The rating system: ☆☆☆☆, excellent; ☆☆☆, good; ☆☆, so-so; ☆, poor; zero stars, terrible. Unless noted otherwise, reviews are by Bee critic Rick Bentley. Check movie times: http://calendar.fresnobee.com/
Never miss a local story.
The Angry Birds Movie: A visit by green piggies leaves the local bird population very angry.
Kaptaan: Man forced to be a lawyer struggles with his profession.
Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising: Plans to sell a home are threatened when a sorority moves in next door. Rose Byrne stars.
The Meddler: Widow (Susan Sarandon) tries to figure out how to live her life without her husband. The efforts drive her daughter crazy.
The Nice Guys: Two detectives investigate a mystery that takes them into the middle of the porn industry in 1977. Russell Crowe stars.
Sarbjit: Man’s destiny is determined by two warring nations.
This Time: Long-distance relationship becomes a challenge.
The 5th Wave: Young girl fights back from an alien invasion. Not reviewed.
10 Cloverfield Lane: Group goes underground to escape a major disaster. John Goodman stars. Not reviewed.
Barbershop: The Next Cut (☆☆☆): Workers at the shop arrange a weekend ceasefire among local gangs. The script by Tracy Oliver and Kenya Barris is a strong balance of serious and funny that is accented by comedians who love to improvise. It’s not a matter of the comedians trying to save the story, it’s just adding comedy accents along the way. Cedric the Entertainer continues to shine as the shop’s veteran employee, Eddie. Rated PG-13 (language, sexual situations). 112 minutes.
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice (☆☆): Batman takes on Superman. Holy bloated muddled mess! The first 45 minutes of director Zack Snyder’s film is such a confusing menagerie of worn-out and worthless story points that only a well-staged battle and the appearance of a female savior keep this latest comic-book-inspired film from being the biggest failure in the genre. Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill and Gal Gadot star. Rated PG-13 (language, violence). 151 minutes.
The Boss ( 1/2 ): Business leader (Melissa McCarthy) is not greeted with open arms after a stint in prison. The film is about as funny as getting fired on your birthday. Not only is this movie devoid of any humor, it promotes both the forced labor and physical abuse of children. Try laughing at that. Rated R (language, sexual content, drug use). 99 minutes.
Captain America: Civil War (☆☆☆1/2): Superheroes are divided by new rulings from the United Nations. The challenge Marvel Studios faced was releasing another movie after the nearly flawless “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” and hero-packed “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” In the ever-expanding universe of comic book-inspired films, “Winter Soldier” had just the right amount of chaos and control to make it an unrelenting movie thrill ride. Anything following that would have to be bigger, louder and more exciting. Rated PG-13 (action, violence). 156 minutes.
The Darkness: Family brings home a supernatural force they picked up while on vacation. Kevin Bacon stars. Not reviewed.
Deadpool (☆☆☆): Superhero with an attitude starring Ryan Reynolds. Deadpool is a foul-mouthed jerk who would rather put a bullet in a bad guy’s head than take him off to jail. He loves to talk about sex, violence, sex, sex, sex and more sex. And, just like he does in the comics, Deadpool has no problem breaking the fourth wall. Rated R (violence, sexual content, language, drug use). 117 minutes.
The Divergent Series: Allegiant (☆☆): Tris and Four face a new world, far more dangerous than ever before. Even the big finale comes across as the best of a long list of bad ideas. All of this is a product of the decision to extend this franchise into a fourth film. That can work if the material is strong enough, such as in the “Harry Potter” series. But “Allegiant” suffers the same problems as the expanded “Twilight” and “Hunger Games” movies: Stretching thin material only exposes the flaws. Rated PG-13 (violence, partial nudity). 139 minutes.
The Huntsman: Winter’s War (☆☆): The war between rival queen sisters intensifies. This “Huntsman” wildly misses its target. Rated PG-13 (violence, sensuality). 114 minutes. (Katie Walsh, Tribune)
The Jungle Book (☆☆☆ 1/2 ): Young boy survives in the jungle with a little help from his animal friends. Director Jon Favreau, who showed with “Iron Man” his skill at handling movies with heavy special effects, uses a blend of the original writings with the whimsy of the Disney 1967 animated classic and the realism of the 1994 version starring Jason Scott Lee. It’s the way all of these bits and pieces are presented that makes this movie the new king of the jungle movies. Rated PG (scary images). 111 minutes.
Keanu: Cousins impersonate ruthless killers to save a kidnapped cat. Not reviewed.
London Has Fallen (☆☆☆1/2): Plot to kill world leaders leaves London in ruins. Gerard Butler stars. If there were a hall of fame for action movie heroes, Butler would make a strong case with “London Has Fallen.” He has the wicked wit of Bruce Willis, the grit of Arnold Schwarzenegger and the mumbled dialogue delivery of Sylvester Stallone. Rated R (violence, language). 100 minutes.
Money Monster (☆☆☆): Irate investor takes over a cable money show and threatens to set off a massive explosion. George Clooney and Julia Roberts star. There’s always the possibility that the audience will lose interest in a movie where the plot is deeply entangled in money matters. But director Jodie Foster cashes in on the superb work of Clooney and Jack O’Connell to make sure there are never any monetary dull spots in “Money Monster.” Rated R (language, sexuality, violence). 90 minutes.
Mother’s Day (☆☆☆): Several moms deal with the ups and downs surrounding their special day. Jennifer Aniston stars. Director Garry Marshall uses the same formula of blending together multiple storylines, but this time he has better defined the plot and embraced the emotion. It’s not perfect, but it’s a sweet Mother’s Day gift. Rated PG-13 (suggstive material, language). 118 minutes.
My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (☆): It’s wedding bells again in the sequel to the romantic comedy hit. Rated PG-13. 94 minutes. (Nick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle)
The Revenant (☆☆☆): A foundation story of the American West starring Oscar winner Leonardo DiCaprio and directed by Oscar winner Alejandro Inarritu. The film features stunning performances by DiCaprio and Tom Hardy and fabulous visuals. Rated R (intense, at times graphic, violence, including scenes involving animals). 156 minutes. (Manohla Dargis, New York Times).
Risen (☆☆ 1/2 ): Roman tribune (Joseph Fiennes) investigates events following the Crucifixion. “Risen” is more “The Last Temptation of Christ” than “The Greatest Story Ever Told.” It’s a film that comes wrapped in the theological teachings of the Bible but is really a procedural drama that looks to fill in the gaps left between the Crucifixion and the Ascension. Rated PG-13 (Biblical violence, disturbing images). 107 minutes.
Sing Street: Boy starts a band to impress a girl he likes. Not reviewed.
Zootopia (☆☆☆): Fox and rabbit must work together to uncover a kidnapping conspiracy. When the new animated movie focuses on the critters, it’s a funny trip through the animal kingdom. What slows the ark (oops, make that arc) of the film is a crime story that’s in need of a few more jokes. Rated PG (rude humor, scary images). 108 minutes.
NEXT WEEK’S OPENINGS
Alice Through the Looking Glass: Alice returns to the weird world of Wonderland to help the Mad Hatter.
A Bigger Splash: Vacation is disrupted by the arrival of an old friend. Tilda Swinton stars.
X-Men Apocalypse: X-Men must come together to battle the world’s first mutant, Apocalypse.