New movies this week
The gist: A heartburn-inducing revenge fantasy about a father driven to take matters into his own hands when the suspect in his 6-year-old daughter's disappearance is released from jail for a lack of evidence. The synopsis alone makes us want to choke somebody out of frustration. R
The cast: Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, Melissa Leo, Paul Dano, Maria Bello, Viola Davis and Terrence Howard.
The buzz: A bit cumbersome and morally ambiguous, but mostly well-made. "A spellbinding, sensationally effective thriller with a complex moral center that marks a grand-slam English-lingo debut for the gifted Quebecois director Denis Villeneuve," Variety says.
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The gist: A dramedy about a group of recovering sex addicts and their various emotional ups and downs, often played for laughs but mostly addressing their damaged psyches as a real issue. The big news is that Pink seems to be stealing the show as a support-group member, according to a lot of reviews. R
The cast: Mark Ruffalo, Gwyneth Paltrow, Tim Robbins, Josh Gad, Pink, Patrick Fugit, Carol Kane and Joely Richardson.
The buzz: It's like any other addiction movie, but with a somewhat new subject. "A compassionate and frequently funny look at sex addiction that rolls out too many pat developments to muster much depth," The Hollywood Reporter says.
Battle of the Year
The gist: Another drama focusing on a dance competition, this one being international, in which somehow learning a dance routine can magically make you a better person and restore everyone's faith in humanity. As long as you're on the team that wins, that is. PG-13
The cast: Josh Holloway, Laz Alonso, Sawandi Wilson, Josh Peck, Caity Lotz and Chris Brown.
The buzz: Hey, the dancing is impressive and a positive message is still a positive message. "The dorky, jingoistic charm wins points just for daring to dress the team in red, white and blue Kangols while the judges scream, 'Korea strikes back with an aerial assault!,' " L.A. Weekly says.
— Joshua Gillin [email protected]