ENTERTAINMENT MOVIES

Movie reviews for the weekend


  • Naughty 'Neighbors' a good mix of the silly and sweet

    Naughty 'Neighbors' a good mix of the silly and sweet

    The outrageous new movie "Neighbors" is filled with the perverse pleasure of watching the R-rated growing pains of Generation Next — including the young and restless comedy players in Hollywood responsible for it. Reality bites everyone eventually, so welcome to the neighborhood. Starring Seth...

  • Jon Favreau's 'Chef' has all the ingredients for a hit

    Jon Favreau's 'Chef' has all the ingredients for a hit

    Writer-director-star Jon Favreau cooks up tureens of fun and charm in "Chef," a welcome return to his more intimate, indie film roots ("Swingers," "Made") after helming such mega-budget pictures as "Iron Man," "Iron Man 2" and "Cowboys & Aliens." As Carl Casper, a respected L.A. chef who finds...

  • 'Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return' lacks brains, heart, nerve

    'Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return' lacks brains, heart, nerve

    "Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return" picks up where L. Frank Baum's "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" (and Victor Fleming's 1939 live-action adaptation "The Wizard of Oz") left off. But the new 3-D animation feels like a formulaic knockoff of the original, replacing most everything whimsical about its...

  • Gia Coppola's 'Palo Alto' conjures restless, unformed youth

    Gia Coppola's 'Palo Alto' conjures restless, unformed youth

    Written and directed by Gia Coppola, "Palo Alto" is adapted from a collection of short stories by James Franco and conjures a delicate, very specific sense of middle-class adolescence, the indeterminate, nascent feelings of the teenage years. Small moments can feel epic in scale, such as when a...

  • 'Now: In the Wings on a World Stage' shows romance of theater

    'Now: In the Wings on a World Stage' shows romance of theater

    As much as theater and film have in common, and that's a lot, their core differences can be formidable. A film is the same every time you see it, while "the thrill of theater," says Sam Mendes, who has worked in both arenas, "is the fact that it's alive, happening once only in front of your eyes....

  • Richard Ayoade's 'The Double' is tense and charming

    Richard Ayoade's 'The Double' is tense and charming

    With Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky as inspiration, "The Double," starring Jesse Eisenberg and Mia Wasikowska, is a darkly ironic and skillfully surreal examination of an unrealized life. It is an impressive second film from British director Richard Ayoade, who continues to spend considerable...

  • 'God's Pocket' is empty of the Philip Seymour Hoffman you want

    'God's Pocket' is empty of the Philip Seymour Hoffman you want

    If, like me, you were hoping that "God's Pocket," starring the late Philip Seymour Hoffman in one of his final films, would feature yet another of the actor's distinctive turns, you are fresh out of luck. Hoffman's character, Mickey Scarpato, is a guy whose luck, if he ever had any, ran out long...

  • 'Mom's Night Out' a one-dimensional bore

    'Mom's Night Out' a one-dimensional bore

    "Moms' Night Out" is a hectic mess that does just the opposite of what it clearly set out to do: It makes motherhood seem like one of the most ill-conceived ideas since New Coke. This would-be comedy, directed by brothers Andrew Erwin and Jon Erwin, doesn't do the institution of fatherhood — or...

  • 'Devil's Knot' offers desolate view of West Memphis Three

    'Devil's Knot' offers desolate view of West Memphis Three

    Twenty years after the gruesome murder of three 8-year-old boys in West Memphis, Ark., the crime remains unsolved. The killings and the ensuing miscarriage of justice against three accused teens have hardly gone unexplored, becoming a cause célèbre and the subject of news reports, books and no...

  • 'Cyber-Seniors' is fun look at seniors bridging digital divide

    'Cyber-Seniors' is fun look at seniors bridging digital divide

    Affable and optimistic, the Canadian documentary "Cyber-Seniors" depicts the efforts of enterprising teenagers to get a technology-averse older generation to sign on, log in and start friending. Filmmaker Saffron Cassaday has more than an observer's interest in capturing the retirement crowd getting...

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