve McQueen. (J.C.) R
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