MOVIES

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O’con­nell) in­vades the New York stu­dio of the preen­ing TV fi­nance guru (Ge­orge Clooney) whose bad ad­vice caused the young man to lose his life’s savings. Timely yet conservative (in terms of its swank pro­fes­sion­al­ism and tick­tock edi­to­rial rhythms), the film con­demns the big­money in­vestor and ca­ble news cul­tures, treats the work­ing class as ex­pend­able and ul­ti­mately of­fers for­give­ness and re­demp­tion to the priv­i­leged celebrity rank to which Fos­ter be­longs. It’s im­plau­si­ble yet not im­per­sonal, in part be­cause of the pres­ence of Ju­lia Roberts as the TV pro­gram’s di­rec­tor, who — like Fos­ter — works to man­age the ac­tion, con­tin­u­ally of­fer­ing ad­vice to her star (Clooney) through the hid­den re­ceiver in his ear. Bartlett 10. My Big Fat Greek Wed­ding 2 (PG-13, 94 min.) Nia Varda­los and John Cor­bett are back af­ter 14 years for “an even big­ger and Greeker wed­ding.” Bartlett 10. Neigh­bors 2: Soror­ity Ris­ing (R, 92 min.) Chubby dad Seth Ro­gen en­lists cut frat neme­sis Zac Efron to com­bat a par­ty­hearty soror­ity. Bartlett 10. The Nice Guys (R, 116 min.) HHH ½ Set in 1977, writer-di­rec­tor Shane Black’s wiseacre private-eye buddy com­edy-ad­ven­ture opens be­hind the crum­bling, as yetun­re­stored Hol­ly­woood sign; the cam­era then de­scends into the “cesspool” of Los An­ge­les, where the vi­o­lent death of a porn star is a piece in a puz­zle that pulls re­luc­tant al­lies and lov­able loser-he­roes Hol­land March (Ryan Gosling) and Jack­son Healy (Rus­sell Crowe) into a cor­po­rate/ po­lit­i­cal con­spir­acy. Healy is a burly, no-non­sense en­forcer, while March is a strug­gling self-em­ployed gumshoe wiht a pre­co­cious taga­long daugh­ter; the 13-year-old is played by the won­der­ful An­gourie Rice, who steals the show even af­ter Gosling busts out his Lou Costello im­i­ta­tion. The film is vi­o­lent, clever, im­plau­si­ble and fun from start to fin­ish, with in­tox­i­cat­ing pe­riod pro­duc­tion de­sign, and a wel­come slap­stick ap­proach to may­hem. Bartlett 10. Now You See Me 2 (PG13, 129 min.) HH More larce­nous leg­erde­main with the celebrity il­lu­sion­ists, card sharps, mes­merists and pres­tidig­i­ta­tors known as “The Four Horse­men,” who this time are re­cruited by a venge­ful tech prodigy (Daniel Rad­cliffe) to pil­fer the pri­vacy-eras­ing soft­ware of a cor­rupt cap­i­tal­ist (Ben Lamb, a real-life poker pro­fes­sional). “Step Up” se­quel spe­cial­ist Jon M. Chu re­places Louis Leter­rier as di­rec­tor and Lizzy Ca­plan re­places Isla Fisher as what the script calls “the girl Horse­man,” but the cin­e­matic sleight of hand is the same: The an­tic pace, the by­play among the ma­gi­cians — re­turn­ing cast mem­bers in­clude Jesse Eisen­berg, Woody Har­rel­son, Dave Franco, Mark Ruf­falo and Mor­gan Free­man — and the blithe dis­in­ter­est in plau­si­bil­ity al­most dis­tract us from the shame­less ab­sur­dity of the plot­ting and the point­less­ness of de­pict­ing stage magic via a medium built on trick­ery. Un­for­tu­nately, no amount of mis­di­rec­tion can cover up the an­noy­ance of Har­rel­son’s mug­ging in a sec­ondary role as his ma­gi­cian char­ac­ter’s goof­ball twin brother. Col­lierville Towne 16, Cordova Cin­ema, Desoto Cin­ema 16, Hol­ly­wood 20 Cin­ema, Par­adiso, Wolfchase Gal­le­ria Cin­ema 8. Pop­star: Never Stop Never Stop­ping (R, 86 min.) Andy Sam­berg is a Bieber-es­que for­mer boy band mem­ber. Bartlett 10. The Purge: Elec­tion Year (R, 105 min.) “Make Amer­ica Great Again” is this hor­ror se­quel’s sar­donic tag line. Cine­planet 16, Col­lierville Towne 16, Cordova Cin­ema, Desoto Cin­ema 16, Forest Hill 8, Hol­ly­wood 20 Cin­ema, Ma­jes­tic, Olive Branch Cin­ema, Palace Cin­ema, Par­adiso, Stage Cin­ema, Stu­dio on the Square, Sum­mer Quar­tet Drive-in. The Shal­lows (PG-13, 87 min.) Blake Lively vs. a shark. Col­lierville Towne 16, Cordova Cin­ema, Desoto Cin­ema 16, Hol­ly­wood 20 Cin­ema, Ma­jes­tic, Olive Branch Cin­ema, Par­adiso, Stage Cin­ema. Swiss Army Man ( R, 95 min.) Paul Dano is a des­per­ate ma­rooned man and Daniel Rad­cliffe is a flat­u­lent corpse in this weirdo re­dux of “Robin­son Cru­soe.” Cordova Cin­ema, Ridge­way Cin­ema Grill. Teenage Mutant Ninja Tur­tles: Out of the Shad­ows (PG-13, 112 min.) A hard-shell se­quel. Cine­planet 16, Hol­ly­wood 20 Cin­ema, Wolfchase Gal­le­ria Cin­ema 8. X-men: Apoc­a­lypse (PG-13, 144 min.) HHH Set in 1983, the sixth Mar­vel Comics “X-men” movie (ex­clud­ing “Wolver­ine” and “Dead­pool” spin offs) casts Oscar Isaac — buried be­neath rune-etched pros­thet­ics and Pharaonic “Starlight Ex­press” cos­tumery — as a res­ur­rected Ur-mutant who re­cruits Mag­neto (Michael Fass­ben­der) and three other su­per­pow­ered “horse­men of the apoc­a­lypse” in a plan to de­stroy and re­make the world; op­pos­ing this scheme are Pro­fes­sor X (James Mcavoy), shape-shift­ing Mys­tique (Jen­nifer Lawrence), blue­furred ge­nius Beast (Ni­cholas Hoult) and other “gifted” stu­dents and in­struc­tors from Xavier’s school. Some­how, di­rec­tor Bryan Singer — who has helmed all but No. 3 of the 6 (the third is “always the worst,” a mutant ob­serves af­ter at­tend­ing “Re­turn of the Jedi”) — keeps the ac­tion clean and the char­ac­ters co­her­ent, even as Si­mon Kin­berg’s crowded script in­tro­duces younger ver­sions of sev­eral fran­chise stal­warts, in­clud­ing eye­beam-blast­ing Cy­clops (Tye Sheridan), weather-warp­ing Storm (Alexandra Shipp) and tele­pathic Jean Grey (So­phie Turner). Un­like many of his com­peti­tors, Singer finds grace notes amid the noise and chaos, as when Xavier’s ex­plod­ing man­sion is freeze-framed in time so we can watch the im­pos­si­bly fast Quick­sil­ver (Evan Peters) al­most non­cha­lantly pluck in­no­cents from the path of de­struc­tion in the nanosec­onds be­fore in­jury or death. Col­lierville Towne 16, Wolfchase Gal­le­ria Cin­ema 8. Zootopia (PG, 108 min.) HHH ½ Be­lieve it: Dis­ney’s lat­est dig­i­tally an­i­mated fea­ture is a con­tra-trumpian, race­con­scious, po­lit­i­cal-con­spir­acy neo-noir in the guise of a talk­ing-an­i­mal car­toon. For kids, it’s an al­ter­nately cud­dly and ex­u­ber­ant un­der­dog sto­rymeets-buddy com­edy, as ea­ger young Judy Hopps (voiced by Mem­phis’ Gin­nifer Good­win) works her fluffy tail off to prove her worth as Zootopia’s first bunny cop while nav­i­gat­ing an un­easy al­liance with a sly pet­ty­crim­i­nal fox (Ja­son Bate­man; for adults, it’s a torn-fromthe-head­lines com­pen­dium of con­tro­ver­sies, from eth­nic pro­fil­ing to com­mu­nity mis­trust of po­lice to in­ner-city drug con­spir­a­cies. Bartlett 10.

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