Earth Day is coming, and that means Disneynature is back with another cute "family-style" nature documentary. This one is about bears, as you probably already guessed. John C. Reilly narrates. 77 minutes G. (Opens Friday 4/18)
Nasty, blackly comic British crime films (The Hit, Snatch, Sexy Beast, Layer Cake), oh we've missed you! Jude Law is completely off the chain as a sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll-fueled safecracker who gets out of jail after a 12-year stint. He hunts down his old boss (Demian Bichir), looking for a bit of what's owed to him but gets caught between his good (reconnecting with his estranged daughter) and bad (revenge plus money) sides. This bloody hilarious romp plays around with the usual crime film tropes, but is brought to vivid life thanks to Law's savage, tender, totally uninhibited performance. 93 minutes R. (Opens Friday 4/18)
Marlon Wayans, having been booted from the Scary Movie franchise, seems unwilling to give up the ghost. Here he spoofs another grab bag of recent horror movies, including Insidious, Sinister, The Conjuring and, of course, the Paranormal Activity series. Basically this boils down to a lot of "Black people be like ..."/"White people be like ..." jokes. 87 minutes R. (Opens Friday 4/18)
There's a real industry these days preaching to the converted. Here Todd Burpo's questionable but incredibly popular "nonfiction" book heads to the big screen. Greg Kinnear stars as a mild-mannered midwest preacher whose son "dies" on the operating table and returns to life, only to describe Heaven. Clouds and Jesus, you say? Who would have guessed? No one outside the Christian faith will care about this feel-good sermon, but it scores points for at least acknowledging that not all members of the congregation agree on the more abstract points of their religion. 100 minutes PG. (Opens Wednesday 4/16)
The American Institute of Architects presents this documentary about "thinkers, architects and urban planners across the globe" who are questioning our assumptions about modernity and exploring what happens when we put actual human beings at the center of our planning. Part of the AIA Architects in Film series. 77 minutes (Opens Thursday 4/24)
This lovely little drama from India centers around a mixed-up lunchbox delivery that connects a young Mumbai housewife to an older office worker. Saajan (Irrfan Kahn from Slumdog Millionaire) is a government claims worker on the edge of retirement who accidentally intercepts a lunchbox meant for the work-obsessed husband of lonely housewife Ila (Nimrat Kaur). The two begin exchanging letters, which slowly reveal their hopes, dreams and inner lives. Intimate, old-fashioned and slowly paced, the film is part ethnographic study (India's lunchbox delivery system is a marvel of modern living) and part chaste epistolary romance. 104 minutes PG. (Opens Friday 4/18)
This blood-and-booze-soaked horror-comedy comes from the makers of Stiffed and I Heart U. It's a lazy Sunday morning and the usual collection of drunks, losers and lost souls have descended on a seedy downtown bar to drown their troubles. But when a batch of very bad booze is introduced into the mix, this group of unlikely, down-at-the-heels heroes must fight back against a growing horde of mutated, brain-eating maggot creatures. Drink up quick. Because Happy Hour is over! This locally-produced feature stars New Mexico actors Jeremy Owen (Paul), Megan Pribyl (The Lone Ranger), Merritt Glover ("Breaking Bad"), Aaron Worley and Charlie Dearing. Plus, there's a special appearance by Birdemic: Shock and Terror star Whitney Moore. Cast and crew will be in attendance for a post-film Q&A. 95 minutes R. (Opens Friday 4/16)
Cecil B. DeMille's epic 1956 adaptation of the Biblical story of Moses features Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Anne Baxter, Edward G. Robinson, Yvonne De Carlo, Debra Paget, Vincent Price, John Carradine and a whole constellation's worth of Golden Era Hollywood stars. You've seen it every year on TV, but this one was really meant to be seen in theaters. So here's your chance. 220 minutes (Opens Friday 4/18)
Johnny Depp stars as a controversial computer genius who is assassinated by anti-tech radicals just as he's on the verge of constructing a sentient machine. Before dying, however, he goes the full "Max Headroom," downloading his consciousness into a computer. Naturally he uses that as an excuse to go a little power-mad and tries to take over the world. 119 minutes PG-13. (Opens Friday 4/18)
Scarlett Johansson stars in this moody, atmospheric and extremely experimental sci-fi film. Johansson is a seductive space alien (we assume) who wanders around Scotland in a van trying to pick up random men. (The "victims" are not actors, but actual Scotsmen caught on hidden camera by director Jonathan Glazer.) Occasionally our protagonist takes them back to her ramshackle home and sucks the skin off them. Though it sounds a bit like the exploitative 1995 film Species, this curiosity has actually got way more in common with the trippy 1982 cult film Liquid Sky. Slow, inexplicable and highly polarizing, the film's got a strangely feminist parable hiding in there somewhere. 108 minutes R. (Opens Friday 4/18)
Academy Award-winning documentarian Errol Morris (Gates of Heaven, The Thin Blue Line, The Fog of War) points his camera square in the face of former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Instead of interviewing him, Morris has the infamous politician recite and expound on his voluminous "memos." The result is a frustrating yet illuminating look into one man's attempt to elucidate, rationalize, obfuscate and control history. 102 minutes Unrated. (Opens Friday 4/11)
Guild Cinema Fri 3:00, 5:00, 8:00; Sat 11:15 am; Sun 5:30, 8:00; Mon 3:00; Tue-Wed 3:00, 5:30, 8:00
The oil-abbed 2006 hit gets a sequel, complete with different cast and different director. This one's even more fantastical and over-the-top. In this digital-effects-heavy go-around, we've got an epic sea battle waged between an evil/sexy Persian lady (Casino Royale's Eva Green) and some Greek general named Themistokles (Sullivan Stapleton, whoever he is). There's also plenty of flashbacks explaining how weird, bald villain Xerxes came to be in the first movie, but it's rather tangential to all the computer video game-style carnage at hand. 103 minutes R.
This "inspiring" biopic relates the story of New Mexico-trained racehorse Mine That Bird, who defied some big odds to win the 2009 Kentucky Derby. Skeet Ulrich plays the horse's trainer, a misfit cowboy who finds himself on "the journey of a lifetime." This sporting drama was filmed right here in the state where most of the story took place. 110 minutes PG-13.
The First Avenger is back and still trying to acclimate to life outside his native World War II era. Things have changed a bit since the 1940s, and superspy Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) brings in S.H.I.E.L.D. head honcho Alexander Pierce (Robert Redford) to spell out today's tricky, post-Cold War realities. But just when our man Cap (Chris Evans) thinks he's got a handle on it, the past comes knocking in the form of Soviet supervillain the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan). This Bourne Identity-esque sequel manages to balance action-packed thrills and tense political conspiracy. 128 minutes PG-13.
Here's another glum, futuristic love story hoping to beat the YA lit curse (which says if your source material isn't Twilight or Hunger Games, you're going to bomb). Shailene Woodley (The Descendants) stars as a young girl living in near-future Chicago where the population is divided, Hogwarts Sorting Hat-style, into different factions. But our heroine doesn't fit into any of society's five predetermined categories and is labeled a dangerous "Divergent." Rebellion against authority and kissing cute boys ensue. 139 minutes PG-13.
Kevin Costner stars in this largely sports-free sports movie. In it he plays the financially savvy general manager of a pro football franchise, desperate to rebuild his team. But will he keep the number one draft pick or trade the guy to another team for several first-round draft picks spread over the course of the next three seasons? It's the sort of insider dilemma only the most hardcore of football fans might actually care about. In other words: If a cameo by real-life Cleveland Browns CEO Joe Banner doesn't get your juices flowing, just move along. 109 minutes PG-13.
Albuquerque's world-famous, homegrown experimental film festival returns for a ninth (I think) year. From April 14 through 21, various venues around Albuquerque will fill with the sights and sounds of cutting edge media-manipulators from as far away as Iran and South Korea. In addition to the "uncomfortable, unfamiliar and always challenging screenings," programmers have dragged in Greg DeCuir Jr. and Miodrag Milosevic from the Alternative Film/Video Festival in Belgrade, Stephen Kent Jusick of The MIX NY Queer Experimental Film Festival and Spanish filmmaker/curator Antoni Pinent to host their own special presentations. Head to experimentsincinema.com for a compete list of films, workshops, parties and more.
On the first day of college, devout Christian freshman Josh Wheaton (Shane Harper from Disney Channel's "Good Luck Charlie") finds his faith challenged when a dogmatic, smug and argumentative (not to mention atheist) philosophy professor (former Greek god Kevin Sorbo) orders his students to disprove the existence of God or face a failing grade. It's based on Rice Broocks' "how to debate atheists" textbook of the same name. Plus, there's a special appearance by Willie Robertson from "Duck Dynasty"! If you're a member of the choir in the mood for a little preaching to, this is the one for you. 113 minutes PG.
There are stories within stories here, but at the heart of it all, Ralph Fiennes stars as the very particular concierge of a famed European hotel between the wars. He takes on a young apprentice (the wonderfully naive Tony Revolori), sleeps around with a bunch of elderly women (a heavily made-up Tilda Swinton among them) and gets caught up in a crackpot caper involving a dead woman and a stolen painting. Writer-director Wes Anderson's fingerprints are all over this impossibly twee chocolate box painting of a film--but it's also his most mature work, alternately naughty and knowing. F Murray Abraham, Mathieu Amalric, Adrien Brody, Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum, Harvey Keitel, Jude Law, Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Saoirse Ronan, Jason Schwartzman and Owen Wilson round out the ensemble cast. 99 minutes R.
The classic Jay Ward cartoon "Peabody's Improbable History" (featured on the old "Rocky & Bullwinkle Show") gets its own CGI spin-off. Ty Burrell (from "Modern Family") voices the brilliant canine inventor while Max Charles (from "The Neighbors") voices his nerdy adopted son. In order to impress a neighbor girl, Sherman "borrows" dad's time machine and accidentally unleashes chaos throughout history. Leonardo da Vinci, Mona Lisa, Albert Einstein and Agamemnon drop by, giving guest stars Lake Bell, Stanley Tucci, Mel Brooks and Patrick Warburton something to do. 91 minutes PG.
Darren Aronofsky (Requiem for a Dream, Black Swan) employs Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly and Anthony Hopkins to tackle the biblical story of Noah. You know, the one with the marauding four-armed giants, the massive invading armies, the scheming supervillains and the apocalyptic visuals. (OK, that last one might actually be in The Bible.) Like all Aronofsky films, it looks amazing, filled with cosmic craziness and symbolic potency. But the polarizing story takes a lot of liberties with the original narrative, crash-landing it somewhere between The Last Temptation of Christ and The Lord of the Rings. 137 minutes PG-13.
Karen Gillan ("Doctor Who") and Brenton Thwaites (Blue Lagoon: The Awakening) star as a brother and sister who have spent their lives searching for a haunted mirror that allegedly possessed their father and resulted in the murder of their mother. They find it, but instead of destroying it , they set out to scientifically prove the crimes of the past were committed by supernatural phenomenon. That's probably a bad idea. This quiet, slow-burning indie earns its scares and increases the number of "haunted mirror" movies to at least six (including Dead of Night, From Beyond the Grave, The Boogey Man, Haunted by Her Past and Mirrors). That's almost big enough for a new category on Netflix. 105 minutes R.
The nonstop, balls-out Indonesian action flick The Raid was simply begging for a sequel. Three years later writer-director Gareth Evans and star Iko Uwais have capitulated to fans, delivering another insanely action-packed martial arts juggernaut. This time Jakarta cop Rama (Uwais) goes undercover to bust a crime syndicate. Eventually, of course, our hero is required to fight every single person in the city. 150 minutes R.
History Channel's mini-series "The Bible"--produced by Roma Downey ("Touched by an Angel") and Mark Burnett ("Survivor")--gets hacked from 10 hours to 2 hours so that evangelicals without cable can watch it in theaters. Think The Passion of the Christ, only with less blood and anti-semitism. 138 minutes PG-13.
Picking up where the "kick-ass old dudes" genre hallmark of Taken and Taken 2 left off, Kevin Costner stars as an aging Secret Service agent just trying to be a family man to his estranged family. Retired and facing a terminal illness, our hero is offered an experimental drug that might save his life. In exchange he's given the titular play on words--a short-term assignment to hunt down "the world's most dangerous terrorist." Luc Besson (The Transporter, Taken) wrote it, McG (Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, This Means War) directed it. So ... lotsa things blow up. 117 minutes PG-13.
This wonderful CG cartoon--a loose adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's "The Snow Queen"--is Disney's most Disney film in ages. It's an unapologetic, old-school musical filled with funny sidekicks and not one but two princesses. Kristen Bell ("Veronica Mars") holds her own as the plucky Nordic princess trying to help her winter-conjuring sister. But Broadway baby Idina Menzel is a force to be reckoned with at the terrified young woman with the snow-throwing powers. Josh Gad (The Book of Mormon) steals all the laughs as a talking snowman with a sunny disposition. 108 minutes PG.
Movies 8 Fri-Thu 11:00 am, 1:50, 4:40, 7:30, 10:20 Movies West Fri-Thu 11:55 am, 2:40, 5:25, 8:10
Alfonso Cuarón (Y Tu Mamá También, Children of Men, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban) directs this heavy-duty thriller about a medical engineer and an astronaut (Sandra Bullock, George Clooney) working frantically to save themselves after an accident leaves them spinning hopelessly adrift through space. A technical jaw-dropper and a white-knuckle survival tale, this one will take your breath away in many ways. 90 minutes PG-13.
Mark Wahlberg stars in this blunt, true-life, Saving Private Ryan-esque war drama about four members of SEAL Team 10 who participated in a spectacularly failed mission to capture a notorious Taliban leader. The film, depicting the explosive chaos of the crumbling mission, is rather frenzied. But it's got a tense, life-during-wartime intensity to it. It was shot in New Mexico, which may explain why the mountains of Afghanistan look so damn familiar. 121 minutes R.
George Clooney directs this based-on-a-true-story action drama about a World War II platoon assigned the unlikely task of rescuing great works of European art from the hands of Nazi thieves. Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, John Goodman and Jean Dujardin star. If only the script were more "movie"-like and less "history lecture"-like. 118 minutes PG-13.
A bunch of city park-dwelling squirrels plot an Ocean's Eleven-style caper to rob a nut store. Will Arnett, Brendan Fraser, Liam Neeson, Katherine Heigl, Maya Rudolph, Jeff Dunham and Gabriel Iglesias are among the voicecast of this CGI feature. It comes to us from the makers of the Canadian-South Korean cartoon series "Bolts and Blip." It's the most expensive South Korean co-produced animated film in history. So there's that. 86 minutes PG.
Squeaky, hyperactive comedian Kevin Hart--who I believe dispatched Chris Tucker in one of those Highlander-style "There can be only one" deals several years ago--stars alongside Ice Cube in this basic mismatched buddy cop comedy. Hart plays a motor-mouthed security guard engaged to marry the sister of tough-guy Atlanta Police detective Ice Cube. Cube tries to scare him off with a 24-hour ride along--during which, of course, they fight bad guys and bond. 100 minutes PG-13.
Movies 8 Fri-Thu 11:20 am, 2:00, 4:50, 7:40, 10:30
This grim-faced reboot of Paul Verhoeven's hyperbolically violent, wonderfully subversive action movie parody from 1987 loses the original's sense of humor and most of its reason for being. Brazilian director José Padilha (Elite Squad) works up some decent tension, but the script is less of an adrenalized cop movie and more of a mouthy rumination on the ethics of allowing multinational security firms to turn dead cops into superpowered cyborgs. 108 minutes PG-13.