OPENING THIS WEEK:
Collide This isn't funny anymore. Why do people keep making movies about heists that go terribly wrong, putting the antihero protagonist and his girlfriend in grave danger? How are we even supposed to know which one of these pictures is which when we're scrolling disinterestedly past all of them on Netflix? What I wouldn't give for a movie about a heist that goes completely right for a change. Sure, it would last about 15 minutes, but think of the novelty! Anyway, this time, the action leads to a high-speed pursuit on the German Autobahn. In fact, the movie itself was originally titled Autobahn, but it had to be changed – apparently because nobody in America who doesn't own Kraftwerk albums has any idea what that word means. Now, collisions? That they know! (PG-13)
Get Out The Hollywood Reporter calls it a timely skewering of Trump-era racial division, while Variety thinks it's a send-up of the white liberals who elected Obama twice. Yep, Caucasian folks gon' see what they wanna see in Jordan Peele's directorial debut, Get Out – a sort of Stepford Wives/Guess Who's Coming to Dinner? mashup about a young black man who discovers a sinister conspiracy when he goes to meet his white girlfriend's parents. Whichever of us crackers the picture is actually aimed at, I'm sure glad it's here, because horror with a social conscience is something we could always use more of. Even better, critical reaction to the film's Sundance sneak preview indicates that it's actually extremely well-made, which is a luxury you can't always count on when it comes to politically well-intended genre outings. (R)
Rock Dog The most expensive Chinese-funded animated feature in history was a flop there, but maybe not because of any artistic shortcomings: Bitter corporate rivalries led to the film getting almost no play from the nation's leading theater chain. Will it fare better here in America, where it was actually made? Will stateside audiences take to the story of a Tibetan mastiff who puts his sheep-guarding duties aside to pursue his artistic muse as a rock & roller? Before you answer, check this out: The movie includes a voice performance by Sam Elliott, as a character named Fleetwood Yak. Not so sure of your weekend plans now, are ya? (PG)
Toni Erdmann Get a last-minute look at another of this year's foreign-made Oscar contenders, in which a divorced dad repairs his relationship with his business-minded daughter by adopting a goofy, bewigged alter ego. See, and you thought it was all just to win the White House. (R)
Everybody Loves Somebody The last time I can remember seeing an on-screen Californian head to Mexico for a family wedding, Cheech Marin's relatives were calling the INS on themselves in Up In Smoke. This time, it's a commitment-averse Latina who crosses the border to attend a big soiree, only to find herself in the middle of a romantic triangle with a co-worker and her ex. Cheech says that's a lot of complications for a throwaway gag.
In Dubious Battle Ed Harris, Bryan Cranston and Robert Duvall all have supporting roles in this adaptation of John Steinbeck's novel about union fruit workers in the 1930s. But it was directed by James Franco, which means it may not actually exist. (R)
The Red Turtle An Oscar-nominated animated feature that follows a shipwrecked man who befriends a red turtle. Their relationship plays out entirely without dialogue – and boy, don't the guys who work at Turtle Talk With Crush over at Epcot wish they could luck into a cushy gig like that. (PG)