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/
For the Love of Spock Adam Nimoy documentary on his father, Leonard Nimoy.
The Light Between Oceans Couple deals with the passion to start a family and a potential answer to their prayers.
Morgan A corporate troubleshooter looks into a terrifying accident. Kate Mara stars.
The 9th Life of Louis Drax A psychologist is drawn into a world that challenges the limits of fact and fantasy.
No Manches Frida Thief tries to recover the loot from a robbery but a school has been built over the spot he buried the money.
Bad Moms Mothers decide to put themselves first. Mila Kunis stars. The problem with “Bad Moms” isn’t the concept, or the message about the struggle to raise good people in the world – it’s the execution. (Katie Walsh, TNS)
Ben-Hur Jack Huston stars in the story of a prince who is falsely accused of treason and ends up a slave. Not reviewed.
The BFG (☆☆☆): A gentle giant and a spunky young girl join forces. “The BFG” brings together one of the most applauded writers of children’s books, Roald Dahl, with award-winning director Steven Spielberg. Dahl’s story looks at a spunky young girl, Sophie (Ruby Barnhill), who lives in a British orphanage and prowls the halls at night acting as if she were in command. It stands tall on its own but comes up short when compared to other giants in the Spielberg catalog. Rated PG (rude humor, peril), 115 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.
Central Intelligence ☆☆☆1/2): Reuniting with an old friend pulls a man into the spy world. Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart star. The combination of the muscle and mirth Johnson brings to “Central Intelligence” with Hart’s controlled energy makes the spy film a sure summer hit. Rated PG-13 (crude humor, nudity, language). 114 minutes.
Don’t Breathe Attempts to rob a blind man go horribly wrong. Not reviewed.
Finding Dory (☆☆☆ 1/2): The blue fish who helped Nemo goes on a trek to find her parents. The long-awaited follow-up to the 2003 release “Finding Nemo” has all the fun and charm of the original movie. In some ways – especially dealing with themes of friends and family – the sequel trumps the original. Rated PG (mild thematic elements).
Florence Foster Jenkins (☆☆): Meryl Streep stars in this true story of a woman with limited singing abilities who becomes a star. The film comes across as a vanity project. It looks like a production designed more to be a lure for Streep to be nominated for awards than it is intended to be a solid overall movie. Sadly, the movie fails to find the tempo that would make the story sing for audiences. The vulnerability, sentimentality and sweetness of the movie is like the singing voice of Florence Foster Jenkins. After a few minutes everything goes flat. Rated PG-13 (suggestive material). 110 minutes.
Ghostbusters (1/2): Team is formed to stop the host of ghosts in the city. There’s something strange in the neighborhood and it’s the way director-writer Paul Feig handled the reboot. Instead of taking the classic franchise and making it a unique product, he settles for a story that lacks originality. The only sparks of interest are the endless cameo appearances and references to the original film. Rated PG-13 (crude humor, action scenes). 105 minutes.
Hands of Stone (☆☆1/2) The film is a sprawling yet fairly conventional biopic about the Panamanian boxing champion Roberto Duran. Rated R (language, sexuality, nudity). 105 minutes. (Lindsey Bahr, AP).
Hell or High Water (☆☆☆☆): Two men rob Texas banks to pay their mortgage. Chris Pine stars. The film, a modern-day twist on the Robin Hood approach to economic equality, rides superb writing, Oscar-caliber performances and a serious social message to such grandeur as to make it one of the best pictures of 2016. Although the theme could have been preachy, it manages to make a monumental statement with quiet reserve and compassion. Rated R (violence, language, brief sexuality). 102 minutes.
Ice Age: Collision Course: Group must stop a meteor that could destroy Earth. Not reviewed.
Jason Bourne: The CIA’s most dangerous weapon is pulled back into the line of fire. Matt Damon stars. After the misfire that was “The Bourne Legacy,” a misguided attempt to pass off the franchise to Jeremy Renner, Damon and director Paul Greengrass ably right the ship, delivering a Bourne film that looks and feels like the kind that we’ve always loved. (Katie Walsh, TNS)
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.
Kubu and the Two Strings (☆☆☆): A young boy must use magic to save himself and his village. The latest visual feast served up by Laika is a blend of action and emotion set in a fantasy world of the Far East. Told through stunning backdrops and fanciful stop-motion animation, the film looks at Kubo (voiced by Art Parkinson), a young boy who lives a very spartan life surviving on the stories he tells to those living in a small seaside town. Rated PG (scary inages, action scenes). 101 minutes.
The Legend of Tarzan (☆☆☆): The jungle king must return to his country on a rescue mission. The latest look at the vine-swinging character created by Edgar Rice Burroughs takes a more civilized approach. Swedish hunk Alexander Skarsgård plays the title role with cinema's current reigning beauty, Margot Robbie, as his spunky Jane. The pair are the best-looking couple to hang with the animals in a beautiful jungle setting since Adam and Eve. "The Legend of Tarzan" is not the king of jungle movies, but it is presented with such royal reverence that some people will go ape over it. Rated PG-13 (violence, action scenes). 109 minutes.
Lights Out (☆☆☆1/2): An older sister tries to stop an entity that once haunted her from harming her brother. Sell all your stocks immediately and invest in companies that make candles, flashlights, lightbulbs or anything else that creates illumination. There’s going to be a run on those items with the release of “Lights Out.” Director David F. Sandberg has teamed with writer Eric Heisserer to create a film that proves it is possible to generate long-lasting scares without resorting to gore. Rated R (violence, scary scenes). 81 minutes.
Mechanic: Resurrection Bishop must come out of retirement when his true love is taken. Not reviewed.
Nerve (1/2): High school senior gets involved with an online game that features more and more dangerous truth-or-dares. Emma Roberts stars. The film wants to be an action film. It also wants to be a romance, indictment for the ills of society and a postcard from New York. In an effort to do so much, nothing really takes complete shape. Rated PG-13 (brief nudity, language, drinking). 96 minutes.
Nine Lives: Business man finds himself stuck inside the body of a cat. Kevin Spacey stars. Not reviewed.
Now You See Me 2 (☆☆☆): Notorious magicians are forced into one more spectacular stunt. The sequel is much stronger than the first film. It starts out with another magical concept, but instead of the story droning to a lackluster end, the big reveal is both fun and full of original twists. It does not have nearly as many problems as the first movie. Rated PG-13 (language, violence). 129 minutes.
Pete’s Dragon (☆☆): A young boy who has been living alone in the woods is separated from his pet dragon. The biggest blunder is the design of Elliott. The creature didn’t have to look like he had just left the set of “Game of Thrones” – but making the dragon look like a huge cat does little to sell this story. the new “Pete’s Dragon” is left with a central character who looks more likely to cough up a furball than a ball of fire. It’s not a good look. Rated PG (action, peril, mild language). 90 minutes.
Sausage Party (☆☆☆): Wieners try to make their escape in this mature animated offering. The most adult animated film to come along since the 1972 release “Fritz the Cat.” Instead of a barrage of sexual and racial jokes told through a tale of a lecherous feline, this cursing cartoon caper examines what happens when foodstuffs learn what really happens when they leave the supermarket. It’s the struggle that provides food for thought (sorry). Rated R (language, sexual material). 89 minutes.
The Secret Life of Pets (☆☆): The way your pet acts when you are away is very different than when you are home. “The Secret Life of Pets” comes from the same team that produced the sweet, funny and memorable “Despicable Me.” That film is almost impossible to follow, especially when there are no breakout characters like the Minions. Rated PG (rude humor, action). 95 minutes.
Southside With You A look at the efforts of a young Barack Obama to capture the heart of the young woman who would eventually become his first lady. Not reviewed.
Star Trek Beyond (☆☆☆1/2): The Enterprise faces a new threat at the edges of the uncharted space. Thanks to director Justin Lin, “Star Trek Beyond” is the most fierce in the 50-year history of the franchise. Lin combines the kind of full-speed-ahead action that he brought to the “Fast & Furious” franchise with a story that harkens back to the days when Gene Roddenberry was creating the show. Rated PG-13 (violence, action scenes). 120 minutes.
Suicide Squad (☆☆): A group of villains that include the Joker (Jared Leto) and Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) go on a mission. “Suicide Squad,” the latest fumbled movie offering based on a DC Comics franchise, has only two things going for it. The most noteworthy is Robbie, who brings a wonderful crazy energy to her role. The character has been immensely popular since debuting in “Batman: The Animated Series” in 1992, and Robbie is flawless. Rated PG-13 (violence, sexual situations) 126 minutes.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows: The Turtles must once again save the world. Megan Fox stars. Not reviewed.
War Dogs (☆☆) Two young men find that war can be profitable. Jonah Hill stars. “War Dogs” suffers the same problems as other movies about arms dealers: No matter how good the writing or performances, there is a dark cloud hanging overhead. Marginal writing and so-so performances mean movies like “War Dogs” never provide enough bang for the buck. Rated R (language, drug use, sexual references). 114 minutes.
Opening next week
Hola Mexico Film Festival Maya Cinemas will present 10 films from Mexico Sept. 9-16. Titles include “Mr. Pig,” “A Los Ojos” and “Rumbos Paralelos.”
The Idol Gaza refugee wins Arab world’s version of “American Idol.” September presentation by Fresno Filmworks 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9.
Sully Pilot becomes a hero when he is forced to make a water landing in the Hudson River. Tom Hanks stars.
When the Bow Breaks A surrogate proves to be a big problem when she begins to fixate on the husband. Morris Chestnut stars.