Bad Times at the El Royale ★★ “The new film from Drew Goddard (director and co-writer of The Cabin in the Woods) is a film out of time; set during the late ’60s, it feels exactly like one of these Tarantino wannabes—only arriving 20 years too late for extra hipster cred.” Read more >>

Bohemian Rhapsody ★★ “If ever a flamboyant music star begged for an R-rated biopic, Freddie Mercury would have been the one.” Read more >>

Beautiful Boy ★★ 1/2 “What should have been a moving portrait of dealing with drug dependency, told from the points of view of a crystal-meth addict (Timothée Chalamet) and his distraught, guilt-ridden father (Steve Carell), instead becomes a cautionary tale of how easy it is to destroy a well-meaning film with corporate decision making.” Read more >>

First Man ★★ 1/2  “It seems that every young filmmaker is currently emulating Terrence Malick, specifically his work in spiritual drama The Tree of Life. Sadly, the latest to suffer from this affliction is 33-year-old Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle…” Read more >>

Halloween ★★  Jamie Lee Curtis returns to face the terror in an overhyped, empty sequel. Read more >>

The Happy Prince ★★★ 1/2  “In the case of Oscar Wilde, I wouldn’t have guessed that the final, destitute and disease-stricken years of the once-popular poet and playwright would have made for a great choice” Read more >>

Johnny English Strikes Again ★★ 1/2  “Still, director David Kerr’s latest entry made me chuckle more than I expected. Not outright belly laughs, but there are certainly minor pleasures to be had from watching a set-piece methodically unfold within a posh seaside restaurant that will soon be set ablaze due to our secret agent’s inability to convincingly perform undercover as a French waiter. ” Read more >>

Mid90s ★★★ “The second movie this year to focus on a band of skateboarding buddies, Oscar-nominated actor Jonah Hill’s debut film as a writer/director isn’t nearly the luminous little gem that was Crystal Moselle’s little-seen, female-empowering Skate Kitchen, but the roughness of Hill’s boxy, 16mm compositions cast their own spell.” Read more >>

The Nutcracker and the Four Realms ★ 1/2  “If Disney had decided to make a more traditional adaptation of The Nutcracker, Makenzie Foy (Interstellar) would have made a splendid Clara. Instead, the 17-year-old’s soulful talent is mostly wasted on a largely unrecognizable version of the Christmas season classic…” Read more >>

The Old Man & the Gun ★★★ Robert Redford bids a nostalgic farewell to acting. Read more >>

A Star is Born ★★★ 1/2  Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga make an old tale sing. Read more >>

Venom  “Longtime Venom fans might need a stiff drink of their own if they make it through this hot mess of a movie.” Read more >>

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