Short Redhead Reel Reviews for the week of Sept. 8

by Wendy Schadewald
Special to Sun Thisweek-Dakota County Tribune

Rating system:  (4=Don’t miss, 3=Good, 2=Worth a look, 1=Forget it)

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“All Saints” (PG) (3) [Thematic elements.] — A heartwarming, inspirational, factually based, down-to-earth, thought-provoking, 108-minute religious film in which salesman-turned small-town pastor Michael Spurlock (John Corbett), who has a devoted wife (Cara Buono) and son (Myles Moore), in Tennessee concocts a harebrained scheme to save his broke church by working with Burmese refugees (Nelson Lee, et al.) and other Episcopal congregation members (Barry Corbin, David Keith, et al.) to plant crops on the church land in an attempt to feed the Asian members and to raise money to pay the mortgage.

 

“Crown Heights” (R) (3.5) [Language, some sexuality/nudity, and violence.] — After African-American Colin Warner (Keith Stanfield) is arrested by a detective (Zach Grenier) in New York City for the alleged drive-by shooting of another African-American (Cory Saint-Laurent), spends 21 years in jail for a crime committed by another man (Luke Forbes), and then his court-appointed lawyer (Nestor Carbonell) could not help him in this gritty, factually based, gut-wrenching, well-acted, 94-mijnute film based on a docudrama from a podcast episode of “This American Life,” his longtime best friend Carl King (Nnamdi Asomugha) is determined to find an attorney (Bill Camp) who will believe in his innocence and get him freed.

 

“Leap!” (PG) (2.5) [Some impolite humor and action.] — A colorful, family-friendly, entertaining, 3D, star-dotted (voiceovers by Mel Brooks, Kate McKinnon, and Dane DeHaan), 89-minute, 2016 animated film in which an 11-year-old, redheaded orphan (voiceover by Elle Fanning), who dreams of becoming a ballerina, escapes from a Brittany orphanage in the 1880s with her clumsy, inventive best friend (voiceover by Nat Wolff) and together they head to Paris where he finds an apprenticeship with an inventor and she finds herself at the Paris Opera Ballet being trained in the art of ballet by a disabled, former famous ballerina (voiceover by Carly Rae Jepsen) and primarily competing with a snooty dancer (voiceover by Maddie Ziegler) whose controlling, tyrannical mother (voiceover by Julie Khaner) forces her to dance to catch the eye of the strict choreographer (voiceover by Terrence Scammell) to be chosen to dance in “The Nutcracker” ballet.

 

“The Murderers Are Among Us” (NR) (3) [Subtitled] [DVD only] — When a beautiful German artist (Hildegard Knef) returns to Berlin in 1945 after surviving the horrors of a concentration camp in this dark, haunting, powerful, black-and-white film, she finds a traumatized, anger-prone surgeon (Ernst Wilhelm Borchert) and former SS officer living in her bombed out Berlin apartment who seeks revenge against a ruthless Nazi officer (Arno Paulsen) after learning he is now living off the spoils of war with his unsuspecting wife (Erna Sellmer) and family.

 

“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (R) (4) [DVD only] — After a charismatic, 38-year-old prisoner (Jack Nicholson) with a devilish twinkle in his eye is transferred from a work farm to an insane asylum in this well-crafted, superbly acted, Oscar-winning, 1975 Miloš Forman film, he stirs up trouble for a hardnosed, iron-fisted head nurse (Louise Fletcher) and her staff (Scatman Crothers, et al.) when he riles up and takes charge of a motley group of patients (Danny DeVito, Brad Dourif, Christopher Lloyd, William Redfield, Vincent Schiavelli, Delos V. Smith Jr., Ken Kenny, Sydney Lassick, and Will Sampson) desperate for some freedom.

 

“The People vs. Larry Flynt” (R) (3.5) [Strong sexual material, nudity, language, and drug use.] [DVD only] — A risqué, superbly acted, no-holds-barred, well-written, star-studded (James Cromwell, James Carville, Crispin Glover, Vincent Schiavelli, et al.) 1996 Miloš Forman satire in which a no-nonsense civil rights lawyer (Edward Norton) defends the First Amendment and colorfully flamboyant, shrewd “Hustler” magazine publisher Larry Flynt (Woody Harrelson) and his bisexual, jealous wife (Courtney Love) all the way to the Supreme Court.

 

“Ragtime” (PG) (4) [DVD only] — Miloš Forman’s multifaceted, highly acclaimed, star-studded (James Cagney, Mandy Patinkin, Booker T. Washington, Pat O’Brien, John Ratzenberger, Norman Mailer, et al.) 1981 film that intertwines the lives of a fireworks maker (Brad Dourif) smitten with a ditzy chorus girl (Elizabeth McGovern) who saves her murdering husband from death row, a prim housewife (Mary Steenburgen) who opens her home to the objections of her husband (James Olson) to a black woman (Debbie Allen) who just gave birth to a young son, and a proud African-American piano player (Howard E. Rollins Jr.) who goes to extraordinary lengths to obtain justice when a racist, unapologetic fire chief (Kenneth McMillan) and his staff take a practical joke to extremes with dire, far-reaching consequences in 1900s New York City.

 

“Run, Fat Boy, Run” (PG-13) (2.5) [Some rude and sexual humor, nudity, language, and smoking.] [DVD only] — An out-of-shape, jealous, unprepared British security guard (Simon Pegg) gets supports from his gambling best friend (Dylan Moran) and his Indian spatula-wielding landlord (Harish Patel) when he impetuously decides to run a grueling London marathon in this feel-good, slapstick, wacky comedy after meeting the buff, well-to-do, arrogant lover (Hank Azaria) of his ex-fiancée (Thandie Newton) who he foolishly left pregnant at the altar and the desire to gain her respect and that of his 5-year-old son (Matthew Fenton).

 

“Tulip Fever” (R) (3) [Sexual content and nudity.] — Stunning cinematography, sets, and costumes highlight this captivating, heart-wrenching, heartwarming, star-studded (Judi Dench, Tom Hollander, Zach Galifianakis, Matthew Morrison, Kevin McKidd, Cara Delevingne, Joanna Scanlan, Douglas Hodge, Michael Smiley, and David Harewood), 107-minute film adapted from Deborah Moggach’s novel in which a beautiful teenage orphan (Alicia Vikander) becomes the wife of a kindhearted, powerful, wealthy, widowed, much-older Dutch merchant (Christoph Waltz) in Amsterdam in 1634 during the frenzy tulip wars, but a few years later she unfortunately finds herself falling in love with a struggling, handsome artist (Dane DeHaan) whom her husband commissioned to paint their portraits and when her unmarried housekeeper (Holliday Grainger) gets pregnant by her fishmonger lover (Jack O’Connell), the two women concoct a reckless, harebrained scheme to solve both of their problems.

 

“Unlocked” (R) (3) [Violence and language.] — After feeling responsible for the death of coworkers due to a bombing in Paris a few years earlier in this action-packed, well-paced, entertaining, violent, twist-filled, star-studded (Michael Douglas, John Malkovich, Toni Collette, and Orlando Bloom), 93-minute Michael Apted thriller dominated by double-crosses, a guilt-ridden CIA agent (Noomi Rapace) working as an unemployment counselor in London discovers that there is a leak in the CIA when she is recruited to interrogate a Moroccan courier suspected of terrorism and then quickly finds herself the target of multiple assassins trying to get valuable protocol information while she tries to figure out who may unleash a deadly biological attack in London.

Wendy Schadewald is a Burnsville resident.