Now Playing (in San Diego)

A Most Wanted Man is a taut John Le Carré terror/spy movie starring Hoffman,
Wright, McAdams, directed by Anton Corbijn.

A MOST WANTED MAN IS NOW PLAYING AT KRIKORIAN VISTA VILLAGE

Boyhood is Richard Linklater's real-time growing up of Ellar Coltrane's
character and family, subtle, remarkable and powerful.

BOYHOOD IS NOW PLAYING AT AMC LA JOLLA

Snowpiercer is Bong Joon-ho's amazing, masterful apocalyptic action epic with
great Chris Evans, Song Kang-ho, Ed Harris.

SNOWPIERCER IS NOW PLAYING AT READING GASLAMP

The Grand Budapest Hotel is Wes Anderson's handmade tribute to peculiar
people and peculiar times, starring Ralph Fiennes.

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL IS NOW PLAYING AT LA PALOMA ENCINITAS

X-Men: Days of Future Past is a nifty self-contained comic book story
hidden in a familiar summer superhero blockbuster.

X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST IS NOW PLAYING AT READING GASLAMP

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is a fine, faithful 3-D next chapter of
the quality prequel series begun with 2011's Rise.

DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES IS NOW PLAYING IN 3-D AT AMC MISSION VALLEY

Guardians of the Galaxy is a smart, hugely enjoyable comic book movie which
avoids a lot of common comic book movie b.s.
[NOTE: It has come to my attention that the press screening I attended did not
include a showing of the complete Guardians of the Galaxy, with no
notification, so this review is provisional until I can see the entire movie.
We wuz lied to.]

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY IS NOW PLAYING IN 3-D AT REGAL ESCONDIDO

22 Jump Street is an enjoyable, laugh-out-loud funny follow-up to the
genuinely hilarious t.v. show tribute original.

22 JUMP STREET IS NOW PLAYING AT REGAL EDWARDS MIRA MESA

How to Train Your Dragon 2 is a worthy, somewhat predictable sequel to
the original with some outstanding new visuals.

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2 IS NOW PLAYING IN 3-D AT REGAL EDWARDS SAN MARCOS

Edge of Tomorrow is a nearly perfect, awesome action sci-fi movie but
there's one dumb thing that costs it half a star.

EDGE OF TOMORROW IS NOW PLAYING AT REGAL EDWARDS MIRA MESA

The Fault in Our Stars is a fairly effective love story between teenagers
with cancer, a bit overwrought at times.

THE FAULT IN OUR STARS IS NOW PLAYING AT ARCLIGHT LA JOLLA

Lucy (2014) is an over-the-top, fun, silly Luc Besson ride through everything
in the universe and more. Johansson rules.

Chef (2014) is a script which could be written by anyone given the words
chef, viral and food truck. Performances sell it.

Magic in the Moonlight is a pleasant but not compelling romantic opposition
of faith versus reason, for whatever reason.

The Purge: Anarchy finally gets oomph from the premise, while remaining
stupid. A final twist could've helped.

Tammy (2014) is markedly less raucous and less funny than Melissa McCarthy's
recent movies, by the end mostly sedate.

Get on Up is a James Brown biopic pastiche with a remarkable Chadwick Boseman
star performance but a sad dearth of songs.

Hercules (2014) is not even the best Hercules movie of the year, but not
very hatable, lazy cheese with high self-esteem.

HERCULES IS NOW PLAYING IN 3-D AT AMC FASHION VALLEY

Jersey Boys is an awfully lifeless rock-and-roll biopic of Frankie Valli
and the Four Seasons. Shot right from the stage book? NO STARS

Maleficent is a great idea for a Sleeping Beauty movie, maybe someone
will write one. Poorly stitched up, a real bad mess. NO STARS

Transformers: Age of Extinction is a boring, stupid, pathetic, vile excuse for a
Transformers movie, the worst of 2014 so far. NO STARS

New for Home Viewing

Under the Skin (2014) is a trippy, suspenseful symbolic action essay with
a great, monster Scarlett Johansson performance.

Jodorowsky's Dune is a crazy, inspiring, fascinating what-if movie about
surrealism and a quite influential unmade film.

Enemy (2014) is José Saramago's doppelgänger novel translated into a gorgeous dread
of domesticity by Denis Villeneuve and Jake Gyllenhaal.

Bad Words is Jason Bateman's directorial debut, an absurd spelling/revenge/bonding
movie which is f---ing stupid and funny.

The Raid 2 is Gareth Evans's ponderous but still not too terrible action sequel
to his all-4-stars The Raid: Redemption.

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Undated reviews were written between 1995 and 2008.

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