On Video (new releases)March 23, 2017
(Updated Thursday, March 23)
Why Him? (Comedy, R, 1 hr. 51 min., 2016)
The premise of this multivehicle car wreck — man (Bryan Cranston) thinks his daughter’s boyfriend (James Franco) isn’t worthy of her — is SO tired. This stinker is in the bottom 1 percent of movies I’ve ever seen.
20th Century Women (Drama, R, 1 hr. 58 min., 2017)
There’s not a single false, ‘‘actor-y’’ note in Annette Bening’s nuanced work as a middle-aged single mom who recruits her boarder (Greta Gerwig) and young neighbor (Elle Fanning) to help raise her teenage son. The authentic, bittersweet, sometimes lyrical screenplay feels like a slim but engrossing novel.
Silence (Drama, R, 2 hrs. 41 min, 2017)
Andrew Garfield gives the most compelling performance of his career as a Portuguese missionary in the 1630s who journeys with another young Jesuit (Adam Driver) to Japan, where Catholics are being executed. The unforgettable sequences of suffering and sorrow are filmed with such force and clarity by Martin Scorsese that it’s difficult not to look away from the screen
Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them (Fantasy, PG-13, 2 hrs. 3 min., 2016)
There’s a whole lot of movie going on in this expansion of the J.K. Rowling cinematic universe. The origin story of ‘‘magizoologist’’ Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne, bursting with absentminded professor charm) is populated with critters ranging from the tiny and whimsical to the enormous and ferocious. The result is an effective if not everlasting magical spell.
Patriots Day (Historical drama, R, 2 hrs. 13 min., 2017)
Director Peter Berg and star Mark Wahlberg, the team behind ‘‘Lone Survivor’’ and ‘‘Deepwater Horizon,’’ recount another real-life tragedy in exciting but reverent fashion. While Wahlberg, John Goodman and J.K. Simmons are superb as ever, Themo Melikidze and Alex Wolff also deserve praise for their excellent work in the challenging roles of the Boston Marathon bombers.
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