Now Playing (in San Diego)

Love & Mercy is the first perfect 2015 movie I've seen, John Cusack and Paul Dano
as Beach Boy Brian Wilson and Elizabeth Banks tie for best actor.

LOVE & MERCY IS NOW PLAYING AT LA PALOMA ENCINITAS

Amy (2015) is the brutal, peeping, terrifyingly documented life of singer
Amy Winehouse, her breakthrough and breakdowns.

AMY IS NOW PLAYING AT AMC LA JOLLA

Trainwreck (2015) is Judd Apatow's off-kilter, truthful romantic disaster
comedy with great Amy Schumer and Bill Hader.

TRAINWRECK IS NOW PLAYING AT ULTRASTAR MISSION VALLEY

Irrational Man is the better Woody Allen/Emma Stone movie, "Crime and
Punishment"/"The Stranger" as an academic rom-com.

IRRATIONAL MAN IS NOW PLAYING AT AMC LA JOLLA

Woman in Gold is a moving and immediately credible story of the
Austrian Holocaust and restitution of Nazi-looted art.

WOMAN IN GOLD IS NOW PLAYING AT ARCLIGHT LA JOLLA

Mad Max: Fury Road: Go for the exciting George Miller visual storytelling
and action (not the acting or dialogue).

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD IS NOW PLAYING AT ARCLIGHT LA JOLLA

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is a macramé The Fault in Our Stars
meets Be Kind Rewind, precious but with honesty.

ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL IS NOW PLAYING AT AMC LA JOLLA

San Andreas is a pretty solid disaster/rescue action effects epic with
relatable characters, not as good as Twister.

SAN ANDREAS IS NOW PLAYING AT REGAL PARKWAY PLAZA

Jurassic World is a decent thriller with good 3-D but a tenuous script
and characters and a less-than-thrilling premise.

JURASSIC WORLD IS NOW PLAYING IN 3-D AT REGAL UA HORTON PLAZA

Self/less is the tale of a body thief (Ben Kingsley/Ryan Reynolds) with more
scruples than he ever let on his whole life.

Mr. Holmes is a passable fictional account of what if Sherlock Holmes
were a real old man fictionally fictionalized.

Ant-Man is least lustrous of Marvel's series. The visuals are messy,
the script has laugh-a-minute rhythm but not humor.

ANT-MAN IS NOW PLAYING IN 3-D AT REGAL ESCONDIDO

Terminator Genisys is the least good of five official Terminator
movies, the first with a pointlessly misspelled title.

Paper Towns is an unromantic high school quest and mystery with good
rapport among actors but contrived, wheezy story.

Southpaw is a horrible linked series of hackneyed sequences presenting
itself as a boxing movie, lacks plot, characters.

Spy (2015) is a silly Melissa McCarthy spy send-up with a good setup but
a lot of boring parts on the way to the end.

The Gallows (2015) is a meandering and by now we can say clichéd
found-footage creeper set in a high school theater.

New for Home Viewing

Whiplash is a J.K. Simmons/Miles Teller duel of talent, ambition and hate,
ratchets dramatic tension like crazy.

Foxcatcher is Bennett Miller's brilliant jutted-jaw true crime/sports/wealth drama
with great Channing Tatum, Mark Ruffalo, Steve Carell.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1: It's striking how each new
installment is less cheesy, like an anti-Twilight.

The Better Angels is a spare, bucolic Tree of Life-style boyhood of Lincoln
which aims at a strange power but is normal.

Big Hero 6 is an entertaining animated Marvel robot comic book adaptation
with some deftly handled big ideas, from Disney.

St. Vincent is a funny Bill Murray Grumpy Old Man, avoids traps
of sentimentality until the ending, which drags a bit.

Innocence is an intriguing supernatural fugue that's pleasant to watch
and works out its plot but feels all wrong.

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Undated reviews were written between 1995 and 2008.

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