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Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

The popular chidren's book gets turned into a madcap comedy in which an unlucky boy transfers his bad juju to his hapless family for a single day. Steve Carell and Jennifer Garner are on mom and dad duty. There isn't a lot of depth to be found here--mostly just a string of chaotic set-pieces--but director Miguel Arteta (Chuck & Buck, The Good Girl) adds just enough honest-to-goodness social awkwardness to give it a bit of gravity. 81 minutes PG.
Movies 8
Movies West


The Book of Life

Guillermo del Toro (Pan's Labyrinth, Hellboy) produces this candy-coated, fiesta-colored cartoon. In it, two small-town pals (Diego Luna and Channing Tatum) battle for the heart of their childhood sweetheart (Zoe Saldana)--spurned on by a pair of cosmic entities, the angelic La Muerte and the demonic Xibalba. The film's complicated mythology borrows a lot from Mexico's Dia de los Muertos tradition. The result--a sort of reverse Orpheus and Eurydice--is probably too dark for the youngest kids. But this original, unpredictable toon is a vivid seasonal treat for the rest of us. FULL REVIEW: Mexican-themed cartoon offers unexpected seasonal treats by Devin D. O’Leary (10/16/2014). 95 minutes PG.
Movies 8
Movies West

The Book of Life 3D

Movies 8
Movies West

Boyhood

Filmmaker Richard Linklater (Slacker, Dazed and Confused, Before Sunrise) spent 12 years--off and on--shooting this coming-of-age tale. Instead of being gimmicky, the film is comfortingly real and quietly observational. We simply watch as Mason (Ellar Coltrane) grows from age 5 to age 18 and experiences all that life throws at him. His parents (Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke) are divorced, and he drifts from video games to ogling lingerie catalogues to dealing with awful stepparents to navigating high school. The free-flowing narrative never tries to impose a "story" on the proceedings--and yet it's never dull. Instead, it's a lesson in regression for audiences as they recall all the funny, sad, rough, joyous, confusing moments that make up pre-adulthood. 165 minutes R.
High Ridge

Dracula Untold

Universal has decided to reboot all of its classic "Universal Monsters" films, starting with their chief bloodsucker. Unfortunately somebody at the studio thought he needed one of those "boring superhero origin story" movies. Here we find out how good-guy Vlad Tepes (Luke Evans from Fast & Furious 6) became a vampire to fight off invading Turks. This one's perfect for people who felt Bram Stoker's classic tale needed to look a lot more like 300. 92 minutes PG-13.
Movies 8
Movies West

Gone Girl

David Fincher (Fight Club, Se7en) directs this gripping adaptation of Gillian Flynn's twisty crime novel about a man who comes under intense media scrutiny after his wife disappears. Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Tyler Perry and Neil Patrick Harris star. 148 minutes R.
Movies 8

Horrible Bosses 2

Jason Bateman, Charlie Day and Jason Sudeikis return for more criminal hijinks--but this time around, they appear to be the horrible bosses. Unable to get their new business off the ground thanks to a slick investor, the trio plot a harebrained kidnapping scheme. Jennifer Aniston and Kevin Spacey drop by to help. 108 minutes R.
Movies 8
Movies West

Nightcrawler

Jake Gyllenhaal (Donnie Darko, Brokeback Mountain) stars in this grim crime thriller-cum-satire as a sleazy hustler who worms his way into the underground world of freelance crime reporting. Armed with a video camera and a total lack of ethics, he prowls LA's dark streets looking for any stories that bleed so he can sell them to content-hungry local networks. The film has a lot of scathing things to say about today's voyeuristic culture, but it's also a tense, Taxi Driver-ish thriller. 117 minutes R.
Movies West

Ouija

Hasbro and Universal Pictures have already made Transformers and Battleship into mind-numbing multimillion-dollar action movies. So why not turn Ouija into a cheap ghost drama? A bunch of teens use an "ancient spirit board" to "awaken the dark powers." You know what happens next. 90 minutes PG-13.
Movies 8
Movies West

Penguins of Madagascar

Following cameos in the Madagascar films and a successful TV series, the wannabe-super-spy penguins get their own feature spin-off. This CGI toon shows audiences how dimwitted waterfowl Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private got their start in the global espionage biz. 92 minutes PG.
Movies 8
Movies West

Penguins of Madagascar 3D

Movies 8
Movies West
Times and listings are for Friday 1/23 through Thursday 1/29
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