Welcome to L.A. Weekly's Movie Guide, your look at the hottest films in Los Angeles theaters this week — from indie art-house gems and classics to popcorn-perfect blockbusters and new movies garnering buzz. Check here every week before you make your big-screen plans.
Friday, March 1
For all its verisimilitude, First Man left out some salient details about the race to land the first men on the moon. For those still hankering for more, Apollo 11 might serve as a good supplement. The crisp, archival 70mm footage that comprises the entirety of this 93-minute documentary is the main attraction, and director Todd Douglas Miller offers it up without recourse to narration or talking-head interviews. The film received solid notices upon its Sundance premiere in January. Try to see it on as big a screen as possible.
In Climax, dancers gather in an abandoned auditorium for a rehearsal, drink sangria spiked with LSD, suffer bizarre hallucinations and go nuts. That's the thin premise on which director Gaspar Noé — France's most lovable cinematic nihilist — hangs every camera trick in his playbook. The film received an award at Cannes last year and is being released by A24. Fans of the director's films, of which this is his sixth, will want to check it out, although after the bravura long-take experimentation of Into the Void, this one may feel a bit, well, anticlimactic. ArcLight Hollywood, 6360 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; Fri. March 1, showtimes vary; $16-$18. (323) 615-2550, arclightcinemas.com.
For his feature directorial debut, actor Chiwetel Ejiofor chose to adapt a beloved memoir by Malawian author William Kamkwamba about an African boy who decides to build a large wind turbine for his drought-stricken village. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January. Netflix will stream it starting today and release it in select theaters. Ejiofor also stars in this inspirational story suitable for family viewing.
Woman at War was Iceland's 2018 entry for Best Foreign-Language Film, though it didn't garner an Oscar nomination. Benedikt Erlingsson's witty comedy concerns a middle-aged woman (played by the fabulous Icelandic actress Halldóra Geirharðsdóttir) who wages a one-person war against the aluminum industry by destroying the pylons that run through the sparsely inhabited highlands. As the authorities attempt to track her down, she becomes a local folk hero, but her loyalty to the environmental cause is tested when a long-delayed adoption application is approved and she becomes a mother. Jodie Foster recently acquired U.S. rights to the film, so there may already be a Hollywood remake in the works. Laemmle Royal (also at Playhouse 7 and Town Center 5), 11523 Santa Monica Blvd., West L.A.; Fri.-Thu., March 1-7; showtimes vary. (310) 478-3836, laemmle.com.
Also opening Friday, March 1: Chaos Walking; Furie; Giant Little Ones; Greta; The Hole in the Ground; Level 16; A Madea Family Funeral; Mapplethorpe; Pretty Broken; Saint Judy; Sharkwater Extinction; The Sower; Stray; Styx; Superpower Dogs; This Magnificent Cake!; Virginia Minnesota; We Die Young; The Wedding Guest; Woman at War