Movie recommendations from critics Kenneth Turan and Justin Chang.
Baby Driver Edgar Wright’s exuberant, one-of-a-kind vehicular-action-thriller-musical-romance stars Ansel Elgort as a tinnitus-afflicted, music-loving getaway driver alongside a superb supporting cast that includes Kevin Spacey, Lily James, Jamie Foxx, Jon Hamm and Eiza Gonzalez. (Justin Chang) R.
Battle of the Sexes This enjoyable and entertaining film, with the gifted and innately likable actors Emma Stone and Steve Carell as Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, is most involving when it deals not with sports or society, but with the personal struggles both players, especially King, were going through in the run-up to their 1973 tennis match. (Kenneth Turan) PG-13.
The Big Sick Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan are terrific as a young couple navigating the challenges of interracial romance and Muslim immigrant identity in director Michael Showalter's delightful, serious-minded comedy, which also features powerhouse supporting turns from Holly Hunter and Ray Romano. (Justin Chang) R.
Brad's Status Mike White's smart, empathetic new comedy of despair follows a middle-age man (Ben Stiller, giving one of his best performances) who can't resist the urge to compare himself with his more successful friends. (Justin Chang) R.
Columbus John Cho and Haley Lu Richardson play two strangers who go on a walking-and-talking tour of the modernist architecture in Columbus, Ind., in this serenely intelligent, gorgeously contemplative first feature from writer-director Kogonada. (Justin Chang) NR.
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. (Kenneth Turan) PG-13.
Girls Trip Regina Hall, Jada Pinkett Smith, Queen Latifah and a revelatory Tiffany Haddish play four women renewing the bonds of friendship on a New Orleans weekend getaway in this hilariously raunchy and sensationally assured new comedy from director Malcolm D. Lee (“The Best Man”). (Justin Chang) R.
Good Time Robert Pattinson gives a revelatory performance as a scuzzy small-time crook going nowhere very fast in this moody, relentless and impeccably observed New York thriller directed by Josh and Benny Safdie. (Justin Chang) R.
Lucky As a small-town curmudgeon contemplating his own mortality, Harry Dean Stanton gives one of his final and greatest performances in this insistently low-key, dryly funny valentine to the actor's life and career. (Justin Chang) NR.
mother! Jennifer Lawrence plays the young wife of a poet (Javier Bardem) besieged by a number of unexpected visitors in this darkly exhilarating house-of-horrors thriller written and directed by Darren Aronofsky. (Justin Chang) R.
Stronger Jake Gyllenhaal gives one of his most restrained, affecting performances as 2013 Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman in this straightforward but shrewd and perceptive recovery drama from director David Gordon Green. (Justin Chang) R.
Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton Even if surfing is not a major interest, Hamilton's personal journey is extraordinary enough that we feel privileged to have such an intimate documentary glimpse into how it all went down. (Kenneth Turan) NR.
War for the Planet of the Apes An eerie quiet descends over this grim and masterful third "Planet of the Apes" prequel, directed with bleak beauty by Matt Reeves (“Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”) and crowned by another superb performance-capture turn from Andy Serkis as the soulful chimpanzee Caesar. (Justin Chang) PG-13.
Wind River Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen star in the most accomplished violent thriller in recent memory, a tense tale of murder on a Native American reservation made with authenticity, plausibility and wall-to-wall filmmaking skill by writer-director Taylor Sheridan. (Kenneth Turan) R.