(USA) A romantic immigrant’s tale in 1950s Brooklyn, pre-hipster takeover. Saoirse Ronan is an Irish girl who falls for an Italian plumber, but meets another man when she returns to her homeland on a visit. A charming fable told well, with a vivid performance from Ronan to keep the lid on any potential melodrama.
(USA) No comeback is as legendary as Sylvester Stallone’s return as Rocky Balboa. The retired boxing star mentors rising talent Adonis (Michael B. Jordan), whose late father was Rocky’s old rival Apollo Creed. A classic story of an underdog’s victory paired with excellently executed action packs a punch in our books.
The Divergent Series: Allegiant
(USA) In the penultimate film of the Divergent Series, protagonist Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley) must explore where her trust and loyalties lie as she and Four (Theo James) escape postapocalyptic Chicago and look for a way to save their city.
(USA) This new Coen Brothers ensemble epic centers on early 50s Hollywood. Real-life producer Eddie Mannix (Josh Brolin) is tasked with his biggest challenge yet when the star of an upcoming period flick (George Clooney) is kidnapped. Starring the likes of Channing Tatum, Scarlett Johansson, Ralph Fiennes and Tilda Swinton, this one’s a fun romp.
The Danish Girl
(UK) Winning a well-deserved best supporting actress Oscar, Alicia Vikander is Danish artist Gerda Wegener, whose husband Einar (Eddie Redmayne) was the first ever to attempt a maleto-female sex reassignment surgery in history. Redmayne’s performance effortlessly shows the deep emotional turmoil of transitioning in the late 19th century, but not without a few clichéd shots.
Journey to the Shore
(Japan) A romantic ghost story deeply embedded in Japanese culture, “Journey to the Shore” is about a piano teacher’s second honeymoon with her husband—who went missing and returns as a ghost.