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What Are You Seeing This Weekend? ‘Lincoln’ & ‘Skyfall’ Will Have ‘A Royal Affair’ In Theaters

What Are You Seeing This Weekend? 'Lincoln' & 'Skyfall' Will Have 'A Royal Affair' In Theaters

With Washington’s elections concluded, we cinephiles can now return our focus to the much more critical campaign ahead of us: the race toward the Oscars. Steven Spielberg releases his bait this weekend in limited release, a number of festival darlings (and stinkers, incidentally; but, hey, everything needs a little balance) hit the big screen, and one of Hollywood’s most time-tested blockbuster franchises gets its 23rd installment. Get your voting cards ready, folks!

Skyfall.” Directed by Sam Mendes. Starring Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Bérénice Marlohe, Javier Bardem, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, and Ralph Fiennes. Our review: “Mendes gets a lot more right than he gets wrong, and in the process has found a confident new identity for the franchise — not afraid of its past, but not chasing its competitors or being scared of the future either.” Metacritic: 82 Rotten Tomatoes: 93% The Playlist: B+

Lincoln.” Directed by Steven Spielberg. Starring Daniel Day-Lewis, Tommy Lee Jones, Sally Field, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, David Strathairn, and approximately 3,429 other pretty big names. Our impression of the cut shown at NYFF: “ ‘Lincoln’ has its moments and is replete with talent, but in its current state, it could use a lot more finessing before it’s delivered to the screen in full.” MC: 88 RT: 93%

A Royal Affair.” Directed by Nikolaj Arcel. Starring Mads Mikkelsen, Alicia Vikander, and Mikkel Boe Folsgaard. Danish, with subtitles. Our review: “It’s handsome to look at, well-acted and occasionally threatens to bursts the banks of the genre, but for the majority of its long running time, it really is just a comfortably-rendered period drama.” MC: 71 RT: 88% PL: B

The Comedy.” Directed by Rick Alverson. Starring Tim Heidecker, Eric Warheim, James Murphy, and Kate Lyn Sheil. Our review: “It’s a meaty film, filled with ideas unobscured by any generic narrative string, a move that shows not only the confidence of the director but his respect of the audience.” MC: 73 RT: 82% PL: A-

Citadel.” Directed by Ciarán Foy. Starring Aneurin Barnard, Wunmi Mosaku, and James Cosmo. Our review: “In the end, ‘Citadel’ makes you feel too lousy to really work as a cathartic horror experience, and its icky politics keep it from being anything more than a late night curio.” MC: 58 RT: 57% PL: C-

Chasing Ice.” Directed by Jeff Orlowski. Recording the effects of climate change in the Arctic, this documentary is at once gorgeous and terrifying. MC: 81 RT: 100%

Nature Calls.” Directed by Todd Rohal. Starring Patton Oswalt, Johnny Knoxville, Maura Tierney, and Thiecoura Cissoko. Our review: “Somehow both curdled and undercooked, this film feels like a curiosity more than anything — and even with Oswalt and Knoxville’s star power, it’s likely neither to attract an audience nor hold their attention.” MC: 31 RT: 7% PL: D

In Their Skin.” Directed by Jeremy Power Regimbal. Starring Selma Blair, Joshua Close, James D’Arcy, and Rachel Miner. A procedural thriller weighed down by a political undercurrent that proves too sophisticated for the expected and inadequate storyline. MC: no score yet RT: 57%

28 Hotel Rooms.” Directed by Matt Ross. Starring Marin Ireland and Chris Messina. Our review: “While there is honesty in this, is there truth? Or is it merely another indie picture where actors, writers, directors and crew get together to simulate our worst traits as human beings?” MC: 41 RT: 60% PL: D

Starlet.” Directed by Sean Baker. Starring Dree Hemingway, Besedka Johnson, Stella Maeve, and James Ransone. Our review: “ ‘Starlet’ is an interesting effort from indie filmmaker Sean Baker (this is his fourth feature), and signals the arrival of Dree Hemingway as one to watch.” MC: 76 RT: 85% PL: B

Dangerous Liaisons.” Directed by Hur Jin-ho. Starring Jang Dong-gun, Zhang Ziyi, and Cecilia Cheung. Mandarin, with subtitles. This (umpteenth) adaptation of Choderlos de Laclos’ novel sports luscious period-piece production design, but features a narrative that’s as soapy and shallow as a bubble bath. MC: 61 RT: 64%

Coming Up Roses.” Directed by Lisa Albright. Starring Bernadette Peters, Rachel Brosnahan, and Peter Friedman. An assembly of earnest performances, with Peters a particular standout, is marred by the film’s severe lack of plausibility. MC: 40 RT: no score yet

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