New Releases

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Kuleana

“Brian Kohne’s eagerly awaited “Kuleana” is a film island audiences deserve but might not be expecting. The only quality this has in common with “Get A Job,” Kohne’s goofball, debut 2011 indie comedy is a wealth of cameo appearances by local Maui celebrities and personalities. Otherwise, everything in Kohne’s sophomore effort is far more polished…

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Pacific Rim: Uprising

Following the events of “Pacific Rim,” Guillermo Del Toro’s charmless, bloated 2013 film, the world has been ridden of the gigantic Kaiju monsters and the massive Jaeger robots are no longer needed. At least, that’s how it is for a few minutes of “Pacific Rim: Uprising,” in which John Boyega stars as the son of…

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Tomb Raider

Does anyone really want to see Lara Croft’s origin story? Specifically, do we really care about the life of one of the all-time most famous video game characters, before she was super-cool? Think about this for a moment. If you imagine Croft as intelligent, attractive and fierce, wearing shorts and a tank top while scaling…

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The Strangers: Prey At Night

Ten years later, somebody finally made a sequel to the horror hit “The Strangers” and proved that, once again, some movies absolutely do not need a chapter two. Here, a family of four (led by “Mad Men” star Christina Hendricks and Martin Henderson, lead in the Ice Cube-led fiasco “Torque”) go on a road trip…

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Red Sparrow

Jennifer Lawrence stars as Dominika, a Russian Bolshoi Ballet dancer whose promising career is cut painfully short. An onstage injury redirects Dominika into a life of spying, as her uncle (played by Matthias Schoenaerts) enlists her in the Russian intelligence-sponsored “Sparrow” program. Dominika must endure living in a remote location, where she is trained to…

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Annihilation

Writer/director Alex Garland’s “Annihilation” is about duality, specifically the uncomfortable contrast between suicide and self destruction. Because it’s a such a predictable, lumbering and thoroughly unpleasant film, it seems to have much less on its mind. Natalie Portman stars as Lena, a former soldier turned biologist who is abducted and forced to take part in…

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Fifty Shades Freed

So here we are, the third film based on the publishing sensation, created by E.L. James as “Twilight” fan fiction, which she transformed into a trio of hilariously crappy “books”. Hearing my wife read me aloud passages of those unfathomable bestsellers was such a riot, we’ve gone to every one of these movies on their…

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Phantom Thread

Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Phantom Thread” is set in post-WWII London and centers around an upscale clothing designer named Reynolds Woodcock (played by Daniel-Day Lewis). While Woodcock’s clothing is gorgeous, lush and exquisite, his life has a hermetically sealed quality, as his daily schedule, work habits and tolerance for anyone outside his home is practically locked….

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The Post

In 1971, The Washington Post and The New York Times published revealing, damaging and highly classified documents involving the Vietnam War. These documents, called “the Pentagon Papers,” unveiled shocking revelations regarding former U.S. Presidents and then-current President Richard Nixon. In this Steven Spielberg-directed dramatization, Tom Hanks plays Ben Bradlee, the executive editor of The Washington…

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Star Wars: The Last Jedi

There are no spoilers in my review of Rian Johnson’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” Here’s the loosest of plot summaries: Rey (played by Daisy Ridley) is still on that island with a long-gone Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill). While the other rebels are fighting against the newly assembled evil Empire, Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) remains…

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