‘Casablanca’ on big screen

Los Angeles Times - - AT THE MOVIES - — Ken­neth Turan

If you care at all about film, you’ve seen “Casablanca,” but shouldn’t you see it again, es­pe­cially on a big screen? A tri­umph for a splen­did cast top-lined by Humphrey Bog­art and In­grid Bergman, nom­i­nated for eight Academy Awards and win­ner of three — best pic­ture, direc­tor and screen­play — it’s a pic­ture whose plea­sures never grow stale.

Against con­sid­er­able odds, this World War II tale man­ages to be as po­lit­i­cal as it is ro­man­tic. Some­thing in­ex­pli­ca­bly mag­i­cal hap­pens, cre­at­ing a story where hu­mor, ide­al­ism, cyn­i­cism, es­pi­onage melo­dra­mat­ics and even deadly gun­play all have a role. It’s al­most like a whole sea­son of movies crammed into a sin­gle 102-minute pack­age.

Brought back by Fathom Events and Turner Clas­sic Movies, “Casablanca” will play at 2 and 7 p.m. Sun­day and Wed­nes­day at AMC, Re­gal, Cine­mark and other Los Angeles-area the­aters. Movie rec­om­men­da­tions from crit­ics Ken­neth Turan and Justin Chang.

Bat­tle of the Sexes

This en­joy­able and en­ter­tain­ing film, with the gifted and in­nately lik­able ac­tors Emma Stone and Steve Carell as Bil­lie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, re­spec­tively, is most in­volv­ing when it deals not with sports or so­ci­ety, but with the per­sonal strug­gles both play­ers, es­pe­cially King, were go­ing through in the run-up to their 1973 ten­nis match. (Ken­neth Turan) PG-13.

Blade Run­ner 2049

You can quib­ble with as­pects of it, but as shaped by De­nis Vil­leneuve and his mas­ter­ful cre­ative team, this high-end se­quel puts you firmly and unas­sail­ably in an­other world of its own de­vis­ing, and that is no small thing. (Ken­neth Turan) R.

BPM (Beats Per Minute)

France's for­eign-lan­guage film Os­car sub­mis­sion is a sprawl­ing flash­back to the early days of the AIDS ac­tivist group ACT UP Paris, passionately re­al­ized by the writer-direc­tor Robin Campillo with a riv­et­ing focus on tac­tics and pro­ce­dures. (Justin Chang) NR.

Faces Places

A par­tic­i­pa­tory art project takes direc­tor Agnès Varda and pho­tog­ra­pher-artist JR on a tour of the French coun­try­side in this won­der­ful doc­u­men­tary, which, like Varda's other per­sonal es­says, be­comes an ex­quis­ite trip down mem­ory lane. (Justin Chang) PG.

The Florida Project

Ab­sorb­ing us in the day-to­day rhythms of life at a dumpy Florida mo­tel com­plex, home to a wildly spir­ited 6-year-old girl named Moonee (the star­tling Brook­lynn Prince), Sean Baker ("Tan­ger­ine") goes to a place few of us know and emerges with a mas­ter­piece of em­pa­thy and imag­i­na­tion. (Justin Chang) R.

Lady Bird

As warm as it is smart, and it is very smart, this por­trait of a high school se­nior year marks ac­tor-screen­writer Greta Ger­wig's su­perb de­but as a solo direc­tor and yet an­other as­ton­ish­ing per­for­mance by star Saoirse Ro­nan. (Ken­neth Turan) R.

Last Flag Fly­ing

Bryan Cranston, Lau­rence Fish­burne and Steve Carell give richly felt per­for­mances as Viet­nam vet­er­ans re­unit­ing 30 years later in Richard Lin­klater's warm, rib­ald and ele­giac quasi-se­quel to Hal Ashby's 1973 clas­sic, "The Last De­tail." (Justin Chang) R.

The Meyerowitz Sto­ries (New and Se­lected)

Funny, mov­ing and psy­cho­log­i­cally com­plex, this is writer-direc­tor Noah Baum­bach's lat­est foray into the in­tri­cate para­doxes of dys­func­tional fam­ily dy­nam­ics, and, star­ring Dustin Hoff­man, Adam San­dler and Ben Stiller, it ranks with his best. (Ken­neth Turan) NR.


A hit at Sun­dance and al­ready nom­i­nated for a Gotham break­through direc­tor award, this drama about the emo­tional con­tent of nuns’ lives in the mid-1960s sure-hand­edly takes us in­side the world of be­lief with care, con­cern and a pierc­ing, dis­cern­ing eye. (Ken­neth Turan) R.

The Square

A Stock­holm mu­seum cu­ra­tor (an ex­cel­lent Claes Bang) un­der­goes a cri­sis of con­science in Swedish writer-direc­tor Ruben Östlund's sprawl­ing, vir­tu­oso satire of the mod­ern art world, which won the Palme d'Or at the 2017 Cannes Film Fes­ti­val. (Justin Chang) R.

Warner Bros. Pic­tures

HERE’S look­ing at you, kid: Humphrey Bog­art and In­grid Bergman star in the su­perb ro­mance, which cel­e­brates its 75th an­niver­sary with a re­turn to the­aters.

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