Movie Review

Spy is not just another spy spoof, a genre which I tired of quite some time ago. Spy is more lighthearted and less plot-oriented than most, and since it stars Melissa McCarthy, it can't get too close to James Bond imitations.

San Andreas is definitely of the school of Mad Max and The Avengers and Furious 7: all action and no acting.

But it is a good deal better than I expected, largely because it has better characterizations and no hackneyed human villainy. In fact, it has not human villainy at all--all the violence and destruction are acts of unassisted nature.

    

Far from the Madding Crowd is a historical love story that respects Victorian England more than one might expect-- at no time does Carey Mulligan, in a remarkably fine performance, suggest a 20th-century heroine, which is the more remarkable in that she is a sort of early feminist.

Wild Tales is two things that are rare on the big screen, at least in Wichita: a feature made up of short stories and a subtitled movie, in Spanish from Argentina. But it leaves today, which is too bad, because it's really interesting, although not notably exciting, because the short-story format doesn't allow for much emotional buildup.

  The D Train starts out looking like a good deal of chuckle-type fun and maybe even some laughs out loud-- nothing particularly original, but an enjoyable reworking of material that is familiar but always entertaining.

To be fair, let's start by admitting that Avengers: Age of Ultron is not my kind of movie, and I went to it only because nothing else opened last Friday. And it was pretty much what I expected and almost exactly what a lot of people will want.

Ex Machina is interesting throughout, considerably more believable than most artificial-intelligence movies, but a little hard to review without giving away too much. So let me start by just warning you not to assume you know what's coming until it's already come and gone, and even then you may not know why it happened.

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I'm neither embarrassed nor afraid of spoilers when I admit that I didn't understand everything that went on in the new Jonah Hill and James Franco movie True Story, because I don't think I was supposed to understand it all.

Danny Collins is a thoroughly enjoyable comedy-drama made exceptional by a remarkably restrained performance by the usually over-the-top Al Pacino.

He plays an aging rock star whose style has become so outdated that his sellout audiences feature expanding waistlines, bald heads and grey hair, and at one point it is suggested that his audience is too old to be out as late as 9 p.m.

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Even people who have had driver's licenses long enough to think of cars as transportation instead of thrill rides might get a kick out of the sheer preposterousness of the latest Fast and Furious movie.

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