OPENING THIS WEEK
Captain Fantastic Filmmakers have become obsessed recently with stories about children who are raised like veal and then thrust into an outside world they can barely understand. First there was The Wolfpack. Then came Room. Now we have Captain Fantastic, in which Viggo Mortensen portrays a dad who spends a decade in the woods raising and schooling his kids according to his own worldview – only to find that control threatened when they all have to hit the road for a family funeral. The big question in Captain Fantastic is just how much pop-cultural input it's going to take for the kids to renounce their restrictive upbringing. In other words, how are you going to keep 'em down on the compound after they've seen Pokémon Go? The smart money's on Pikachu, especially because these younguns have no way of knowing that their dad is Aragorn. (R)
Fight Valley This movie features a supporting turn by Holly Holm, who scored one of the greatest upsets in sports history last November by felling the then-undefeated Ronda Rousey with a high kick to the neck. Holm's acting, though, must be less to write home about, because she doesn't play any of the female leads in this story of a young woman who trains hard to avenge the loss of her kid sister in a brutal underground fight. Its run at Universal Cineplex 20 is one of only 11 U.S. bookings for the movie, but director Rob Hawk already has a sequel in development. Meanwhile, Ronda Rousey is still counting her Furious 7 money while contentedly humming "Ain't That a Kick in the Head." (NR)
Star Trek Beyond So Mr. Sulu is gay now. And as one of the millions of Americans who are proud to put the A in LGBTQIA+, I couldn't be happier about it. George Takei, on the other hand? Not so thrilled. The actor who originated the role of Sulu thinks it's "unfortunate" that the custodians of the new Trek chose to mess with Gene Roddenberry's original vision by reimagining the Enterprise helmsman as a weenie-hider from way back. And you know what? I love that opinion too. I love it because it's the last thing you might expect from an actor who's become such a renowned gay-rights crusader in real life. I love it because – no matter how many flaws I might find in Takei's argument – it shows that his actorly devotion to a role might be just as important to him as his own role in society. And most of all, I love it because it shows that none of us is entirely right or entirely wrong about this identity/representation jazz. There are as many opinions about the meaning and nature of fictional characters as there are people on the planet. So all we can do is keep discussing it with good will and an open mind. Talk about your infinite diversity in infinite combinations. (PG-13)
The Infiltrator Bryan Cranston has earned raves for his portrayal of the government agent who did more than anyone else in history to prevent the flow of illegal drugs into the United States. (I'm still not sure how that makes one a hero, exactly, but whatever.) Would that the film itself were getting such positive feedback, but the consensus at this point seems to be that it's a fairly rote story of subterfuge that's enhanced by Cranston's deft work. In fact, some reviewers have called it his best movie role to date. Remember when leaving TV out of a statement like that wasn't praising with faint damns? (R)
Hillary's America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party Court-ordered therapy hasn't dimmed the lunatic zeal of convicted felon Dinesh D'Souza, whose latest alt-right pseudo-documentary takes on not only the Democrats' presumptive 2016 nominee, but everyone who might be voting for her as well. Can't wait for his next undertaking, 2020: The End of D'Souza's Probation. (PG-13)
Ice Age: Collision Course Five movies in, those irrepressible critters are still finding new worlds to visit and new creatures to befriend. Not to sound negative, but shouldn't they all be dead by now? (PG)
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