MOVIES

Aug. 21-27 Movies Calendar

What's showing at area theaters

Sarah Polley directs “Stories We Tell,” examining a family of storytellers and their version of the truth, at Sun-Ray Cinema in Five Points.
Roadside Attractions
Cecil (Forest Whitaker) is a fly on the wall of presidential history, serving in the White House under eight administrations in “Lee Daniels’ The Butler.”
The Weinstein Company
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4 stars  SLEEPER

3 stars  SMALL TIME CROOKS

2 stars  THE CURSE OF THE JADE SCORPION

1 star  WHATEVER WORKS

 

NOW SHOWING

2 GUNS

2 1/2 stars • Rated R

Marcus Stigman (Mark Wahlberg) and Bobby Trench (Denzel Washington) have been working for the government for more than a year to infiltrate a dangerous drug cartel. Unwillingly, they’re forced to team up when their mission goes awry. Their respective government agencies deny their existence, so they strike back at the gangsters who want them dead. Directed by Baltasar Kormákur.

 

BLACKFISH

3 stars • Rated PG-13

Gabriela Cowperthwaite directed the eye-opening, harrowing documentary about Tilikum, a 12,000-pound killer whale captured as a 2-year-old in 1983 who grew to be 22 feet long. In 2010, at a “Dine with Shamu” show at SeaWorld Orlando, Tilikum brutally killed chief trainer Dawn Brancheau in front of at least a dozen spectators. The tragedy spawned an investigation and subsequent court case, and now a film.

 

BLUE JASMINE

3 stars • Rated PG-13 • Opens Aug. 23

Reviewed in this issue.

 

CHENNAI EXPRESS

3 stars • Not Rated

A young man wants to honor his grandfather, whose last wish was to have his ashes strewn in the waters of the holy city of Rameshwaram. The Bollywood hit stars Deepika Padukone and Shah Rukh Khan. In Hindi and Tamil.

 

THE CONJURING

2 1/2 stars • Rated R

Lorraine (Vera Farmiga) and her husband Ed (Patrick Wilson) have investigated paranormal occurrences a long time, but when they get called to a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere, they encounter their most horrifying case. A family desperately needs help before violent ghosts destroy them.

 

CRYSTAL FAIRY

3 stars • Unrated

Jamie (Michael Cera) is a young American who takes two younger brothers, his Chilean friend Champa and a stranger who goes by the name Crystal Fairy (Gaby Hoffmann) on a trip to Chile. A road-trip comedy in search of the San Pedro cactus, a rare hallucinogen, is bound to include some surprises.

 

DESPICABLE ME 2

2 1/2 stars • Rated PG

Gru (voiced by Steve Carell) is back as a heinous villain who becomes a spy. Gru morphs from villain to dad to raise three adopted daughters, hitting the dating scene to find a suitable mom. Three Minions (voiced by co-director Pierre Coffin) again steal the whole thing.

 

ELYSIUM

3 stars • Rated R

The year is 2154, and Earth, where the 99 percenters live, is a mess. The air is polluted and garbage is everywhere. Meanwhile, the aristocrats live on Elysium, a circular spaceship oasis just outside Earth’s atmosphere. It’s a perfect, idyllic structure, made to look like the paradises of yesteryear. Max (Matt Damon) is planning to take down Elysium and bring equality to Earth in the dystopian sci-fi from director Neill Blomkamp (“District 9”).

 

FRUITVALE STATION

4 stars • Rated R

It’s the true story of Oscar Grant (Oscar-worthy Michael B. Jordan) who was killed in an altercation with police at Fruitvale, a BART stop in San Francisco’s Bay Area on New Year’s Eve 2008. Grant died just as he was making resolutions to turn his life around. Co-starring Octavia Spencer and Chad Michael Murray.

 

GHOST GRADUATION

2 stars • Rated R

Despite the fact that they're dead, a gaggle of teens want to graduate from high school, so a teacher blessed — and cursed — with paranormal skills helps them reach their goal. In Spanish.

 

GROWN UPS 2

1 star • Rated PG-13

Lenny (Adam Sandler) learns crazy follows everywhere when he moves his family back to his hometown to be with friends Marcus (David Spade), Kurt (Chris Rock) and Eric (Kevin James). The four adults relive the last day of school through their kids’ experiences.

 

THE HEAT

1 1/2 stars • Rated R

Uptight FBI Special Agent Sarah Ashburn (Sandra Bullock) and foul-mouthed Boston cop Shannon Mullins (Melissa McCarthy) are thrown off a case involving a ruthless drug lord, the pair decides to go after him on their own – checking off one of many buddy-cop clichés.

 

JOBS

2 stars • Rated PG-13

The biopic examines how Steve Jobs (Ashton Kutcher), an entrepreneur and innovator way ahead of his time, built Apple into the most prolific company in the world. Directed by Joshua Michael Stern, “Jobs” also stars Dermot Mulroney, Josh Gad (as Steve Wozniak), Lukas Haas, Matthew Modine and J.K. Simmons.

 

KICK-ASS 2

2 stars • Rated R

Having inspired other folks to dress like superheroes and fight crime, Dave/Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) is bored. Mindy/Hit-Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) promises her guardian (Morris Chestnut) she'll behave after a close encounter, so Dave's on his own. He goes online and looks for a vigilante group to join. Born-again Christian Col. Stars & Stripes (Jim Carrey) is happy to have Kick-Ass, Dr. Gravity (Donald Faison), Night Bitch (Lindy Booth) and Battle Guy (Clark Duke), among others, dispatching justice. Their bond is tested when Chris (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), aka Red Mist, takes on a new arch villain persona — The Motherfucker — and forms an injustice league to take down Kick-Ass.

 

LEE DANIELS’ THE BUTLER

2 stars • Rated PG-13

Forest Whitaker plays Cecil Gaines, the White House butler who served eight U.S. presidents over three decades, witnessing many of the 20th century’s biggest moments, in Lee Daniels’ latest biopic after the success of “Precious.” The all-star cast runs deep with James Marsden as John F. Kennedy, Minka Kelly as Jackie Kennedy, Alan Rickman as Ronald Reagan, Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan, John Cusack as Richard Nixon and Robin Williams as Dwight Eisenhower. Really? Ike is Robin Williams? Also starring Oprah Winfrey, Mariah Carey, Vanessa Redgrave, Cuba Gooding Jr., Terrence Howard and Liev Schreiber.

 

THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS: CITY OF BONES

Rated PG-13 • Opens Aug. 21

This fantasy-adventure film co-stars Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower, Jemima West and Jonathan Rhys Meyers (aka Henry the Eighth).

 

ONCE UPON A TIME IN DUBAI — DOBAARA

Not Rated

This Bollywood thriller stars Akshay Kumar.

 

PACIFIC RIM

3 stars • Rated PG-13

With millions of lives lost and resources depleted, the war continues against giant monsters that rose from the seas. Two unlikely heroes must drive a legendary but seemingly obsolete Jaeger, a massive robot that was a special weapon in the past. The action-adventure is directed by Guillermo del Toro.

 

PARANOIA

1 1/2 stars • Rated PG-13

Corporate espionage, jillion-dollar deals and high-tech geniuses abound in this tepid thriller co-starring Harrison Ford, Gary Oldman, Liam Hemsworth and Amber Heard.

 

PERCY JACKSON: SEA OF MONSTERS

2 stars • Rated PG

The sequel opens with Percy (Logan Lerman), Annabeth (Alexandra Daddario) and Grover (Brandon T. Jackson) living at Camp Half-Blood, the only place where demigods can exist in peace. Or so they think. They’re forced on an adventure to recover the Golden Fleece, which is located in – you guessed it – the Sea of Monsters (aka the Bermuda Triangle).

 

PLANES

2 stars • Rated PG

Watching this Disney movie, you quickly realize you liked it better the first and second times you saw it when it was called “Cars,” then “Cars 2.” “Planes” was made by DisneyToon Studios, which ordinarily works on straight-to-video sequels such as “Tarzan II” and “Cinderella III: A Twist in Time.” The film, only moderately and occasionally funny, does offer a nice message of believing you can do more than what you think you’re capable of, but “Planes” sputters when it needs to soar.

 

RED 2

3 stars • Rated PG-13

Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) is retired from his busy days as a black-ops CIA operative, but he’s getting the old gang back together one more time. That’s Marvin (John Malkovich) and Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker) and they’re all up against hired killers, terrorists and powerful government honchos as they try to keep a purloined nuclear device from falling into the wrong hands. Co-starring Catherine Zeta-Jones, Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren.

 

R.I.P.D.

1 1/2 stars • Rated PG-13

Hot shot detective Nick Walker (Ryan Reynolds) was killed in the line of duty, so he’s now eligible to join the Rest in Peace Department. New partner Roy (Jeff Bridges) is a veteran sheriff with a knack for spotting a fugitive soul in disguise.

 

SMURFS 2

1 1/2 stars • Rated PG

At it again, the Smurfs enter the humans’ world to help Smurfette (Katy Perry) escape Gargamel (Hank Azaria). Gargamel created the Naughties to help him harness Smurf-essence, but he learns the only way to get it is with a spell only Smurfette knows.

 

STORIES WE TELL

3 stars • Rated PG-13

Sarah Polley directs the docudrama that examines truth and how a family of storytellers reveals their secrets while telling different versions of their history. The film aims to get at the “elusive nature of truth and memory.”

 

TURBO

2 stars • Rated PG

Theo, a garden snail (voiced by Ryan Reynolds) suffers a freak accident that turns fortunate – he might now be so fast, he could win the Indy 500. Co-starring Samuel L. Jackson, Bill Hader, Snoop Lion and Maya Rudolph.

 

THE WAY, WAY BACK

3 stars • Rated PG-13

Duncan (Liam James) is a 14-year-old too awkward to fit in until he meets a few adults who bring him into adulthood. After his mom drags him away from home to live at her boyfriend’s beach house for the summer, he begins working at a waterpark. Here Duncan meets some folks who help him be less of an outcast during the roughest teenage years and transform him into a man.

 

WE’RE THE MILLERS

3 stars • Rated R

Small-time drug dealer David (Jason Sudeikis) uses the “perfect family” façade after he’s offered $100,000 to bring back “a little bit” of weed from Mexico. The perfect family includes stripper Rose (Jennifer Aniston), likable latchkey teenager Kenny (Will Poulter) and homeless teen Casey (Emma Roberts). Sudeikis delivers great one-liners and Aniston unfurls another edgy/sexy/funny performance in the same vein as her role in “Horrible Bosses.”

 

THE WOLVERINE

3 stars • Rated PG-13

Logan (Hugh Jackman) learns that being a warrior without a cause isn’t what it’s cracked up to be. When he gets called to Japan, he begins a journey to face his own mortality.

 

THE WORLD'S END

2 stars • Rated R • Opens Aug. 22 at Sun-Ray Cinema

Five drinking buddies tried to complete a pub crawl — 20 years on, they try again, but this time, their quest is hampered by the fact that they have to stop and save the world in between quaffing pints. Co-starring Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Paddy Considine, Martin Freeman, Eddie Marsan and Rosamund Pike.

 

WORLD WAR Z

2 stars • Rated PG-13

Aggressive zombies are multiplying fast. Why isn’t explained, which is annoying, but not as much as seeing former U.N. investigator Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt), wife Karen (Mireille Enos) and daughters (Sterling Jarins, Abigail Hargrove) get special government attention in the crisis.

 

OTHER FILMS

PLAYIN’ HOOKY WITH SUN-RAY

To celebrate a new film by Simon Pegg, Edgar Wright and Nick Frost, a marathon is screened; "Shaun of the Dead" 6 p.m., "Hot Fuzz" 8 p.m. and the new "The World's End" 10:30 p.m. Aug. 22 at Sun-Ray Cinema, 1028 Park St., Five Points, 359-0047, sunraycinema.com.

 

NIGHT OWL CINEMA

The free series concludes with “Oz: The Great and Powerful,” 8 p.m. Aug. 23 at St. Augustine Amphitheatre, 1340 A1A S. Parking’s free on movie nights; concessions available. 209-0367, staugamphitheatre.com.

 

SUMMER MOVIE CLASSICS

The annual series continues with Frank Capra's “It Happened One Night,” starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert, screened 2 p.m. Aug. 25 at The Florida Theatre, 128 E. Forsyth St., Downtown, 355-2787. Tickets are $7.50; $45 for a movie card. floridatheatre.com

 

WORLD GOLF HALL OF FAME IMAX THEATRE

“Elysium: The IMAX Experience” is screened along with “The Last Reef 3D” and “Flight of the Butterflies 3D” at World Golf Hall of Fame Village IMAX Theatre, 1 World Golf Place, St. Augustine, 940-IMAX, worldgolfimax.com. “Great White Shark 3D” and “Tornado Alley 3D” open Aug. 23.

 

LATITUDE CINEGRILLE

“Man of Steel” is showing at Latitude 30 CineGrille, 10370 Philips Highway, Southside, 365-5555.

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