In honor of Poetry Month, Guild Cinema resurrects Howard Brookner's 1983 portrait of notorious Beat writer William S. Burroughs. Charting his unique literary style and his wildly unconventional life, this was the first and only feature-length documentary to be made with Burroughs' direct participation. Local poets will be on hand at each screening to present a special poetry reading. 90 minutes Unrated. (Opens Monday 4/20)
This quietly scathing, nihilistic mixture of Gummo and Office Space finds a slacker con artist (Joshua Burge in a performance so deadpan it hurts) working in a dead-end office job. Bored out of his skull, he turns to petty check fraud. When things turn sour, he crashes in the basement of a dweeby coworker (director Joel Potrykus) and starts crafting a Nintendo Power Glove into a replica of Freddy Krueger's weapon of choice. That's when things get weird. 97 minutes Unrated. (Opens Friday 4/17)
A disgraced member of the Soviet military police (played by Bane himself, Tom Hardy) investigates a series of nasty child murders during the Stalin era. Gary Oldman, Noomi Rapace and Joel Kinnaman round out the red-hot, decidedly non-Russian cast. Based on the popular, Girl With the Dragon Tattoo-esque crime novels by Tom Rob Smith. 137 minutes R. (Opens Thursday 4/16)
This much-admired, but little-seen cult comedy from 1985 Canada finds a young director (writer-director-star John Paizs) intent on making "the greatest color crime movie ever"--if only he could work out the script. This odd, stylish and quite loving satire of popular culture, indie filmmaking and general Canadian manners looks something like Repo Man as directed by Douglas Sirk. 80 minutes Unrated. (Opens Monday 4/20)
This no-budget indie comedy (shot in parallel with Ryan Turri's Abe Makes a Movie) is a (fictional?) account of the misadventures of an amateur filmmaker (Estevan Muñoz) hired to shoot behind-the-scenes footage on an indie comedy (the aforementioned Abe Makes a Movie). Cast and crew will be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A. 72 minutes Unrated. (Opens Saturday 4/18)
Arriving in theaters on Monday 4/20 for some strange reason is this 20th anniversary "director's cut" of the porch-centric stoner comedy starring Ice Cube and Chris Tucker. 120 minutes R. (Opens Monday 4/20)
This Steven Spielberg blockbuster about cloned dinosaurs running wild on an island theme park holds up surprisingly well, delivering thrills, chills and straight-up fun after more than 20 years. 127 minutes PG-13. (Opens Thursday 4/23)
This blistering documentary (based on the book by Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway) exposes the history of professional lobbyists, PR firms and pundits-for-hire spin-doctoring the misdeeds of corporate America. Stealing a page (and a lot of the original players) from the tobacco industry's 50-year-long "cigarettes don't cause cancer" campaign, today's prime polluters of big oil and the automobile industry are spending an awful lot of money to convince the world global climate change is a myth. This slick, pithy and ultimately maddening film shows how they do it. 96 minutes PG-13. (Opens Friday 4/17)
DisneyNature's annual Earth Day release concentrates, obviously, on monkeys this year. The focus is on a troop of toque macaques struggling to survive in the ruins of an ancient temple in "the storied jungles of South Asia." Mark Linfield and Alastair Fothergill (Chimpanzee, Bears, African Cats) produce and direct. Tina Fey narrates. Sure, why not? 100 minutes G. (Opens Thursday 4/16)
You brought this on yourself, America. Incompetent but accidentally heroic security guard Paul Blart (Kevin James) goes off on vacation to Las Vegas with his teenage daughter (Raini Rodriguez). But when crime rears its ugly head in the form of a casino heist, the fat dude on the Segway fights back. With wacky slapstick jokes. At least Larry, Moe and Curly had each other to play off of. 94 minutes PG. (Opens Thursday 4/16)
In honor of Earth Day, Guild Cinema presents this breathtaking film from the Planetary Collective, which "brings into focus our connection to all living things on planet Earth." Astronauts, environmentalists, authors, anthropologists, explorers and Tibetan Buddhists are among the people interviewed in this documentary which aims to put environmental, societal, economic and ecological crises in perspective by placing human beings in context to all life on Earth. 84 minutes (Opens Wednesday 4/22)
Turner Classic Movies brings the 1965 Julie Andrews musical back to theaters with a 50th anniversary spit-shine. It's still the second best Hollywood musical ever made about Nazis (third best, if you count Springtime for Hitler). 185 minutes Unrated. (Opens Sunday 4/19)
James Franco and Jonah Hill get all serious for this adaptation of Michael Finkel's memoir about the time the disgraced New York Times reporter (Finkel, played by Hill) met the accused murderer (Christian Longo, played by Franco) who stole his identity. British theater director Rupert Goold makes his film debut with this cold but occasionally gripping debate over ethics and truth. 100 minutes R. (Opens Thursday 4/16)
Century 14 Downtown Fri-Sun 12:00, 2:35, 5:15, 7:45, 10:20; Mon-Thu 12:00, 2:35, 5:15, 7:45 Century Rio Fri-Thu 10:50am, 1:40, 4:30, 7:20, 10:10 High Ridge Fri-Sun 12:20, 3:20, 7:25, 10:10; Mon-Thu 12:20, 3:20, 7:25
For those Millennials who can't tear themselves away from their phones, tablets and computers for one freaking minute comes this unspeakably "contemporary" found-footage horror film that takes place entirely on Skype. Seems that a teenage girl was bullied into committing suicide. One year later, all her social media "friends" find themselves being stalked and murdered, one by one, online. ... And for those of you under the age of 15, don't worry, a Snapchat horror film will be coming at you sooner or later. 100 minutes R. (Opens Thursday 4/16)
Indie wunderkind Noah Baumbach (Kicking and Screaming, The Squid and the Whale, Margot at the Wedding, Francis Ha) dissects two couples: an insecure pair of fortysomething Brooklynites losing touch with their youth (Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts) and a couple of twentysomething hipsters (Adam Driver and Amanda Seyfried) whom they "adopt" as friends. Baumbach has a lot to say about the mismatch in today's generations, and he takes his time doing so, paying attention to the little details. As in previous films, it's Baumbach's mixture of humor and discomfort and his eye for actors that ground this serio-comedy firmly in the real world. 97 minutes R. (Opens Thursda y4/16)
Reliable but rarely more than workmanlike director Clint Eastwood helms this biopic based on the biography of Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle. Bradley Cooper is excellent, running through all the emotions of our main character as he goes from front-line shellshocked to home-front rehabilitated. But Eastwood waffles too much between gung-ho patriotism and a more reasoned examination of the horrors our modern military men and women are asked to endure. It wants to tackle some big moral issues, but unlike Eastwood's Unforgiven, it can't break the Hollywood formula long enough to find the metaphorical weight behind the story. 132 minutes R.
Kenneth Branagh (Henry V, Thor) directs this straight-faced, unironic live-action adaptation of Disney's 1950 animated gem. It looks gorgeous from top to bottom, and Lily James (from "Downton Abbey") seems perfectly appropriate as the ball-going protagonist. But this version adds nothing whatsoever new to the old story. For Disney princess completists only. 113 minutes PG.
Al Pacino stars as an aging musician who has transitioned from Bob Dylan integrity to kitschy, burned-out pop star. When his manager (Christopher Plummer) stumbles across a long-lost, 40-year-old piece of fan mail from John Lennon himself, our hero decides it's time for some late-in-life redemption. He sets off on a cross-country road trip to reunite with the adult son (Bobby Cannavale) he fathered with a groupie, then holes up in suburban New Jersey hoping his songwriting muse will return. Pacino takes this assignment seriously, but writer-director Dan Fogelman (Cars, Bolt, Tangled) veers toward the sitcomish. 106 minutes R.
From the creators of God's Not Dead comes some more preaching to the choir. Like a Jesus-based version of Crash, this film consists of a bunch of random, seemingly unconnected characters (a pastor, a pregnant teenage girl, a nurse, a paramedic, an ex-soldier, a homeless mother, a suicidal young man, a lawyer), all of whose lives are "interconnected by the hand of God." Ted McGinley ("Married with Children"), Sean Astin (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring), Mira Sorvino (Mighty Aphrodite), Delroy Lindo (Get Shorty), Lee Majors ("The Six Million Dollar Man"), Brian Bosworth (former NFL linebacker and star of Stone Cold) and Cybill Shepherd (The Last Picture Show) are among the odd cast. 115 minutes PG-13.
UNM Media Arts instructor Bryan Konefsky presents the 10th annual installment of his epic tribute to experimental films/videos from around the world. Workshops, art installations and more screenings than you can shake a projector at will fill five days (April 15 through 19) at Guild Cinema and beyond. Works from as close as Albuquerque area charter schools and as far away as Pakistan, Hungary, Japan and the Philippines will be screened. Go to experimentsincinema.org for a complete list of films and times.
Every couple of years, the publishing industry spits out an erotic novel to remind housewives that naughty sex is a good thing. From Fanny Hill to Story of O to Fear of Flying to Exit to Eden, these books have been snapped up and hidden in bedside tables for decades. Today, we've got E.L. James' smash hit novel Fifty Shades of Grey. This ripe bit of "mommy porn" started out life as a piece of Twilight fan fic written under the pen name "Snowqueen's Icedragon." The author changed the character names, got a better nom de plume, and the rest is history. The movie may be slightly more literate, but it's sadistically boring. Nothing happens. At some point nothing stops happening and the credits roll. 125 minutes R.
The automotive insult to gravity and various related forms of physics continues, despite the untimely death of star Paul Walker. Vin Diesel, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Ludacris pick up the slack, shooting and/or crashing cars into countless people, places and things. Seems Evil British Guy (Jason Statham) is going after car thief/invincible superhero Dominic Toretto and crew for killing his brother, Evil British Guy From The Last Movie (Luke Evans). 137 minutes PG-13.
Will Ferrell and the clearly overworked Kevin Hart (six films last year and two so far in 2015) star in this racial comedy. Ferrell is millionaire James King, busted for fraud and bound for San Quentin. On the run from police, James ends up in the South Central LA home of family man Darnell Lewis (Hart). Mistaking him for a street thug (because, you know, racial humor), James offers to pay the man to school him in the art of being a gangsta--so he can survive in prison. Needless to say, this mismatched buddy comedy doesn't try very hard. 100 minutes R.
DreamWorks Animation mashes together E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Lilo & Stitch in the hopes that wayward alien mascot Oh (voiced by Jim Parsons from "The Big Bang Theory") will become the next toy/video game/t-shirt-generating machine. It's safe to say he won't. The story, about a misfit alien who befriends a lonely Earth girl (Rihanna), feels awfully recycled. If you're an adult who doesn't find Parsons' voice grating, you might survive a screening with your kids. 94 minutes PG.
The popular young adult book series about a dystopian future in which mean old adults won't let rebellious teens grow up to be whatever they want returns with the second outing in the trilogy (which will, inevitably, turn into four films). Shailene Woodley is back as troublemaking "divergent" Tris, who's obliged to run and fight and take a bunch of tests (no, really) in this predictably rote sequel. 119 minutes PG-13.
In this innovative, flashback-'80s-style horror flick, teenagers who have sex are hunted down by a nameless, faceless and completely unstoppable monster. The only way to fend it off? Pass the curse on to some other poor victim by ... you know, sleeping with them. It sounds outlandish, but writer-director David Robert Mitchell (The Myth of the American Sleepover) has crafted one of the purest, scariest horror films in years with this one. 100 minutes R.
Matthew Vaughn (Layer Cake, X-Men: First Class) directs this fast, funny, impossibly kinetic action flick based on the comic book by Mark Millar (Kick-Ass, Wanted). Newcomer Taron Egerton stars as a trendy British street kid who gets recruited to a top-secret spy agency that's, like, James Bond cranked up to 11. Colin Firth is the young spy's perfectly aloof bad-ass of a trainer. Samuel L. Jackson is the high-tech baddie. 129 minutes R.
Clint Eastwood's studly son Scott Eastwood stars in this extremely Nicholas Sparks-esque adaptation of a Nicholas Sparks novel. Eastwood is a rodeo rider sidelined by injury who falls for a sweet, artsy college girl (Britt Robertson from "Under the Dome"). At some point they rescue an old man (Alan Alda) from an auto accident. The sweet, artsy college girl helps the old dude recover in the hospital by reading a bunch of his love letters from the 1940s. So, yup, we get a flashback-filled B-story in which young Alan Alda (Jack Huston) romances Oona Chaplin (jeez, everybody here is descended someone famous) in picturesque North Carolina. There's a lot of flannel and lakes and romantic picnics. 139 minutes PG-13.
This Disney-produced "based on the inspirational true story" sports flick is pure formula. But it's a formula that works. Kevin Costner is a high school coach exiled to a dirtwater farming community in California. There, he creates a winning cross country running team with some of the ragtag local migrant worker kids. It's all very familiar, but director Niki Caro (Whale Rider) shows considerable sympathy to the impoverished farm workers depicted here. 129 minutes PG.
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel gave audiences the exact dose of twee elderly romance, exotic locals and faintly inuendo-filled comedy they were looking for. So everybody from director (Shakespeare in Love's John Madden) to cast (Dev Patel, Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Bill Nighy) have returned for more of the same. Seems the now successful retirement hotel in Jaipur, India, has only one vacancy left, prompting newcomers (including Richard Gere) to fight for space. 122 minutes PG.
British treasure Helen Mirren stars as Maria Altmann, an octogenarian Jewish refugee who takes on the Austrian government to recover a Gustav Klimt masterpiece stolen by the Nazis during World War II. It's based on a true story. Unfortunately, it's a mostly speech-heavy courtroom drama. And what the hell is Ryan Reynolds (Van Wilder, Green Lantern) doing here playing a Jewish lawyer? 109 minutes PG-13.
Alejandro González Iñárritu (Babel, 21 Grams) directs Michael Keaton (Batman) in this winkingly meta farce about a washed-up action movie star who tries to mount a comeback on Broadway. Shot in what looks like a single, breathless take, the film swoops and soars through the corridors of a venerable Broadway theater watching its manic, self-loathing, hallucination-prone protagonist face crisis after crisis. Dark and funny, cynical and empathetic, this oddly experimental gem offers viewers this year's most original cinematic vision. 119 minutes R.
Kevin Costner stars as a widower lawyer fighting for custody of his biracial granddaughter. Octavia Spencer is the equally righteous paternal grandmother of the little girl, who wants her to be raised by African Americans and not the guy from Dances with Wolves. This is a seriously well-intentioned family drama, but the liberal-minded ideals of writer-director Mike Binder (The Upside of Anger, Reign Over Me) get lost in TV-movie-of-the-week courtroom melodrama. 121 minutes PG-13.
From the writer-director of District 9 and Elysium comes another South Africa-based sci-fi drama. In the near future, Hugh Jackman has built an army of oppressive robot cops to patrol the streets. But a rebellious scientist (Dev Patel) and a couple of street thugs (Ninja and Yo-Landi from Die Antwoord) kidnap one of the robots and reprogram it, teaching it the value of human life. The effects are amazing, but the story is sorely lacking in the sypathetic character department. 120 minutes R.
A young woman (Mae Whitman, "Arrested Development") shakes up the social order of high school after discovering she's been labeled a "DUFF" (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) by her more popular pals. Naturally, this is accomplished though the time-honored magic of the cinematic makeover. As in all Pygmalion-inspired romcoms, this is easily accomplished, since our "fat" and "ugly" heroine is clearly neither. Think John Hughes with hashtags ... and you're trying a lot harder than this formulaic tween comedy is. 101 minutes PG-13.
Sean Penn--hungry for some of that sweet, Liam Neeson-style, old-man-running-around-and-kicking-ass money--hires the director of Taken to give him a career boost. Penn stars in this humorless thriller as a mercenary sniper who assassinates a political bigwig in the Congo. Years later, he's a reformed good guy, who suddenly finds himself the target of an international hit squad. Like a wrinkled Jason Bourne, he hops around the globe trying to figure out who's behind it all. 115 minutes R.
The filmmakers formerly known as the Wachowski brothers (The Matrix, Cloud Atlas) are responsible for this madly over-conceptualized, pulp sci-fi doohickey. Mila Kunis is a poor, Chicago house cleaner who finds out the Earth is just an "estate" built and populated by an ancient alien dynasty--and that she's the long-lost queen of the galaxy. The story is a transparent fairy tale about a missing princess in (frequent) need of rescuing and the dashing knight (Channing Tatum) who protects her from her evil royal family. On top of that familiar framework, the Wachowski siblings have added bits of Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon, Dune, The Matrix, Brazil and The Fifth Element. It's entirely ridiculous, but damned if it isn't eye-poppingly pretty and filled with zippy, zappy entertainment. 127 minutes PG-13.
Ben Stiller and friends (and the monkey) are back in this third outing about wacky hijinks at a natural history museum after the lights go out. Seems the magic that causes all the displays to come to life at night is fading, and our security guard hero (Stiller) must travel the globe, uniting characters old (Robin Willams' Teddy Roosevelt) and new (Dan Stevens' Sir Lancelot) to save it. 97 minutes PG.
The beloved British picture book character gets the requisite CGI makeover for the movies. Ben Whishaw (Skyfall) voices the raincoat-wearing Peruvian bear who ends up lost and alone at a London train station. He gets adopted by a kindly family (led by Hugh Bonneville and Sally Hawkins) and has some episodic adventures. Nicole Kidman plays the villain, an evil taxidermist. Because there has to be a villain in these sorts of things. 95 minutes PG.
Terrorists, criminal kingpins and bad guys in general: When are you going to stop threatening members of Liam Neeson's family? It never ends well for you. Neeson--still in full-on, ass-kicking, old-man mode--stars as a mob hitman who accidentally (sorta) shoots his boss' son. As expected, the boss man (Ed Harris) doesn't take too kindly to the action and pledges to execute our protagonist's offspring (Joel Kinnaman from "The Killing"). Our hitman antihero has just one night to figure out where his loyalties lie and how many people have to die before dawn. Spaniard Jaume Collett-Serra (Orphan, Unknown, Non-Stop) directs this violent action thriller. 114 minutes R.
When the secret formula for Krabby Patties goes missing, SpongeBob and his pals (Patrick, Squidward, Sandy, Mr. Krabs) venture into the real world (featuring a mix of live-action and 3D animation) to recover it from a dastardly pirate (Antonio Banderas ... no, really). Also, they become superheroes. Yeah, SpongeBob doesn't make a lot of sense. But it's awesome. 93 minutes PG.
Movies 8 Fri-Thu 11:30am, 12:50, 2:10, 4:50, 6:10, 7:30, 10:20 Movies West Fri-Thu 12:05, 1:50, 2:35, 5:05, 7:35, 10:05
Josh Gad (Frozen) plays a well-meaning, friendless schlub who hires a fake best man (comedian Kevin Hart) in order to impress his fiancée (Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting) at their wedding. As one does in contrived romantic comedies. 101 minutes R.