Movies: New and Noteworthy

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"Rebel in the Rye": Nicholas Hoult portrays author J.D. Salinger.

Opening This Week

American Assassin A young CIA agent and a Cold War veteran team up to investigate a wave of attacks on military and civilian targets.

Dolores Documentary about Dolores Huerta, a working-class wife and mother of 11 who in the 1950s helped establish the first farm workers union and worked toward civil rights.

mother! A couple's peaceful life is disrupted by unwanted guests. Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris, and Michelle Pfeiffer star.

Rebel in the Rye Biopic on author J.D. Salinger (Nicholas Hoult).

Red Trees Filmmaker Marina Willer traces the journey of her father's family as one of only 12 Jewish families to survive the Nazi occupation of Prague during World War II.

The Solutrean Set 20,000 years ago, this IMAX feature looks at a caveman's efforts to find his home after a failed hunting expedition.

Excellent (****)

Reviewed by critics Tirdad Derakhshani (T.D.), Dan DeLuca (D.D.), and Gary Thompson (G.T.). W.S. denotes a wire-service review.

Beach Rats An aimless Brooklyn teen splits his time between his girlfriend, his friends, and the older men he meets on the internet. 1 hr. 35 R (sex, drugs, and homophobic violence) - W.S.

Columbus Two lonely, lovely young strangers - part-time librarian Casey (Haley Lu Richardson) and stuck-in-town son of an ill father Jin (John Cho) - strike up a friendship over several days spent walking and talking around Columbus, Ind., long celebrated as an improbable architectural enclave of Midwestern modernism. 1 hr. 44 No MPAA rating - W.S.

Step A soaring, heart-bursting portrait of the dancers of a Baltimore high school step team that will lift audiences to their feet, whether out of vicarious triumph, overpowering pure emotion, or simply to pay tribute to the superheroines at the core of its infectiously inspiring story. 1 hr. 23 PG (some mature elements) - W.S.

Very Good (***1/2)

The Big Sick Based on comedian Kumail Nanjiani's life, a funny, touching comedy of a Pakistani American caught between his religious family and the American woman (Zoe Kazan) he loves. With Holly Hunter, Ray Romano. 1 hr. 59. R (sexual references) - G.T.

Dunkirk Christopher Nolan's visually sweeping, stirring account of the way ordinary citizens, in the early days of World War II, effected the massive evacuation of stranded British troops from a French port surrounded by Germans. With Mark Rylance, Kenneth Branagh, Tom Hardy, and Harry Styles. 1 hr. 47 PG-13 (violence) - G.T.

Also on Screens

Annabelle: Creation *** Director David F. Sandberg has taken familiar components of a ghost story - orphans living in a remote house with balky electricity, secret crawl spaces, a dead child, a reclusive invalid who wears a Phantom of the Opera-style half-mask, all owned by a retired dollmaker whose magnum opus is the titular, demented-looking puppet - and created something uncommonly, nerve-wrackingly satisfying. 1 hr. 49 R (violence and terror) - W.S.

Atomic Blonde **1/2 Charlize Theron is a rampaging British agent in Berlin as the wall comes down in 1989, teaming with another agent (James McAvoy) to help a defector and find a traitor. Works well as actioner, not so well as espionage thriller. 1 hr. 55 R (violence, nudity) - G.T.

Brigsby Bear *** Kyle Mooney is James, a young man raised in captivity in an underground bunker who obsessively watches his parents-produced kiddie show starring a bear named Brigsby. After his liberation, he struggles in the real world, but the real world is more than willing to meet him halfway. 1 hr. 37 PG-13 (drug use) - G.T.

Carl Jackson's The Jesus Freak (Not previewed) Devout and devoted friends and a youth pastor from Texas set out on a cross-country trip to Las Vegas to win souls for Jesus. Kristen is honest, loyal, and faithful to her husband, but she and her friends are tempted and tested in Sin City. 1 hr. 30 No MPAA rating (Las Vegas)

Crown Heights **1/2 Poetic but muted true story of a man (former Eagle-turned-actor Nnamdi Asomugah) who devotes his life to freeing a friend (LaKeith Stanfield) wrongly convicted of murder. 1 hr. 39 R (language) - G.T.

The Emoji Movie * Animated feature focusing on the phone of an awkward high school freshman who is stressed out about what to text the girl he has a crush on. The movie's not terrible or offensive or outright bad; it's just meh. 1 hr. 26 PG (rude humor) - W.S.

The Glass Castle ** An adaptation of Jeannette Walls' best-selling memoir about growing up in extreme poverty and parents who both inspired and damaged her. Events she could convey through the eyes of a child whose instincts reordered reality to create the illusion that she was safe instead come across as flat and messy. With Brie Larson, Naomi Watts, and Woody Harrelson. 2 hr. 7 PG-13 (mature thematic content involving family dysfunction, language, smoking) - G.T.

Good Time ** Gritty heist-gone-wrong movie starring Robert Pattinson as a bank robber trying to protect his brother (Ben Safdie) and recover stolen loot. Looks for darkly comic laughs amid escalating real-time mayhem, but the movie has a streak of cruelty that's hard to ignore. 1 hr. 40 R (violence) - G.T.

The Hitman's Bodyguard *** An uptight security pro (Ryan Reynolds) is assigned to guard an assassin (Samuel L. Jackson) scheduled to testify against a genocidal dictator (Gary Oldman). Not great filmmaking, but these days, even the sophomoric spectacle of racial solidarity in the form of a buddy comedy is way better than nothing. 1 hr. 41 R (violence, language) - G.T.

Home Again **1/2 A woman (Reese Witherspoon) separates from her husband (Michael Sheen) and moves back into her childhood home, which doubles as a shrine to the movies her parents made. She invites three young filmmakers to move in and shenanigans begin. (some thematic and sexual material) 1 hr. 37 PG-13 - G.T.

Ingrid Goes West *** Inventive satire of social media culture starring Aubrey Plaza as a mentally fragile woman moving to Los Angeles to indulge her obsession with an Instagram star (Elizabeth Olsen). Funny supporting role for O'Shea Jackson Jr. 1 hr. 37. R (language) - G.T.

It **1/2 Stephen King's thriller about a killer clown gets a new big-screen adaptation with a Philly kid at the helm. Jaeden Lieberher stars. 2 hrs. 15 R (violence, bloody images, profanity) - G.T.

Kidnap **1/2 In this surprisingly effective thriller, Halle Berry plays a single mother who creates havoc driving her minivan to rescue her 6-year-old son, abducted from a playground by a stranger driving a green 1980s-vintage Ford Mustang GT. 1 hr. 21 R (violence, child in jeopardy, vehicular mayhem) - W.S.

Leap **1/2 The animated tale of a determined 11-year-old orphan named Felicie (voiced with girlish pluck by Elle Fanning) pursuing ballet in 1870s Paris is more of a hop than a grand jete in an already competitive cartoon arena. 1 hr. 43 PG (action) - W.S.

Logan Lucky *** Steven Soderbergh comes out of retirement for this "hillbilly heist" movie about a blue-collar man (Channing Tatum) who decides (along with Adam driver, Riley Keough, and Dan Craig) to rob the NASCAR track that fired him. A little long, but rewards you with laughs and surprises if you stick around. 1 hr. 59 PG-13 (language) - G.T.

Menashe **1/2 Hasidic comedian Menashe Lustig plays a version of himself in this docudrama about a single Hasidic man caught in an unresolvable conflict between devotion to his son and devotion to his faith. Rare glimpse inside a closed-off culture, though constrained visual presentation (some footage shot with hidden camera) hurts the film. 1 hr. 22 No MPAA rating - G.T.

The Only Living Boy in New York *1/2 An insufferable, privileged young man (Callum Turner) discovers that his distant, demanding father (Pierce Brosnan) is cheating on his emotionally fragile mother (Cynthia Nixon) with a beautiful, mysterious woman (Kate Beckinsale). The movie fails to convince as a character study, romance, or love letter to CBGB-era New York City, and the toward-the-end plot bombshell isn't plausible. 1 hr. 28 R (language and some drug material) - W.S.

Rumbles: Indians Who Rocked the World *** Documentary explores how Native Americans - their musical style and their musicianship - have fed the great river of American popular song, from rock to blues, jazz, country, and funk. 1 hr. 43 No MPAA rating - W.S.

Spider-Man: Homecoming *** Tom Holland heads this upbeat, uptempo reboot, awkwardly trying to fight crime (Michael Keaton is the Vulture) and date the beautiful captain of the debate team. With Robert Downey Jr. and Zendaya. 2 hrs. 13 PG-13 (some violence) - G.T.

Trip to Spain *** The third movie featuring actor-comedian friends Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan taunting each other throughout a restaurant and sightseeing trip. Still funny, and a little more poignant, with a nod to their growing acknowledgment of mortality. 1 hr. 41 No MPAA rating - G.T.

The War for the Planet of the Apes *** Top-notch special effects highlight this adventure story about a contingent of apes (motion-captured Andy Serkis, Steve Zahn) attempting to free captured apes from a labor camp run by a demented Army officer (Woody Harrelson). Unusually inventive and effective score by Michael Giacchino. 2 hrs. 20 mins. PG-13 (violence) - G.T.

Wind River **1/2 Taylor Sheridan's screenplay has smart dialogue, likable neo-western heroes in cowboy hats, sudden open-carry shootouts, a capable woman navigating a man's world, and some searing social commentary, but, as a rookie director, Sheridan gets lost trying to assemble these elements into a tight package. 1 hr. 41 R (strong violence, disturbing images including a rape, language) - G.T.