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.T.), Justin Chang (J.C.) and other reviewers. Openings compiled by Kevin Crust and Matt Cooper.)
OPENING IN HOLLYWOOD THIS WEEK
"Abduction" _ An American in Vietnam teams with a local assassin to battle otherworldly forces. With Scott Adkins, Andy On. Written by Mike MacLean. Directed by Ernie Barbarash. (1:46) NR.
"The Black Godfather" _ Documentary on influential music executive Clarence Avant, who counseled Bill Withers, Quincy Jones, Muhammad Ali, Hank Aaron, Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, and many others. Directed by Reginald Hudlin. (1:58) NR.
"Changeland" _ A man whose wife cheated on him takes a former childhood friend along with him instead on a vacation in Thailand. With Seth Green, Breckin Meyer, Macaulay Culkin, Brenda Song, Rachel Bloom. Written and directed by Green. (1:26) R.
"The Child Remains" _ An expectant couple on vacation find horror at a secluded country inn. With Suzanne Clement, Allan Hawco, Shelley Thompson. Written and directed by Michael Melski. (1:47) NR.
"Dark Phoenix" _ The X-Men face off against their own Jean Grey after she returns from outer space following a near-fatal encounter with a mysterious cosmic force. With Sophie Turner, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Tye Sheridan, Alexandra Shipp, Jessica Chastain. Written and directed by Simon Kinberg. (2:00) PG-13.
"Everything Is Free" _ An American painter in Colombia begins a relationship with his best friend's younger brother. With Brian Jordan Alvarez, Morgan Krantz, Peter Vack. Written and directed by Alvarez. In English and Spanish with English subtitles. (1:32) NR.
"Free Trip to Egypt" _ Documentary about a Muslim entrepreneur who invites Americans fearful of Islam on a trip to the Middle East. Directed by Ingrid Serban. (1:38) NR.
"Ghost Fleet" _ Documentary on activists working to free enslaved fisherman in Indonesia. Directed by Shannon Service, Jeffrey Waldron. (1:30) NR.
"Hallowed Ground" _ A lesbian couple vacationing in a rural area get caught in the middle of a feud between local Native Americans and a twisted cult. With Sherri Eakin, Ritchie Montgomery, Lindsay Anne Williams, Miles Doleac. Written and directed by Doleac. (1:57) NR.
"Kanarie" _ A young man joins a traveling choir as part of his compulsory military service in apartheid-era South Africa. With Schalk Bezuidenhout, Hannes Otto. Written by Charl-Johan Lingenfelder, Christiaan Olwagen. Directed by Olwagen. In English and Afrikaans with English subtitles. (2:00) NR.
"Katie Says Goodbye" _ A teenage waitress in the Southwest turns to prostitution in hopes of earning enough money to move to the Bay Area. With Olivia Cooke, Christopher Abbott, Mary Steenburgen, Jim Belushi, Mireille Enos. Written and directed by Wayne Roberts. (1:28) NR.
"The Last Black Man in San Francisco" _ A young man hopes to regain the Victorian house his grandfather built in the city by the bay. With Jimmie Fails, Jonathan Majors, Rob Morgan, Tichina Arnold, Danny Glover. Written by Joe Talbot and Rob Richert; story by Fails and Talbot. Directed by Talbot. (2:00) R.
"Late Night" _ The host of a struggling talk show hires her first female staff writer. With Emma Thompson, Mindy Kaling, John Lithgow, Amy Ryan, Hugh Dancy, Reid Scott, Denis O'Hare. Written by Kaling. Directed by Nisha Ganatra. (1:42) R.
"The Lavender Scare" _ Documentary on the U.S. government's decades-long purge of gay and lesbian federal employees. Narrated by Glenn Close. Featuring the voices of Cynthia Nixon, Zachary Quinto, T.R. Knight, David Hyde Pierce. Based on a book by David K. Johnson. Directed by Josh Howard. (1:17) NR.
"Leaving Home, Coming Home: A Portrait of Robert Frank" _ Documentary shot in 2004 profiles the photographer, filmmaker and author. Directed by Gerald Fox. (1:25) NR.
"Loopers: The Caddie's Long Walk" _ Documentary about the close relationships between golfers and their caddies. Narrated by Bill Murray. Directed by Jason Baffa. (1:20) NR.
"Mine 9" _ Nine coal miners in Appalachia try to survive in the aftermath of an explosion. With Terry Serpico, Mark Ashworth, Kevin Sizemore. Written and directed by Eddie Mensore. (1:23) NR.
"Mouthpiece" _ The death of her mother throws a young woman into crisis. With Amy Nostbakken, Norah Sadava, Maev Beaty. Written by Patricia Rozema, Nostbakken, Sadava; based on the play by Nostbakken. Directed by Rozema. (1:31) NR.
"Papi Chulo" _ A lonely Los Angeles weatherman hires a Latino day laborer to be his friend. With Matt Bomer, Alejandro Patino, Elena Campbell-Martinez, Wendi McLendon-Covey. Written and directed by John Butler. (1:28) R.
"Pavarotti" _ Documentary sings the praises of opera legend Luciano Pavarotti. Directed by Ron Howard. (1:55) PG-13.
"Project Ithaca" _ Abductees aboard an alien spaceship must band together to survive. With James Gallanders, Deragh Campbell, Daniel Fathers. Written by Anthony Artibello, Kevin C. Bjerkness. Directed by Nicholas Humphries. (1:24) R.
"The Secret Life of Pets 2" _ A sequel to the computer-animated comedy reveals more of the antics our animal companions get up to when we're not around. With the voices of Lake Bell, Hannibal Buress, Dana Carvey, Harrison Ford, Tiffany Haddish, Kevin Hart, Pete Holmes, Ellie Kemper, Nick Kroll, Bobby Moynihan, Patton Oswalt, Jenny Slate, Eric Stonestreet. Written by Brian Lynch. Directed by Chris Renaud, Jonathan Del Val. (1:26) NR.
"16 Shots" _ Documentary examines the 2014 shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald by Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke and the ensuing cover-up. Directed by Richard Rowley. (1:32) NR.
"The Spy Behind Home Plate" _ Documentary about Jewish baseball player Moe Berg, who worked for the OSS during WWII. Directed by Aviva Kempner. (1:41) NR.
"Too Late to Die Young" _ Coming-of-age drama set in Chile after the fall of the Pinochet regime in 1990. With Demian Hernandez, Antar Machado, Magdalena Totoro. Written and directed by Dominga SotoMayor Castillo. In Spanish with English subtitles. (1:50) NR.
"The Wandering Soap Opera" _ Chilean send-up of Spanish-language telenovelas. With Luis Alarcon, Patricia Rivadeneira, Francisco Reyes. Written by Pia Rey, Raoul Ruiz. Directed by Ruiz, Valeria Sarmiento. In Spanish with English subtitles. (1:20) NR.
"Woodstock: Three Days That Defined a Nation" _ Documentary looks back at the creation of the culture-shifting 1969 music festival in upstate New York. With Joan Baez, Richie Havens, Stephen Stills. Written by Barak Goodman, Don Kleszy. Directed by Goodman. (1:46) NR.
"Amazing Grace" _ Shot during the live recording sessions of Aretha Franklin's soaring 1972 gospel album "Amazing Grace," this long-buried concert documentary once was lost but now is found _ gloriously so. (J.C.) NR
"Avengers: Endgame" _ After 11 years and 21 previous films, this opening chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe comes to a mighty finish with this thrilling, exhausting and inevitably moving adventure featuring Iron Man, Captain America and all the others we've met along the way. (J.C.) PG-13
"Knock Down the House" _ By being there at the start of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's already legendary career, filmmaker Rachel Lears captured lightning in a bottle in this documentary on four different and compelling women, each of whom mounted a grassroots primary challenge to an entrenched incumbent. (K.T.) NR Netflix
"Non-Fiction" _ French writer-director Olivier Assayas' witty and charming romantic comedy, top-lined by an effervescent Juliette Binoche and a cool Guillaume Canet, is an enticing blend of the comic and the serious, a smart and sassy examination of the way we live now. (K.T.) R
"Photograph" _ Writer-director Ritesh Batra's slightly elliptical, understated romance between two lonely souls is a lovely, charming and gently transporting journey that captures the bustling, workaday sides of Mumbai life with vigor and passion. (Gary Goldstein) PG-13
(c)2019 Los Angeles Times
Visit the Los Angeles Times at www.latimes.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.n