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  • TV This Week, Aug. 20-26: 'Jackie,' 'Fences' and more

    TV This Week, Aug. 20-26: 'Jackie,' 'Fences' and more

    SUNDAY DC Morse (Shaun Evans) tracks a serial killer on the fourth-season premiere of the mystery drama “Endeavour” on “Masterpiece.” 9 p.m. KOCE Meals on wheels: “The Great Food Truck Race” revs up for an eighth season. Tyler Florence hosts. 9 p.m. Food Network The two-night special “The New...

  • Having a Moment: Bridget Everett leaps from cabaret stage to silver screen

    Having a Moment: Bridget Everett leaps from cabaret stage to silver screen

    Fifteen minutes into the new film “Patti Cakes,” Bridget Everett slips in through a side door of a seedy tavern to music straight out of a spaghetti western at high noon. Behind the counter, her bartender daughter sizes up the situation: “Christ.” “Line up your ma a bomb,” Everett’s character says....

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  • 1987 revisited: Scribes, World War II through the eyes of babes and Mickey Rourke

    1987 revisited: Scribes, World War II through the eyes of babes and Mickey Rourke

    It was the ’80s, so the films of 1987 naturally had big stars, big hair and big soundtracks. The year’s most popular movie, however improbably, was a remake of a French comedy, “Three Men and a Baby,” starring Steve Guttenberg, Tom Selleck and Ted Danson, and directed by Leonard Nimoy. It beat...

  • The Moviegoer, Aug. 20-26

    The Moviegoer, Aug. 20-26

    Japanese Arthouse Classics The series begins with the Los Angeles premiere of the 4K restoration of Kenji Mizoguchi’s 1953 cautionary period drama Ugetsu, in which a married peasant farmer finds himself seduced by a ghostly noblewoman; it’s paired with Mizoguchi’s The Life of Oharu (1952), a tragic...

  • Natalie Portman, Lily-Rose Depp star in haunting drama 'Planetarium'

    Natalie Portman, Lily-Rose Depp star in haunting drama 'Planetarium'

    Although “Planetarium” may not wholly satisfy as the kind of statement film it so ambitiously aims to be, this intriguing drama, confidently directed by Rebecca Zlotowski (who co-wrote with Robin Campillo) proves a singular, at times haunting experience. In the late-1930s, as Nazi Germany tenses...

  • Struggling actor's life crumbles in the weirdly charming comedy 'Lemon'

    Struggling actor's life crumbles in the weirdly charming comedy 'Lemon'

    What is the “lemon” of director/co-writer Janicza Bravo’s deliriously deadpan feature debut “Lemon”? Is it the turquoise jalopy of protagonist Isaac (co-writer Brett Gelman) that breaks down on him in a moment of extreme distress, or is it, frankly, the man himself? Partners in life and comedy,...

  • Soviet-set drama 'The Fencer' deftly mixes sports and politics

    Soviet-set drama 'The Fencer' deftly mixes sports and politics

    “The Fencer,” Finland’s official Academy Award entry for 2016, is an effective mix of underdog sports drama and political thriller, inspired by the true-life story of celebrated fencing champ Endel Nelis. The 1953-set film finds Estonian resister Endel (a finely understated Märt Avandi) forced...

  • Hostage drama '6 Days' proves duller than real-life

    Hostage drama '6 Days' proves duller than real-life

    As Ben Affleck’s “Argo” effectively demonstrated, movies based on real-life events such as the 444-day Iran hostage crisis can be every bit as tensely unpredictable and thoroughly entertaining as their entirely fictional counterparts. The same, unfortunately, cannot be said for the considerably...

  • 'Women Who Kill' is a fresh twist on indie comedy, romance and serial killers

    'Women Who Kill' is a fresh twist on indie comedy, romance and serial killers

    Filled with a dry wit driven by its writer-director-star Ingrid Jungermann, “Women Who Kill” is a darkly comic indie that is a distinct product of its place and time. Its location is Park Slope in Brooklyn, and much of the drama takes place in a co-op grocery store, a quintessential neighborhood...

  • Justin Chon's drama 'Gook' revisits '92 L.A. riots with insight

    Justin Chon's drama 'Gook' revisits '92 L.A. riots with insight

    As its wounded, defiant provocation of a title suggests, “Gook” looks head-on at racial animosity, American-style. Set on the first day of the 1992 Los Angeles riots, Justin Chon’s drama is uneven but bristling with life, and it offers a new perspective on a calamitous moment, one whose 25th anniversary...

  • California coastal drama 'Liza, Liza Skies Are Grey' is one long journey

    California coastal drama 'Liza, Liza Skies Are Grey' is one long journey

    A nostalgic look at first love on the open road in the ’60s, “Liza, Liza, Skies Are Grey” feels like the work of a first-time filmmaker, though it comes from veteran writer-director Terry Sanders. With a résumé primarily populated by documentary films, two-time Oscar winner Sanders might be forgiven...

  • 'Lycan' recycles werewolf and horror formulas with little payoff

    'Lycan' recycles werewolf and horror formulas with little payoff

    An indistinct muddle of werewolf mythology, slasher formula and “teenagers in the woods” clichés, the horror pastiche “Lycan” might’ve been a passable picture if writer-director Bev Land had settled on what he was making. While its DIY spirit is admirable, this tedious shocker feels like it was...

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