L.A. Weekly’s Movie Guide is 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.
Movie releases (Feb. 28 – March 5):
The classic tale of Peter Pan has been reimagined in Wendy. Directed by Benh Zeitlin, this wildly imaginative tale takes place on a mysterious island that escapes the boundaries of space and time. Devin France plays Wendy, a young girl who must fight to save her family, her freedom and the spirit of youth itself from the perils of growing up. ArcLight Cinemas, 6360 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; Fri., Feb. 28, various showtimes; $13.75-$17. (323) 615-2550, arclightcinemas.com.
Written and directed by Jason Lei Howden, Daniel Radcliffe stars as internet troll Miles in Guns Akimbo. While his job may be to develop video games, his delight is to antagonize others online. After a night of drinking, Miles decides to stir things up and makes regrettable comments on a live stream broadcast of Skizm, an illegal deathmatch fight club. These comments do not sit well with Skizm mastermind, Riktor (Ned Dennehy), who decides to pit the unwitting Miles against his star fighter Nix (Samara Weaving). ArcLight Cinemas, various locations and showtimes, Fri., Feb. 28, $13.75-$17. arclightcinemas.com.
Desperate to escape an abusive relationship with her genius scientist partner (Oliver Jackson-Cohen), Cecilia Kass (Elisabeth Moss) goes into hiding with the help of her sister (Harriet Dyer), longtime friend (Aldis Hodge) and his daughter (Storm Reid). When her ex commits suicide and names her as the heir to a fortune, Cecilia is wary that there is a more sinister motivation behind it. Believing his death to be a hoax, Cecilia is in a fierce race against her own sanity to prove that The Invisible Man is alive, and hunting her. Opening wide.
See our review here.
Set in a small South Carolina town with small town ideals, Burden is a film that shows the effects deep-rooted racism can have on a community. Forming an unlikely friendship, African-American Reverend Kennedy (Forest Whitaker) helps KKK member Mike Burden (Garrett Hedlund) to leave his violent past. On his journey of faith and love, Rev. Kennedy finds himself entangled with the manipulative local KKK Grand Dragon. Pressing on despite the dangers, the good reverend is determined to heal his community. Directed by Andrew Heckler. The Landmark, 10850 W. Pico Blvd., Rancho Park; Fri., Feb. 28, 7:10 p.m.; $12-$15.50. (310) 470-0492, landmarktheatres.com.
Best known for unique animated series’ such as Venture Bros., Metalocalypse, Superjail! and Big Mouth, Titmouse’s colorful cartoon features are always a treat. Reflecting the company’s quirky, cool and often just plain weird work, the Titmouse 5-Second Animation Night is an annual event that allows Titmouse animators to have fun with creating new short-format features — many (but not all) just 5 seconds long. Titmouse founder Chris Prynoski introduces the program, a tradition that provides a short but sweet sampler of the company’s strange, sometimes disturbing, always entertaining sensibilities. Titmouse also screens rarities from the studio’s vaults. Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Fri., Feb. 28, 7:30 p.m.; $12, $8 members. americancinemathequecalendar.
John Sayles: Independent Showcase presented by UCLA Film & Television Archive features two of his classics this weekend. Nominated for Best Original Screenplay and Best Actress at the 65th Academy Awards, Passion Fish is lauded as one of Sayles’ best. Set in Louisiana, former soap star May-Alice (Mary McDonnell) is a paraplegic being cared for by nurse Chantelle (Alfre Woodard) in a well-regarded candid performance. UCLA’s Billy Wilder Theater, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood; Fri., Feb. 28, 7:30 p.m.; $8 – $10. (310) 206-8013, cinema.ucla.edu. The next night, Eight Men Out, a retelling of Eliot Asinof’s famous book of the same name is presented. This 1988 film tells the story of a scandal that rocked the world of baseball: the throwing of the 1919 World Series. Exploring tensions between players and fans, the complex scheme unfolds with the help of a hard-hitting cast: John Cusack, Charlie Sheen, Christopher Lloyd and Clifton James. UCLA’s Billy Wilder Theater, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood; Sat., Feb. 29, 7:30 p.m.; $8-$10. (310) 206-8013, cinema.ucla.edu.
This feature-length documentary tells the story of Art Paul and his work as the founding art director of Playboy magazine. Best known for creating the iconic Playboy bunny logo, the prolific artist had a deep and lasting impact on the industry he served. Art Paul of Playboy: The Man Behind the Bunny provides insight into the artist’s life and the early days of the iconic magazine. Arena Cinelounge, 6464 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; Sat., Feb. 29, $16. (323) 924-1644, arenascreen.org.
The American Genre Film Archive (AGFA)’s Horror Trailer Show compiles only the creepiest and freakiest film previews into one big gargantuan gore-fest. Expect rare trailers, retro commercials, and other old-timey grindhouse style goodness at this one, much of which hasn’t been screened since original release. The creators tout a pristine new 35mm film print for this, so expect the blood to be bright and the cuts to look extra sharp. Alamo Drafthouse, 700 West 7th St. Downtown; Thurs., March 5, 8 p.m. https://drafthouse.com/los-angeles