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weekend box office

Cinderella review
Walt Disney Pictures
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‘Cinderella’ Review: This Old Fairy Tale Still Has Some Magic

The name “Disney” brings to mind images of fair princesses, charming princes, magical fairy tales, and simple happily ever afters. In recent years, though, Disney has begun rethinking their classic properties, and releasing more thematically complex versions of their famous films. Sleeping Beauty became Maleficent, which turned a wicked witch into a sympathetic anti-hero; a whole mess of fairy tales turned into Into the Woods, where happily ever after preceded a whole bunch of death and tragedy. The ranks of Disney Princesses grew to include women like Merida, the bow-slinging heroine of Brave, and Anna and Else from Frozen, who rescued each other from an prince, rather than the other way around. Every value and concept that Disney had established and reinforced through decades of repetition was seemingly up for reconsideration and revision.

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The Lazarus Effect
Relativity
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‘The Lazarus Effect’ Review: This Resurrection Horror Thriller Should Have Stayed Dead

How many times in your life have you snuck up on someone and scared them? Three, maybe four times? The Lazarus Effect is the kind of horror movie where people do that constantly. It’s basically their standard greeting; instead of “Hello!” they jump on people from behind, sometimes while wearing pig masks. It doesn’t make much sense, but they’re not doing it because it’s logical — they’re doing it because this is a bargain basement horror film and you take the scares wherever you can get them.

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Kingsman: The Secret Service
20th Century Fox
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‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ Review: The Goofy James Bond Throwback You Didn’t Know You Needed

For decades, people have made fun of Roger Moore. Moore starred in more James Bond movies than anyone else, but his entire twelve-year, seven-film run is widely regarded today as a goofy, cartoonish disaster. After Moore retired from the role following 1985’s ‘A View to a Kill,’ the Bond franchise refocused, growing darker and more serious. Now 007 belongs to Daniel Craig, who’s as stern as Moore was cheeky. Craig’s Bonds (and the Jason Bourne movies that helped inspire their solemn tone) have been so hugely successful, that there is an assumption that over-the-top spy movies like Moore’s wouldn’t work in 2015. ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ proves they can.

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Fifty Shades of Grey
Universal
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‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ Review: A Vanilla Movie About Kinky Sex

Christian Grey is an unusual guy. He’s the world’s most eligible billionaire bachelor and an enormously powerful businessman. He’s an avid jogger, an exceptional piano player, and a licensed helicopter pilot. He also really like the color gray. He wears gray suits and ties, drives a gray car to his gray office building (which is called Grey House) under gray Seattle skies, where his assistant dresses in—you guessed it—gray. (For the record, his office chairs are white but the couches are gray too.) And, oh yeah, he’s into kinky sex, including bondage, spanking, and domination.

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Jupiter Ascending
Warner Bros.
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‘Jupiter Ascending’ Review: The Wachowskis Descend Into Sci-Fi Silliness

Episode 415 of ‘Seinfeld’ was called “The Movie,” and it ended with Jerry delivering a monologue about the guy in every group of friends who can’t follow the plots of films and invariably spends them whispering confused questions to their seatmates (“Why did they kill that guy? I thought he was with them? Wasn't he with them? Why would they kill him if he was with them? Oh, he wasn't with them. It's a good thing they killed him!”) ‘Jupiter Ascending’ turned me into that guy. If you can explain the plot of this baffling movie in all of its intricacies, you are either a genius or one of the Wachowskis who wrote and directed it. It’s hard to believe that a movie that contains this much exposition could also be this confusing, but it does and it is. Something went horribly wrong here.

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Project Almanac 1
Paramount
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‘Project Almanac’ Review: Found Footage Goes Back to the Future

Woe be unto humanity if teenagers discover time travel. That’s the main takeaway from the entertaining new found-footage thriller ‘Project Almanac,’ in which a quintet of adolescents find a time machine, and do exactly what a bunch of adolescents would do if they found a time machine: Party, prank, and screw around with no thought to the consequences of their actions. These kids know and cite ‘Looper’ and ‘The Terminator,’ but the movie they should have paid attention to was ‘The Butterfly Effect,’ because they seem caught off-guard when their innocent misadventures in the timestream begin to ripple out in dangerous ways.

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Relativity
Relativity
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Weekend Box Office Report: ‘The Woman in Black’ Can’t Stop ‘The Hobbit’

After the jam-packed month of December, with its huge family-friendly blockbusters and awards season Oscar bait, we have arrived in the month of January. Formerly a dumping ground for mediocre films, the month has taken on a new identity in the past few years as a testing ground for unique genre films (think ‘Cloverfield’) and a solid place to release a horror movie, which seems to do quite well right around New Year’s for whatever reason. This year, we have ‘The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death,’ which had a fairly solid opening. Not solid enough to topple the Christmas Week champions, but no one is complaining too much.

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Category: Movies Tags:
Horrible Bosses 2 shower buddy
Warner Bros.
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New Movies This Week: ‘Horrible Bosses 2,’ ‘Penguins of Madagascar’

This Thanksgiving weekend, we get a somewhat unexpected sequel to a somewhat unexpected 2011 comedy hit, along with a spin-off from a major animated blockbuster.

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Hunger Games Mockingjay action scene
Lionsgate
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New Movies This Week: ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1′

If you're not a Katniss Everdeen fan, it's probably best to stay away from movie theaters this weekend.

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Dumb and Dumber To phone scene
Universal
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New Movies This Week: ‘Dumb and Dumber To,’ ‘Beyond the Lights,’ ‘Foxcatcher’

Three new movies hit theaters this week: the sequel to a beloved '90s comedy, a romantic drama and a piece of big-time Oscar bait. Choose wisely!

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Paramount
Paramount
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Weekend Box Office Report: ‘Interstellar’ and ‘Big Hero 6′ Have a Showdown

The showdown between 'Interstellar' and 'Big Hero 6' has got to be one of the most interesting things to happen to the box office in 2014. After all, it would be tough to find two movies that are simultaneously so different and so alike. Both are pro-science adventures that are all about using your intelligence to save your friends and family. However, one is an animated, family friendly release from Disney and the other is a three-hour epic from the ever-serious Christopher Nolan. In other words, they represent opposite ends of the blockbuster spectrum.

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Category: Movies Tags:
Nightcrawler Jake Gyllenhaal
Open Road Films
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New Movies This Week: ‘Nightcrawler,’ ‘Before I Go to Sleep,’ ‘Saw 10th Anniversary’

You'll have plenty of options for some good old spine-tingling Halloween fun once the latest batch of thrillers (and one re-release) hits theaters this weekend.

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