‘Ash is the Purest White,’ ‘Sorry Angel’ and more movie picks for March 22

Zhao Tao in the film "Ash is the Purest White."
Zhao Tao in the film “Ash is the Purest White.”
(Cohen Media Group)

Movie recommendations from critics Justin Chang (J.C.) and Kenneth Turan. In general release unless otherwise noted.

Ash Is Purest White Zhao Tao gives a superb performance in this deeply moving, years-spanning gangster love story from writer-director Jia Zhangke (“Still Life,” “Mountains May Depart”), peerless chronicler of life in a rapidly changing modern China. (J.C.) NR Limited

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

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 Kid Who Would Be King A 12-year-old boy (Louis Ashbourne Serkis) gets pulled into a grand Arthurian adventure in this endearing, winningly offbeat comic fantasy from writer-director Joe Cornish (“Attack the Block”). (J.C.) PG Limited

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 Cuarón, whose childhood experiences are the bedrock of this family story. (K.T.) R Netflix

Sorry Angel Set during the AIDS crisis in ‘90s France, Christophe Honoré's film is a superbly acted and swooningly intelligent romance between two men (Pierre Deladonchamps and Vincent Lacoste) looking at life and love in opposite directions. (J.C.) NR Limited

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.T.) R Encore version with 12 extra minutes now in theaters

Transit Adapted from Anna Seghers’ 1944 novel about a World War II refugee, but hauntingly suspended between past and present, this latest drama from the German director Christian Petzold (“Phoenix”) is a quietly extraordinary tale of refugee experiences, then and now. (J.C.) NR Limited


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