1 ‘Iron Man 3’
Shane Black, once the highest paid screenwriter in Hollywood, reunites with his “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” star Robert Downey Jr. to fun up a franchise that got a little doughy in the second installment. And Guy Pearce is in there, too? Boom.
Norweigan explorer Thor Heyerdahl, who conquered the Pacific with only a balsa wood raft in 1947, gets a splashy biopic in this Oscar-nominated adventure, which a lot of New Yorkers saw last weekend.
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3 ‘In the House’
François Ozon (“Swimming Pool”) once ruled the art house, but it’s gotten to where every film he makes is hailed as a comeback. His latest “comeback” stars Fabrice Luchini as an English teacher who encourages his pupil to invade the lives of a suburban family (whose mom is Roman Polanski’s wife, but whatevs).
4 ‘No Place on Earth’
Janet Tobias’ doc tells of how a simple cave mapping in Ukraine led to the discovery that, to escape the Nazis, five Jewish families hid inside for a year and half — the longest underground hide-out in recorded history.
Like Mike Leigh’s Gilbert and Sullivan picture “Topsy-Turvy,” this look at painter Pierre-August Renoir is a portrait of only a specific slither of the artist’s life. In this case it’s a portion of his last years, when he was breaking in a new (nude) model and hanging with future filmmaker son Jean.
6 ‘Bert Stern: Original Mad Man’
The “Mad Men” craze certainly had nothing to do with this documentary profile of photographer Bert Stern, who started with young Stanley Kubrick before becoming one of the visualizers of modern advertizing (and directing the excellent “Jazz on a Summer’s Day”).
7 ‘Pain & Gain’
We wanted another Michael Bay film. And for our sins we got one.
In the latest from Jeff Nichols (“Take Shelter”) sidelines Michael Shannon into a smaller role, favoring Matthew McConaughey as a wanted man hiding out on an island. Reese Witherspoon, who is somebody, apparently, puts in a few scenes.
9 ‘The Angels' Share’
The latest from English filmmaker Ken Loach (“The Wind That Shakes the Barley”) finds him in one of his comic (or, more likely, semi-comic) moods, this time with Glasweigan working class types trying to steal some rare malt whisky from a Highland distillery.
10 ‘The Big Wedding’
Almost none of you saw this last weekend. America, sometimes you’re all right.