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Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE - BY KAREN MARTIN

Amer­i­can Fa­ble, di­rected by Anne Hamil­ton (Not Rated, 1 hour, 37 min­utes) A dreamy, lyri­cal mys­tery with big am­bi­tions and beau­ti­ful im­agery, Amer­i­can Fa­ble concerns self-as­sured 11-year-old Gitty (Pey­ton Kennedy), who finds es­cape from the fi­nan­cial woes her Wis­con­sin farm fam­ily is suf­fer­ing dur­ing the 1980s by drift­ing into a fan­tas­tic world of imag­i­na­tion.

Re­al­ity rudely in­ter­rupts her make-be­lieve realm when she dis­cov­ers that a well-dressed, ob­vi­ously dis­tressed real-es­tate de­vel­oper (Richard Schiff) who, be­cause he has been run­ning around tak­ing ad­van­tage of the ru­ral res­i­dents’ distress by buy­ing up their farms at cheap prices, has been kid­napped by her fam­ily and is im­pris­oned in a silo — a bizarre and topsy-turvy sit­u­a­tion that forces the girl to go in search of where her loy­al­ties lie.

With Gavin Mac­In­tosh, Kip Par­due, Rusty Sch­wim­mer, Marci Miller; the first film from di­rec­tor Anne Hamil­ton, who worked as an

in­tern for Ter­rence Mal­ick on The Tree of Life.

The Prom­ise (PG-13, 2 hours, 14 min­utes) A stylish, hand­somely pho­tographed, and lengthy war drama as back­drop to a not-so-sub­stan­tial love tri­an­gle. Against the back­drop of the dis­in­te­grat­ing Ot­toman Em­pire near the end of World War I, a re­mark­ably high-achiev­ing med­i­cal stu­dent Michael (Os­car Isaac) is en­tranced by fel­low Ar­me­nian Ana (Char­lotte Le Bon), which causes a ro­man­tic show­down with Ana’s boyfriend (Chris­tian Bale), a renowned Amer­i­can pho­to­jour­nal­ist spe­cial­iz­ing in po­lit­i­cal in­trigue. With Shohreh Agh­dashloo, Abel Folk; di­rected by Terry Ge­orge.

Free Fire (R, 1 hour, 30 min­utes) This rowdy, vi­o­lent, noisy and high-spir­ited ac­tion com­edy set in street­tough 1970s Bos­ton, where a black-mar­ket arms deal be­tween a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the IRA (Cil­lian Mur­phy) and a sleazy South African (Sharlto Co­p­ley), set up by an Amer­i­can busi­ness­woman (Brie Lar­son) and her side­kick (Ar­mie Ham­mer), starts out well, then rapidly dis­in­te­grates. Di­rected by Ben Wheat­ley.

Kong: Skull Is­land (PG-13, 1 hour, 58 min­utes) A too-good cast does its best with an am­bi­tious but clumsy reimag­in­ing of the giant ape tale (heav­ily com­puter-gen­er­ated), this time set in 1973 as the Viet­nam War draws to a close. With Tom Hid­dle­ston, Sa­muel L. Jack­son, John C. Reilly, John Good­man, Brie Lar­son, Richard Jenk­ins; di­rected by Jor­dan Vogt-Roberts.

A Quiet Pas­sion (PG-13, 2 hours, 6 min­utes) An el­e­gant, in­tel­li­gent bio-pic in which Cyn­thia Nixon is ex­tra­or­di­nary as Emily Dick­in­son, an in­tel­lec­tu­ally in­de­pen­dent, witty and evoca­tive poet with a deep at­tach­ment to her de­voted fam­ily who uses

her writ­ing to tran­scend the so­ci­etal and spir­i­tual re­stric­tions and strict moral ex­pec­ta­tions of Amer­ica in the mid-19th cen­tury. With Jennifer Ehle, Keith Car­ra­dine; di­rected by Ter­ence Davies.

Tommy’s Hon­our (PG, 1 hour, 52 min­utes) A fairly well-con­ceived and de­cently per­formed bio-pic con­cern­ing the found­ing of the mod­ern game of golf by an ar­gu­men­ta­tive and un­usual Scot­tish fa­ther and son in the mid-19th cen­tury. With Peter Mul­lan, Jack Low­den, Sam Neill, Ian Pirie; di­rected by Ja­son Con­nery (Sean’s son).

Buster’s Mal Heart (not

rated, 1 hour, 36 min­utes) In this shape-shift­ing psy­cho­log­i­cal drama, Rami Malek (Mr. Ro­bot) por­trays a soli­tary Mon­tana moun­tain man who shel­ters dur­ing the snowy win­ter by break­ing into empty va­ca­tion homes and vents his frus­tra­tions by call­ing into ra­dio talk shows. A for­mer ho­tel concierge with a wife and daugh­ter, his am­bi­tions to take care of his fam­ily col­lide with the changes he un­der­goes when he meets a con­spir­acy-the­ory fa­natic (DJ Qualls), which changes both of their lives for­ever. With Toby Huss, Kate Lyn Sheil; di­rected by Sarah Ad­ina Smith.

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