New movies in theaters this week feature Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer in a touching drama, Karl Urban and James Marsden in a psychological thriller, and Sam Lerner and Jonny Weston in a time-traveling shocker.
Here’s a sneak peek at what’s opening wide in theaters this week. Also, if you’re a “Game of Thrones” fan and have an IMAX theater near you, they’re playing season four’s episodes 9 and 10 from Jan. 29 to Feb. 5.
BLACK OR WHITE
PG-13 on appeal for brief strong language, thematic material involving drug use and drinking, and for a fight. Ok for Kids 13+. Reel Preview: 4.5 of 5 Reels.
This family drama from writer/director Mike Binder stars Kevin Costner as Elliot, a wealthy resident of Los Angeles whose wife dies in a car accident leaving him alone to care for his young biracial granddaughter Eloise (Jillian Estell), whose mother (Elliot’s daughter) died in childbirth. The girl’s African-American father has been out of the picture because of his serious drug problem. Meanwhile, her paternal grandmother, Rowena (Octavia Spencer), is a straight-talking woman who lives with her large family in East L.A. She decides that Eloise needs to be around her family now more than ever, and thus sues for custody.
PG-13 for some language and sexual content. Ok for Kids 13+. Reel Preview: 3 of 5 Reels.
This “found footage” film (hopefully without the shaky camera effects) centers on a group of friends who discover plans to build a time machine. So of course, they decide to build one themselves. Their initial goal is to undo past mistakes, but we all know how that turns out. Changing the past has dire consequences about what happens in the future. Directed by Dean Israelite, this movie stars Allen Evangelista, Sam Lerner, Jonny Weston, Sofia Black-D’Elia and Ginny Gardner.
R for sexual content, nudity, bloody violence, language and some drug use. Ok for Kids 17+. Reel Preview: 3.5 of 5 Reels.
Karl Urban (“Star Trek Into Darkness”) and James Marsden (“2 Guns”) star in this tense psychological thriller about five guys who conspire to secretly share a penthouse loft in the city — a place where they can indulge in their deepest fantasies. But the fantasy becomes a nightmare when they discover the dead body of an unknown woman in the loft, and they realize one of the group must be involved. Friendships are tested, loyalties are questioned, and marriages crumble as the group is consumed by fear, suspicion and murder. Directed by Erik Van Looy, this movie also stars Rachael Taylor, Isabel Lucas, Wentworth Miller and Eric Stonestreet.
JANE’S REEL RATING SYSTEM
One Reel – Even the Force can’t save it.
Two Reels – Coulda been a contender.
Three Reels – Something to talk about.
Four Reels – You want the truth? Great flick!
Five Reels – Wow! The stuff dreams are made of.
Jane Boursaw is a well-known film critic and editor-in-chief of Reel Life With Jane. Images used are courtesy of respective film studios and distributors.