The Angry Birds Movie One of the worst things about the success of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise was the license it gave lazy reviewers to make knee-jerk cracks about theme-park attractions being reimagined as movies. "What's next, Enormous Turkey Leg: The Motion Picture?" Haha, very amusing. Now please stand still so I can shoot you in the head. Since I've spent over 10 years denouncing that sort of free-associative cynicism, I suppose I have no right to warn of any dire movie-going future that might be portended by the likes of Angry Birds ... which really sucks, since I'm sure I could get off a good one about Words With Friends becoming a summer replacement series on the CW. Truth be told, I'm kind of intrigued by the cast of pedigreed comedians who have lent their voices to Birds, including Bill Hader, the brilliant Kate McKinnon and even Hannibal Buress. Excuse me, Hannibal Buress? Maybe we've figured out what made these birds so angry in the first place: Somebody outed them as date rapists. (PG)
The Nice Guys When I tell you that I positively worship Shane Black, please understand that it isn't coming from a place of any personal affinity toward the man. He's the kind of old-school Hollywood cliché who calls you "baby" without any intended irony while he looks over your shoulder for anyone it might be more important for him to talk to ... on a Wednesday night in Orlando. (How do I know? Let's just say WILD GUESS.) But a master storyteller is a master storyteller, and that's what Black has proven himself time and again, following a through line of snappy smartass dialogue and crackerjack mystery plotting from the Lethal Weapon series to Kiss Kiss Bang Bang to the seriously underrated Iron Man 3. I expect no less from The Nice Guys, Black's 1970s period piece about a private dick (Ryan Gosling) and a hired enforcer (Russell Crowe) who team up to find a missing girl. And if you aren't sold yet, there's always the novelty angle to consider, given that this is one of two wide releases opening this week to feature a supporting turn by ... you guessed it: Hannibal Buress. What a good time for Cosby to catch up on his Words With Friends. (R)
Being Charlie Co-writer Nick Reiner's struggles with addiction laid the foundation for his father Rob's latest film, a drama about a teenager whose latest rehab stay is crucial to his own dad's political fortunes. Good on you, Reiners: When I was a kid, the only thing fathers and sons had to collaborate on was the Pinewood Derby. (NR)
The Man Who Knew Infinity Dev Patel plays an Indian mathematician of the World War I era who learned much from his English mentor (Jeremy Irons). Real-life mathematicians are praising the film for its accuracy – especially the part about them being able to walk into y'all's club and just jerk out everything in sight. (PG-13)
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