BULLET TO THE HEAD: (R) Sylvester Stallone plays James, a hit man with morals (he never takes out women or children), but when killing people is your career, one is sure to develop enemies. After James kills a high-value target, the deceased's crew won't let him off easy. When his daughter is kidnapped, James is forced to face a dangerous ex-mercenary bent on revenge. He partners up with a D.C. detective whose partner was killed by the same people, and together they try to take down the deadly gang. With director Walter Hill on the bill, this action film should do well, even with the generic storyline.
WARM BODIES: (PG-13) In an interesting twist on the nation's apparent obsession with zombies, Warm Bodies poses the question of what would happen if a zombie could become human again. After Julie is saved from a zombie attack by another zombie, she's left wondering why he didn't just chow down on her, and begins to think there might be a flicker of humanity left in him. As they spend time together, R (the zombie) begins to fall in love with Julie, but no one around her seems to understand. As they fall in love, the zombie and human worlds try to tear them apart (literally!).
AMOUR: (PG-13) In this French film about the trials of love and marriage, retired music teachers Georges and Anne have been married for many years. But when Anne suffers a stroke, leaving her paralyzed on one side of her body, their love is tested. The challenges of caring for Anne and dealing with his daughter's distress from her mother's condition nearly drive Georges crazy. Can true love transcend the hardships ahead? UA Tara Theatre, 2345 Cheshire Bridge Road
CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND: (PG) Director Steven Spielberg's '77 science-fiction masterpiece follows Richard Dreyfuss as a civilian who sees an unidentified flying object. The Columbia Pictures film was a huge success when it was originally released, and is cherished by film critics even today. Midtown Art Cinema, 931 Monroe Drive, midnight tonight.
OSCAR-NOMINATED SHORTS: (NR) In a special presentation just in time for the 2013 Oscars, Landmark Midtown Art Cinema is showing the 2013 Oscar nominees for short live-action film and short animated film. Midtown Art Cinema, 931 Monroe Dive, various times throughout the next week.
AFRICA'S ELEPHANT KINGDOM: (NR) This documentary, playing at the Fernbank Museum, offers an in-depth look at the life of Africa's most mysterious and majestic animal, the elephant. Funded by the Discovery Channel, this documentary is centered around a single elephant family making its way in Kenya. Fernbank IMAX, 767 Clifton Road
BROKEN CITY: (R) Mark Whalberg plays Billy, a broken-down police officer turned private detective. The high-profile mayor of New York City (Russell Crowe) hires him to find out who's sleeping with his straying wife. Thinking the task simple enough, Billy accepts, not knowing the can of worms he's about to open up. As he uncovers something bigger than he ever expected, Billy realizes he has been set up, and the only way to get out is by taking down the most important man in New York City.
CLOUD ATLAS (R) 3 stars: This film adaptation of British author David Mitchell's 2004 novel of the same name is built on the question of how the past interacts with the present and the future. Told over six different time spans, the film unfolds six stories of characters interacting with varying representations or forms of themselves throughout time. As the characters struggle to make sense of their situations, they can't help but feel they've faced these struggles before.
THE COLLECTION: (R) Elena thinks she's going to a secret party at an undisclosed location, but things go sour when she's kidnapped by the serial killer known as the Collector. Elena wakes up to find herself in a twisted Saw-esque hotel that is a maze of torture and horror. When Elena's father hears of her capture, he sends a group of mercenaries to retrieve her. The mercenaries turn for help to Arkin, the only person to ever escape the clutches of the Collector, to help save Elena. Facing the most horrific experience of his life once again, Arkin finds his fate tied to Elena's as it becomes clear he might not escape alive this time.
A DARK TRUTH: (R) When former CIA operative Jack Begosian (Andy Garcia) retires from the CIA, he opts for a simpler life as a radio talk show host, citing the lies and corruption that drove him away from his former career. After a huge corporate bigwig is nearly assassinated getting into her limousine outside of a protest, she reaches out to Begosian for help. As Begosian begins to dig into what the corporation has done, he uncovers a brutal massacre that occurred in a small village in Ecuador. As the stakes get higher, the billion-dollar corporation will do anything to keep this skeleton in the closet, even if it means killing Begosian. Garcia delivers a chilling performance as a stone-cold killer who will do anything to find the truth.
DJANGO UNCHAINED: (R) Quentin Tarantino's newest film takes place during the time leading up to the Civil War, Django (Jamie Fox) is a slave seeking revenge on his former owners. When he;s freed by bounty hunter Dr. King Schlutz (Christoph Waltz), the two form an unlikely alliance and track down the master (Leonardo DiCaprio) who still owns Django's wife.
FLIGHT: (R) Whip Whittaker is a veteran airline pilot who makes a life-saving, mind-boggling maneuver to crash-land a plane full of passengers safely after a huge catastrophe. Hailed as a hero, Whittaker (Denzel Washington) holds back a dark secret, until further investigation reveals that he was intoxicated the day of the crash.
GANGSTER SQUAD: (R) In 1950s Los Angeles, the city is run by Brooklyn-born mobster Mickey Cohen (Sean Penn). Cohen is as crooked as a hillbilly's teeth, paying off politicians and police to run his gambling and prostitution ring uninterrupted. The town seems lost to authority until a small group of LAPD officers bans together to take the city back. Leaving behind their badges and rules, these officers form a kill squad bent on taking Cohen down. Staring Ryan Gosling, Josh Brolin, Nick Nolte and Emma Stone, this action film hopes to distract from the lackluster script with a powerful cast, lots of explosions and ample gunplay.
THE GUILT TRIP (PG-13): Seth Rogen plays Andy, who is about to embark on a road trip to sell a new product he has created. Making a quick stop at his mother's (Barbara Streisand) house, he feels guilty about his mother being all alone and invites her along. Despite her overbearing nature, Andy begins to realize that some motherly advice and love might be just what he needed.
HANSEL & GRETEL: WITCH HUNTERS: (R) In a spin on the classic fairy tale, Hansel and Gretel are a brother-sister team bent on hunting down and killing witches. But when children start going missing from their town, Hansel and Gretel realize they might be facing the strongest witch they have ever encountered.
A HAUNTED HOUSE: (R) Marlon Wayans feels familiar in this horror-movie spoof film (in the same vein as the Scary Movie franchise). Wayans plays Malcolm, who has just moved into a dream house with his girlfriend, Kisha. Something seems to be wrong with the house, but Malcolm isn't ready to give up on it yet. When Kisha becomes possessed by a ghost, Malcolm is willing to do anything, from hiring the ghostbusters to consulting psychics and priests to save her. The spoof film combines aspects of the Paranormal Activity franchise, along with a mix of The Devil Inside and other "found-footage" horror films. Expect cheap laughs and potty humor at its finest.
HITCHCOCK: (PG-13) This biographical film focuses on the latter part of Alfred Hitchcock's Hollywood career. When the director finds the inspiration to do one of his most famous films, PSYCHO, even his wife (Helen Mirren) doubts if he can pull it off. Funding the film on his own, Hitchcock puts everything (including his marriage) on the line. UA TARA, 2345 Cheshire Bridge Road
THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY (PG-13), 3 stars: Peter Jackson explores the novel that predates the trilogy that spawned his Oscar-winning Lord of the Rings series. Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) is a timid hobbit who rises to the occasion to help a group of dwarfs reclaim their home from a dragon. While it may not live up to the expectations set by Jackson's previous films Jackson, there's still some magic in The Hobbit.
HYDE PARK ON HUDSON: (R) With England on the brink of war with Germany, the royal family is desperate to garner support from America. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his family host England's King and Queen for a weekend, in British Royalty's first visit ever to America. Roosevelt and the King have trouble connecting at first. Once common ground is found however, the film unveils a beautiful relationship of understanding between the two. UA TARA Theater, 2345 Cheshire Bridge Road
ICE AGE: CONTINENTAL DRIFT (PG) Everyone's favorite group of prehistoric mammals is back, but this time their whole world is changing and shifting, literally. As the continents drift apart, Manny, Sid, and Diego's world becomes a life at sea, using an iceberg as a makeshift ship. When the gang runs into a band of pirates led by an angry baboon, Manny's journey to reunite with his love takes a detour.
JACK REACHER (R): Tom Cruise plays Jack Reacher, a deadly ex-military police officer, in this adaptation of Lee Child's novel One Shot . When a former military sharpshooter allegedly kills five people, he only has three simple words: "Get Jack Reacher." Enlisted as a private investigator by the shooter's attorney, Reacher is asked to uncover what really happened the day those five lives were lost, ignoring laws and rules as he searches for the truth.
KILLING THEM SOFTLY: (R) When the mob needs help, they don't turn to the police - they call Cogan. Played by Brad Pitt, Cogan is a smooth-talking, killer that cleans up messes when the mob can't. After a group of men try to rob a mob-protected card game, they send the entire local crime economy spinning out of control. The mob calls on Cogan for help, and it's up to him to set things right in this thrilling flick.
THE LAST STAND: (R) Arnold Schwarzenegger is a small-town sheriff on the border of the United States and Mexico, tasked with keeping a highly dangerous drug lord from reaching the border and gaining immunity from prosecution. For some reason, Schwarzenegger's police force consists of the "original Jackass," Johnny Knoxville, and the anything-but-menacing Luis Guzmán.
LES MISERABLES: (PG-13) This adaptation of the Broadway phenomenon follows the story of ex-prisoner Jean Valjean, who is hunted down by a policeman named Javert after jumping parole. Jean comes across a young girl named Cosette and whisks her away from her terrible life. As they attempt to make a new life for themselves, Jean realizes that nothing is going to be easy or given to them in this world.
LIFE OF PI: (PG) 4 stars. This novel by Yann Martel has been adapted by director Ang Lee (Brokeback Mountain, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) for the big screen. The story follows a young boy in India whose parents own a zoo. When his parents decide to move to Canada to avoid political turmoil in their country, they and all of their animals must travel by boat to their new home. When a storm hits their boat, Pi is cast overboard with some of the animals, and ends up stranded on a lifeboat with a dangerous Bengal tiger as his companion. Fending for survival, in the middle of the ocean with a tiger that wants to eat him, Pi's faith is tested as he struggles to find his way home.
MAMA: (PG-13) When two girls' parents are brutally murdered, everyone suspects that they are also dead. It's not until years later that the two sisters are found living in a primitive cabin deep in the woods. The girls attempt to re-assimilate into normal life, but when unexplainable things start happening, their caretakers soon realize they weren't alone out in the woods.
MOVIE 43: (R) The comedy flick that almost every actor in Hollywood is in, but no one seems to know exactly what it's about. The film is a series of interconnected stories, following the lives of three kids searching for the most banned movie of all time. The 12 'mini movies' within the film are a true laugh riot. Directed and produced by Peter Farrelly.
NOT FADE AWAY: (R) America in the 1960s was a strange time, a mix of conservative middle-aged parents and young, free-thinking kids who listened to rock music, wore funky clothes, and badly needed haircuts. Three best friends in the New Jersey suburbs decide to form a rock band, but when their parents just don't seem to understand, the boys decide they have to move to the East Village in NYC, where people will "get' their music." A coming-of-age film from a nostalgic time that resonates well today, with some pretty good music to match. Midtown Art Cinema, 931 Monroe Dr.
THE ODD LIFE OF TIMOTHY GREEN: (PG) Parents Cindy and Jim Green have exhausted all means of becoming pregnant, and it seems they will never have a child of their own. In a moment of inspiration, they grab a pen and paper and write down all the wonderful traits and characteristics their hypothetical child would have. After a good laugh, they bury the box in their garden and forget about it. Then, one stormy night, a muddy boy shows up in their home, seemingly as if he grew straight out of the garden.
PARENTAL GUIDANCE: (PG) When mom and dad have to leave town for a week, it's always up to grandma and grandpa to watch the kids. This film looks at what happens when old-school, hard-nosed grandparents take care of kids raised by new-age parents. In a clash of different eras, Artie and Diane realize compromise is what family is all about.
PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 4 (R) In the fourth installment of the successful horror series, a family begins noticing strange happenings after a new family moves into the neighborhood. At first, it's easy to brush off the strange happenings like flickering lights or changing shadows. But soon the family begins to wonder if they're safe in their home.
PARKER: (R) Jason Statham plays a thief who has just scored the payday of his lifetime. But as he and his crew are making their getaway, they decide to double-cross him. Parker escapes, nearly dies, and swears to get revenge on his former crew. After taking on a new disguise, he gains the help of Leslie (Jennifer Lopez). As the two form an unlikely relationship, Parker serves up revenge to everyone in the crew who wronged him.
PROMISED LAND: (R) Matt Damon plays Steve Butler, a slick corporate employee of a large natural gas firm who is tasked with the job of buying land from the members of a small town sitting on top of a enormous reserve of gas. At first the job appears it's going to be easy, but Steve faces the challenge of an ambitious environmentalist (Josh Krasinski) bent on keeping Steve from getting control of the land.
RED DAWN: (PG-13) A small town in Washington becomes the point of invasion for the North Korean army. A group of citizens arms themselves under the direction of a Marine (Chris Hemsworth), and band together like a guerrilla militia to take back their town.
RISE OF THE GUARDIANS: (PG) When an evil spirit named Pitch threatens to wreak havoc on the children of Earth, the four 'guardians' of children everywhere (Santa Claus, The Easter Bunny, The Sandman, and The Tooth Fairy) must stop Pitch from hurting children before it's too late. These guardians enlist the help of carefree Jack Frost (responsible for children's snow days and snowball fights everywhere), to help them defeat Pitch.
RUST AND BONE: Ali is a struggling single father who moves in to live with his sister and his husband to help care for his young son. In a chance encounter at a local pub, Ali meets a beautiful woman named Stephanie, an ambitious killer whale trainer. Although Ali obviously likes her, his current situation keeps him distant. After a horrific accident leaves Stephanie in a wheelchair, their relationship starts to bloom. A beautiful love story. Midtown Art Cinema, 931 Monroe Drive.
SKY FALL: (PG-13), 4 Stars. James Bond is back with Daniel Craig making his third appearance as the guns-blazing super-spy. In the latest installment, the identitites of undercover agents implanted in terrorist cells across the nation are threatened when a murdered MI6 agent's laptop goes missing. In the course of trying to recover it, Bond is shot by his own people, falls off a speeding train, and is presumed dead. Then, MI6 is bombed, killing multiple agents and crippling the organization, and James Bond returns from the grave to seek vengeance. The villain, played by Javier Bardem, is chillingly perfect. The film has everything a Bond film should: action, babes, explosions, and more action.
TEXAS CHAINSAW: (R) Perhaps one of the greatest horror movie franchises of all time, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, has been rehashed yet again for more flesh-ripping, bone-breaking and blood-squirting action than ever in this new 3-D presentation. The story remains fairly the same: A group of young adults travels to some middle-of-nowhere small town to collect Heather's inheritance from a recently deceased grandmother. When they arrive, it doesn't take long until they start hearing that familiar, skin-crawling sound of a chainsaw revving up. The usual gore, but for an added twist, all the horrific scenes of pure sadism will be in 3-D! Definitely not one you want to take the kids to see.
THE MAN WITH THE IRON FISTS: (R) Wu-Tang Clan's RZA makes his directorial debut with this hard-hitting Kung Fu tale. The story follows a town blacksmith in China who is driven to make deadly weapons for feuding factions, until he realizes the only way to stop the bloodshed is to enter the battle himself. With production from Quentin Tarintino and a handful of all-star actors like Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu, RZA's 'Iron Fists' is going to be a knockout.
THIS IS 40 2 stars, (R): Judd Apatow expands on the characters Debbie and Pete from Knocked Up in a brand-new film about making marriage work. Now at the ripe old age of 40, Debbie decides that if she and Pete don't try to actively work at their relationship, they might never solve their problems. Starring the usual cast of suspects in an Apatow film, this rom-com takes some jabs at the difficulties and struggles of marriage.
WRECK-IT RALPH: (PG) An 8-bit video game character named Ralph (or, more specifically, Wreck-It Ralph) is tired of playing the villain in his mundane two-dimensional world, and decides to try his luck in other games. This fun film is a must-see for video game nerds and movie lovers alike.
ZERO DARK THIRTY: (R) The highly anticipated follow up to The Hurt Locker from director-producer Kathryn Bigelow and writer-producer Mark Boal creates a gripping recount of the dramatic hunt for Osama bin Laden.
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