The 1941 Disney animated classic “Dumbo” soared because of its charm. That’s the crucial element that’s sorely missing in Tim Burton’s live action remake. The superb art direction provides an immersive atmosphere, but Burton’s quirky style is ill-suited to the gentle story. It’s passable, but this overlong “Dumbo” never quite takes off.
Keira Knightley, Alexander Skarsgard and Jason Clarke from a post WWII love triangle in the soapy drama, “The Aftermath.” The story serves as an allegory about conflict, grief and rebuilding. It competently made but doesn’t catch fire.
In the drama “The Mustang,” Belgian actor Matthias Schoenaerts plays a Nevada prison inmate who trains wild horses as part of a rehab program. It’s a very low-key but humane and uplifting drama about the healing powers of working with animals.
Dev Patel and Armie Hammer lead the cast of “Hotel Mumbai,” a harrowing reenactment of the bloody terrorist attack at the Taj Palace Hotel in 2008. It’s a competently made and involving film, but viewers will have to decide if this violent dramatization is a salute to heroism or a work of exploitation. It’s probably both.
“The Hummingbird Project” may be the most misleading title of the year. Jesse Eisenberg and Alexander Skarsgard star in this tale of cousins who attempt to build a fiber optic line from Kansas to New York to win the high-frequency stock trading game by milliseconds…but are constantly thwarted by a scheming rival. It’s an intriguing near-miss.
Also opening this week, Matthew McConaughey take the lead in “The Beach Bum,” a subversive R-rated comedy about an aging dope head. “Unplanned” is a faith-based anti-abortion drama. “Clownnado” is a flick from local horror maven Todd Sheets. Olivia Wilde stars in “A Vigilante,” the tale of a woman who wreaks vengeance on domestic abusers. “Field Guide to Evil” is a horror anthology.