Opening this week:
Lucy in the Sky Remember when former astronaut Lisa Nowak drove from Houston to Orlando to confront (and maybe kidnap) the woman her boyfriend was having an affair with? Remember how she was so intent on getting there on time that she wore adult diapers so she could just dookie in her seat instead of making rest stops? Well, they've made a movie about her. But guess what? They left out the part about the diapers! Crazy, right? That's what critics and audiences said when Lucy in the Sky premiered last month at the Toronto International Film Festival. I guess you could make the defense that the movie isn't technically about Nowak, but rather a very similar character played by Natalie Portman and named Lucy Cola (which sounds to me like one of those corporate mascots who all got Saturday-morning cartoons back in the '80s after Reagan gutted the FCC). Still, leaving such a wonderfully salacious plot detail hanging out there unused seems like a clear-cut case of not giving the people what they want. Next thing you know, they're going to make a movie about the astronaut who didn't get to go on a space walk because NASA didn't have a suit that fit her – and then not mention that she also tried to hack her estranged wife's bank account from space. I remember when we writers were actually grateful that truth is stranger than fiction, because it meant we could get to the bar quicker. (R)
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil Angelina Jolie is back as the live-action version of the archetypal Disney villainess. This time, she's joined by Michelle Pfeiffer as a devious queen who hatches a plot to divide humans and fairies forever. But it obviously can't have worked, because we have Drag Race. (PG)
Zombieland: Double Tap Ten years after the first Zombieland, the sales pitch for the sequel is that it's "from the director of Venom and the writers of Deadpool." For a while there, there was a real danger they'd have to be identified as the director and writers of the first Zombieland. So here's to all of us who have managed to rack up serious accomplishments over the last decade. (I went to Mount Dora ... twice!) Double Tap also reunites the original movie's cast of Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, Abigail Breslin and Bill Murray. Murray's character got snuffed last time, but I've got a copy of Broken Flowers that says being dead shouldn't preclude him in the slightest from giving a performance. This time, Murray is joined by fellow Ghostbuster Dan Aykroyd; I started to scroll through IMDb to figure out the last time he looked alive on screen, but when I got to Blues Brothers 2000, a pop-up appeared and tried to redirect me to the website of the Suicide Prevention Lifeline. I wish Pornhub cared that much about my welfare, because I hate adding new bookmarks. (R)
– This story appeared in the Oct. 16, 2019, print issue of Orlando Weekly. Stay on top of Central Florida news and views with our weekly Headlines newsletter.