Entertainment

Films opening this week in Bellingham include Student Film Festival at Pickford

OPENING THIS WEEK

1st Annual Documentary Center Student Film Festival

Not rated; 60 minutes. Presentations from this year’s Documentary Center students.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 5 (Sat)


The 78 Project Movie

Not rated; 96 minutes. Each musician gets to use a 1930s PRESTO direct-to-disc recorder to make their disk that defies space and time.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 2 (Sat)


Afternoon of a Fawn

Not rated; 91 minutes. Documentary follows the life of ballerina Tanaquil Le Clercq, who became the prototype for the modern dancer, married George Balachine and was forced from dancing after being struck by polio at age 27.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 11 a.m. (Sun)


Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case

Not rated; 86 minutes. Film chronicles Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s battle against the Chinese government and the onslaught of media and art world stars after his imprisonment.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 6:30 (Mon)


All This Mayhem

Not rated; 96 minutes. The film looks at the success and eventual downturn of skakeboarding stars and brothers Tas and Ben Pappas after their drug use spins out of control.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 6:30 (Sun)


Annabelle

R, intense sequences of disturbing violence, terror; 98 minutes. A young couple in the 1960s expecting their first child is terrorized after one of the wife’s antique dolls is haunted by a woman who was part of a slaughter at a neighboring home. Annabelle Wallis, Ward Horton, Alfre Woodward, Tony Amendola.

* *  Like “Insidious” and “The Conjuring,” the only goal here is to raise the hairs on the back of your neck. And “Annabelle” does, more than once, before that dolly is done. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 1:10, 4, 7, 9:40

RPX: 12:10, 2:40, 5:10, 7:40, 10:10


The Dog

Not rated; 100 minutes. A documentary about John Wojtowicz, who robbed a Brooklyn bank to finance his lover’s sex-reassignment surgery and was the real-life inspiration for “Dog Day Afternoon.”

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 6:30 (Tue)


The Expedition to the End of the World

Not rated; 90 minutes. Danish expedition to the last uncharted areas of the globe is documented is this film.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 6:30 (Thu)


Finding Fela

Not rated; 119 minutes. Film follows the life of Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s life as a musician and how he used his Afrobeat movement to express his political opinions about the dictatorial Nigerian government in the 1970s and ’80s.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 4 (Sun)


Gone Girl

R, scene of bloody violence, some strong sexual content, nudity, language; 149 minutes. After a man’s wife disappears, he becomes the center of a huge media frenzy and suspicions that he is involved in her disappearance. Ben Affleck, Rosamond Pike, Neil Patrick Harris.

* * *  It’s good, but we’ve come to expect more from the guy who gave us “Fight Club” and “The Social Network.” — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: (Fri-Sat) 12, 3:20, 5:50, 6:40, 9:25, 10:05

(Sun): 12, 3:20, 6, 9:20


Left Behind

PG-13, some thematic elements, violence/peril, brief drug content; 110 minutes. As people start mysteriously disappearing, those remaining on Earth have to deal with the loss and the difficulties that result from the lost. Nicolas Cage, Cassi Thomson, Chad Michael Murry.

* 1/2 “Left Behind” is a Rapture-fiction as a dull zombie movie where the living dead are non-believers. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 1:40, 4:30, 7:10, 9:55


Makers: Women in Hollywood

Not rated; 59 minutes. Film celebrates the female movers and shakers in Hollywood.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 5:30 (Tue)


No No: A Dockumentary

Not rated; 100 minutes. Film looks at the pitching of Dock Ellis, who threw a no-hitter for the Pittsburgh Pirates while high on LSD.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 1:30 (Sun)


Pelican Dreams

G; 80 minutes. Film looks at pelicans, known as “flying dinosaurs,” and ask questions about the need for wildness in our lives and how we can protect it.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 12 (Sat), 6:30 (Fri)


Pump

PG; 88 minutes. Documentary looks at how America became addicted to oil and how we can clearly and simply end the monoply of oil in our lives.

No critical review available.

Playing: Limelight

Times: 2:15 (Sun-Tue, Thu), 3:15 (Sat), 6:20 (Wed), 6:30 (Fri), 8 (Sun-Tue, Thu), 8:35 (Wed), 9 (Fri-Sat)


Return of the River

Not rated; 69 minutes. Film documents the largest dam removal project in the history of the country on the Elwha River and efforts to restore the river’s eco-system.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 6:30 (Sat)


This Ain’t No Mouse Music

Not rated; 92 minutes. Music icon Chris Strachwitz crosses the country looking for music that is the soul of the country.

No critical review available.

Playing: Pickford

Times: 6:30 (Wed)


A Will for the Woods

Not rated; 93 minutes. A man prepares for his own green burial, his last gift to the planet.

No critical review available.

Playing: Limelight

Times: 4 (Wed)

Ongoing

Boyhood

R, language including sexual references, and for teen drug and alcohol use; 163 minutes. A groundbreaking story of growing up as seen through the eyes of a child named Mason, who literally grows up on screen before our eyes. Ellar Coltrane, Patricia Arquette, Lorelei Linklater, Ethan Hawke.

* * * *  “Boyhood” is too bloody long, but it’s hard to think of good places to cut. Every campout scene / teens-riding-in-cars momentis at least interesting, and they all create the texture of the times and that stage in someone’s life. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Limelight

Times: 11 a.m. (Sun), 12 (Sat), 12:30 (Wed), 3 (Fri), 4:30 (Sun-Tue, Thu), 5:30 (Sat)


The Boxtrolls

PG, action, some peril, mild rude humor; 97 minutes. A group of trolls living in abandoned cardboard boxes find their lives threatened by angry town residents, except for a young woman who wants to know more about the creatures. Voiced by Ben Kingsley, Elle Fanning, Jared Harris, Toni Collette, Nick Frost.

* * * 1/2 This adaptation of an Alan Snow novel is inventive and fanciful and almost certainly the best animated film of the year. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 1:30, 4:20, 6:50, 9:15

3D: 11:50 a.m.


Dolphin Tale 2

PG, some mild thematic elements; 104 minutes. Winter the dolphin loses his companion at the aquarium and the staff has to deal with the loss Winter faces and efforts to close down the facility. Nathan Gamble, Ashley Judd, Harry Connick, Jr., Morgan Freeman.

* * “Dolphin Tale 2 will hold the interest of its youngest viewers while it teaches, which is all any parent can hope for from a kids’ film. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 1:20, 3:50, 6:35, 9:05


The Equalizer

R, strong bloody violence, language throughout; 131 minutes. Denzel Washington plays a retired secret agent who uses his skills to protect and ward of the thugs and thieves who threaten friends and co-workers he has met in his retirement. Washington, Chloe Grace Moretz, Marton Csokas.

* * 1/2 “The Equalizer” serves up Denzel Washington at his coolest. Eyes weary with experience but still taking it all in .... he still carries himself with that feline stride — the greatest, most masculine movie star walk since John Wayne. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 12:20, 3:30, 6:30, 9:35

IMAX: 1, 4:10, 7:20, 10:20


Frank

R, language and some sexual content; 100 minutes. A young man who writes songs finds his life forever changed with an encounter with a wild singer/songwriter who wears a plastic head over his skull. Domhnall Gleeson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Michael Fassbender.

* * * “Frank” feels like a “festival film,” aimed squarely at one festival, the one that is the setting of its third act. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Pickford

Times: 8:45 (Fri, Sun-Thu), 9:15 (Sat)


The Giver

PG-13, mature thematic image, some sci-fi action/violence; 94 minutes. A young man in a future utopian society starts to discover there is more to life, both past and future, than the regemented “sameness” of his community. Brenton Thwaites, Jeff Bridges, Odeya Rush, Meryl Streep.

* * ½ While “The Giver” scores points for being smarter and deeper than “The Hunger Games” or its inferior photo-copy (“Divergent”), coming after all those other versions of this plot does neither it, nor us, any favors. “The Giver” has nothing new to offer. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 2:10 (not Sun), 4:40, 7:05, 9:30


Guardians of the Galaxy

PG-13, intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, some language; 121 minutes. An Amercian pilot finds himself to be the target of a manhunt after he claims an orb from the vengeful Ronan. Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, John C. Reilly.

* * *  They’re going to make more “Guardians,” which is both good news and bad news. Director/ co-writer James (“Super”) Gunn won’t have the novelty of introducing us to this universe and these weirdos again. And since that’s pretty much the whole joke here, how will he get a curtain call out of them? — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 11:40 a.m., 2:30, 6

3D: 8:50


If I Stay

PG-13, thematic elements, some sexual material; 103 minutes. A young woman left in a coma after an accident reviews her life and relationships as a medical team fights to save her life.

* * ½ Manipulative, contrived, melodramatic — all labels we slap on that most perfectly titled movie genre, “the weeper.” All fit “If I Stay” like original packaging. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 2:20, 10


Let’s Be Cops

R, language, some graphic nudity, violence, drug use; 104 minutes. Two losers travel to Los Angeles, where they discover they can impress people and pickup girls while impersonating policemen. Jake Johnson, Damon Wayans Jr., Nina Dobrev.

* ½ The laughs are loud, lewd and low in “Let’s Be Cops,” a spoof of cop “buddy pictures” that is pretty much the definition of “an August comedy.” — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 5, 7:35


Love is Strange

R, language; 94 minutes. After an older gay couple finally marries, they find their lives together uprooted as one loses his job and the two of them are forced to sell their apartment and live apart. John Lithgow, Alfred Molina.

* * *  The movie, which feels a bit like a mashup of Woody Allen and Mike Leigh, succeeds on its simple story and its lead actors, John Lithgow and Alfred Molina. — STAR TRIBUNE (MINNEAPOLIS)

Playing: Pickford

Times: 11:45 a.m. (Sat), 1 (Sun), 4 (Fri, Mon-Thu), 4:15 (Sat), 6:15 (Fri, Sun-Mon, Wed-Thu), 6:45 (Sat), 7 (Tue)


The Maze Runner

PG-13, thematic elements, intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action; 108 minutes. A group of teens are brought to an isolated and vast maze, where they must dodge the “Grievers,” super-sized spiders, and elude the maze itself before it closes and crushes them. Dylan O’Brien, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ami Ameen.

* 1/2 This month’s “young adults save the future” film franchise is “The Maze Runner,” an indifferent quest tale about boys trapped in a gigantic maze with no idea how they got there. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 12:50, 1:50, 3:40, 4:50, 6:20, 7:30, 9:10, 10:15


Teenage Mutant Ninga Turtles 3D

PG-13, sci-fi action violence; 100 minutes. Darkness has settled over New York City as Shredder and his evil Foot Clan have an iron grip on everything from the police to the politicians. The future is grim until four unlikely outcast brothers rise from the sewers and discover their destiny as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Megan Fox, Will Arnett, William Fichtner, Whoopi Goldberg, the voices of Tony Shalhoub, Johnny Knoxville, Danny Woodburn

* *  The action beats are bigger and better than they’ve ever been in a Ninja Turtle film — brawls, shootouts, a snowy car-and-truck chase with big explosions and what not. But in between those scenes is an awful lot of chatter and exposition. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: (Fri-Sat) 12:40, 3:10

(Sun): 12:40, 3:10, 6:45, 9:15


This is Where I Leave You

R, language, sexual content, some drug use; 103 minutes. A dysfunctional family comes together after their father dies and finds that all of the old rivalries, anger and petty complaints soon rise to the surface. Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Jane Fonda, Adam Driver.

* * 1/2 It’s a cluttered, messy, manipulative movie, with too many scenes giving away their finish line right from the start ... But the players are on-the-money here, and their interplay is where this flimsy funeral farce leaves you laughing. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Barkley Village

Times: 12:30, 3, 5:40, 8:30


The Trip to Italy

Not rated, profanity; 108 minutes. A pair of friends travel to the Amalfi Coast in Italy, sampling the food, checking out the local women and engaging in an ongoing conversation that is occasionally wild and rude and often very funny. Steve Coogan, Rob Brydon.

* * * 1/2 The formula of “The Trip” is repeated — two actors, one semi-famous with a reutation of unpleasantness, the other even less famous — off on a dining tour, riffing, debating, insulting and driving. — MCCLATCHY

Playing: Pickford

Times: 2:15 (Sat), 2:45 (Tue), 3:30 (Fri, Sun-Mon, Wed-Thu), 9 (Fri-Mon, Wed-Thu), 9:15 (Tue)


A Walk Among the Tombstones

R, violence, disturbing images, language, brief nudity; 113 minutes. A private investigator is hired by a drug kingpin to discover who kidnapped and killed his wife. Liam Neeson, Dan Stevens, David Harper.

No critical review available.

Playing: Barkley Village.

Times: 12:05, 2:50, 6:10, 9

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