'Isn't It Romantic'

Adam Devine and Priyanka Chopra pretend that Rebel Wilson didn’t get mustard on her shirt.

“ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL” (PG-13) 2.5 STARS

Though amazing special effects are sometimes better than the story being told, this tale of a battle cyborg reborn as a young girl works just well enough to get by. Its effects are truly eye-popping, with some critics saying that it may well be the first film of its kind to successfully mix anime with live action. Rated PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and for some language. 122 min. [MC, PV, RF]

“BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY” (R) 2.75 STARS



This Queen band biopic works well enough as a dramatic tale, though it helps if you’re already a fan of the group and its charismatic lead singer, Freddie Mercury. Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, suggestive material, drug content and language. 134 min. [RF]

“COLD PURSUIT” (R) 2 STARS

Though Liam Neeson does his best to provide the revenge action he’s become known for, this movie is too violent and tries to be too cute to be taken seriously. Rated R for strong violence, drug material, and some language including sexual references. 119 min. [PV]

“THE FAVOURITE” (R) 3 STARS

Blessed with a stellar cast and a screenplay that skips from funny to shocking to sad, this is an interesting look at the excesses of royalty. Rated R for strong sexual content, nudity and language. 119 min. [RF]

“GREEN BOOK” (PG-13) 3.5 STARS

This film manages to be poignant, funny and meaningful as it explores issues ranging from racism to friendship. It’s the tale of a working-class Italian–American bouncer who becomes the driver for an African–American classical pianist on a tour of the 1960s American South. Rated PG-13 for thematic content, language including racial epithets, smoking, some violence and suggestive material. 130 min. [PV, RF]

“HAPPY DEATH DAY 2U” (PG-13) 2.25 STARS

This sequel to the surprise hit about a college girl stuck in a “Groundhog Day” loop of getting killed doesn’t work as well as the first, but still has its moments. Rated PG-13 for violence, language, sexual material and thematic elements. 100 min. [MC, PV, RF]

“ISN’T IT ROMANTIC” (PG-13) 2.5 STARS

It’s no small feat to make a movie that ridicules romantic comedies while also becoming one, but with a fun performance from comic actor Rebel Wilson and a smartly written script, this manages to ridicule the worst tropes of rom-coms even while using a few. Rated PG-13 for language, some sexual material, and a brief drug reference. 88 min. [PV, RF]

“THE LEGO MOVIE 2: THE SECOND PART” (PG) 3 STARS

This film works because the creators have locked in to a silliness that keeps you giggling. The plot about the kidnapping of a character by Lego Duplo invaders is secondary to the offbeat fun of watching Lego characters do silly things. Rated PG for some rude humor. 106 min. [MC, PV, RF]

“SPIDER-MAN: INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE” (PG) 3 STARS

This movie is exciting, funny and heartfelt. More than that, it offers a sense of inclusion, with a superhero who’s both dark-skinned and Hispanic. And if that isn’t inclusive enough, eventually Spider-people arrive from other planets. One is even a little cartoon piglet. Rated PG for frenetic sequences of animated action violence, thematic elements, and mild language. 117 min. [PV, RF]

“A STAR IS BORN” (R) 3 STARS

This tale, which relies on the trope about the potentially debilitating effect of stardom and success, works some magic in this latest retelling. That happens mainly in the music and the scenes where the characters played by Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga connect while performing. Rated R for language throughout, sexuality/nudity and substance abuse. 135 min. [MC, PV, RF]

“THE UPSIDE” (PG-13) 2 STARS

Though Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston have a few nice moments in this film about an unqualified guy who ends up caring for a paraplegic man, they’re not enough to carry this movie that can’t decide if it wants to be serious or funny. Rated PG-13 for suggestive content and drug use. 126 min. [RF]

“WHAT MEN WANT” (R) 1.75 STARS

While this takeoff on “What Women Want” gets to have some fun demeaning men by revealing their often-vapid thoughts, it loses the high ground by dipping too far down into the gutter. Rated R for language and sexual content throughout, and some drug material. 116 min. [MC, PV, RF]

—Rob Hedelt

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