Movies

Find Los Angeles movie showtimes, read movie reviews, find theaters in your neighborhood and buy movie tickets here. Plus, browse the top film events in LA.

Movies

The 50 most romantic movies of all time

Spring isn't in the air just yet, but we don't need an excuse to get our hearts pumping.

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Movies

The 50 films we can’t wait to see in 2015

A new Bond, Star Wars, and Terminator, plus movies from Scorsese, Spielberg and the Coen brothers.

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Movies

2015 Oscar nominees announced

The full list, including surprises and snubs, is here

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Film events this week: critics' picks

Whether you prefer drive-ins, director Q&As or outdoor screenings, we've got you covered.

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Movies

Review: Inherent Vice

A wondrously fragrant movie, emanating sweat, the stink of pot clouds and the press of hairy bodies

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Movies in theaters: Critics' picks

Movies

The Interview

Despite making a career of playing slight variations on the same pasty manchild, Seth Rogen (together with longtime collaborator Evan Goldberg) has consistently leveraged his broad appeal as a vehicle for laughing at the great crises of our times: cancer (50/50), the apocalypse (This Is the End), Zac Efron’s abs (Neighbors). But if Rogen has always been unafraid to go places that most people won’t, The Interview marks the first time he goes to a place that most people can’t: North Korea. Fashioning The Great Dictator and Inglourious Basterds into a cross joint and then lighting it from both ends, Goldberg and Rogen’s second directorial effort follows the hysterically violent misadventures of idiotic talk-show host Dave Skylark (James Franco, hamming it up) and his underachieving producer, Aaron (Rogen). When they land an interview with Skylark superfan Kim Jong-Un (Randall Park), the CIA enlists the bumbling duo to assassinate the world’s most reclusive tyrant. Cut to Pyongyang, where Skylark and Kim are singing Katy Perry’s “Firework” to each other inside the cockpit of a tank. It’s Park’s performance that elevates the premise of a routine SNL sketch into the stuff of a compelling and genuinely radical feature, the actor portraying Kim as an endearingly deranged despot with nuclear daddy issues. But Goldberg and Rogen are most enamored of the idea that Kim’s subjects see him as a living god, and the character’s insecurities soon form the cornerstone of the film’s halfhearted

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Movies

The Babadook

Who would bring a children's book called Mister Babadook, rife with illustrations of toothy terrors peering around bedroom doors, into their home? The answer to that is left deliciously vague in this slow-building, expertly unsettling horror film, but it's probably safe to assume that it wasn't the broken Australian family at the heart of the story. Amelia (Essie Davis), a tired-looking caregiver working in a nursing home, grapples with single motherhood in the wake of a car accident that killed her husband while he was driving her to the maternity ward. Samuel (Noah Wiseman), the surviving child, now six, is stuck in his shrill phase, has a hyperactive imagination and is obsessed with building weapons. These are precisely the wrong people to be reading dark bedtime stories, yet mysteriously, there's the book on the shelf. And there goes your peaceful night's sleep. Maybe the better question is: Who thinks up a film like The Babadook? Actor turned debuting feature director Jennifer Kent has the narrative chutzpah to show her entire hand in the pop-up story and then make us squirm as foretold events come true. Even more impressively, Kent (expanding richly on her 2005 short, "Monster") doesn't shy away from Amelia's off-putting mental state, an internal battle between parental love and palpable resentment. (Young Sam will always be a reminder of her marital loss.) The Babadook is female-centric in ways that other horror movies, while often dominated by tough "final girls," rar

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Inherent Vice

Ever since Boogie Nights, the untamable Paul Thomas Anderson has thrilled us with the mania of self-made men—porn stars, game-show hosts, oil prospectors and cultists. Now, for a change, the director grabs you by the nose: Inherent Vice, Anderson's sexy, swirling latest (based on Thomas Pynchon's exquisite stoner mystery set at the dawn of the '70s), is a wondrously fragrant movie, emanating sweat, the stink of pot clouds and the press of hairy bodies. It's a film you sink into, like a haze on the road, even as it jerks you along with spikes of humor. "Go back to the beach, you smell like a patchouli fart," growls Josh Brolin's flat-topped L.A. detective, Bigfoot Bjornsen, to our dazed hero, Doc (Joaquin Phoenix), an unlikely private eye but one you can't help rooting for. We're in a semifictionalized version of California, sort of like the real thing but scented with hallucinogenic behavior, weird restaurant menus and Manson-era paranoia. (Maybe that's not so altered at all.) Inherent Vice is the first time that Pynchon's elaborately dense prose has made it to the screen, and for good reason. With this novel, a recognizable thrust could be seen: an us-versus-them hippie fantasia decked out in the trappings of noir. Anderson doesn't so much adapt the book as hawk it up on the screen proudly, in faithful chunks. (His screenplay is said to have received the author's blessing.) And the movie he's ended up with is astounding: literary, loose-limbed and simply impossible to make h

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Mr. Turner

Twice before, first with Topsy-Turvy and then with Vera Drake, Mike Leigh has punctuated his bittersweet studies of contemporary life with period dramas. Now, with Mr. Turner, the British director of Naked and Secrets & Lies takes us back to the 19th century and the later years of the celebrated, groundbreaking, difficult painter J.M.W. Turner (1775-1851). Sad and joyful, Mr. Turner offers a wonderfully rich tapestry of experience, digging deeply into a complicated, contradictory life. Timothy Spall—a veteran of Leigh’s films—plays this eccentric, determined London bohemian like a bronchial, cantankerous, randy old toad with a bad back. He grunts and grimaces and gropes through life. Leigh, meanwhile, explores Turner’s life unburdened by any sense of purpose other than an intense, contagious fascination with this man, his work and, increasingly, the inevitable, slow, irresistible trudge toward death. We observe Turner’s fondness for his elderly father; his sexual relationship with his meek housekeeper (Dorothy Atkinson); his rejection of his children and their mother; his arm’s-length acceptance by the lions of the Royal Academy; his late-life relationship with a Margate widow (Marion Bailey); and the mockery of the crowd when his work turns experimental. “Vile” and a “yellow mess” concludes Queen Victoria at an exhibition. The presence of royalty in a Mike Leigh film is just one of its many welcome surprises. Mortality hangs heavily over Mr. Turner, which covers roughly 25 y

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Nightcrawler

It's no news to anyone who watches TV—especially local crime coverage—that the beat has devolved into a cesspool of gore, jittery witnesses and "hot content." What was once prophetic in movies like Network and Broadcast News is now commonplace. Writer-director Dan Gilroy's supercharged Nightcrawler, a viciously funny film, starts from that premise and wisely avoids making the same points. Instead, it twins the frenetic, sleazy hunt for shocking footage with the career ambitions of a closet psycho who, naturally, rises to the top. Closer in spirit to the media-amplified perversity of Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver and The King of Comedy, Nightcrawler feels like a major portrait of a sick, insatiable appetite. The hungry wolf at the center is Louis, impressively played by a wire-thin Jake Gyllenhaal, who right off the bat doesn't feel like your everyday L.A. loner. Bug-eyed, upbeat and frustrated by his nighttime excursions fencing stolen goods, he strolls up to a burning car on the highway, the rescue in progress. As he watches the swarming cameramen (freelancers who provide smut to stations for quick payouts), a light bulb goes off over Louis' head. Soon enough, he's out there with his own camcorder, getting closer than anyone—he nearly runs over a victim with his car—and sneaking through bullet-strewn homes without permission Initially, Nightcrawler plays like a darkly comic how-I-made-it story. Louis marshals an impressive (if slightly cracked) discipline to his new passion.

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Gone Girl

Transformed into the kind of wickedly confident Hollywood thriller you pray to see once in a decade, Gillian Flynn's absorbing missing-wife novel emerges—via a faithful script by the author herself—as the stealthiest comedy since American Psycho. It's a hypnotically perverse film, one that redeems your faith in studio smarts (but not, alas, in local law enforcement, tabloid crime reporting or, indeed, marriage). No secrets will be revealed here, apart from an obvious one: Director David Fincher, also the maker of Seven, Zodiac and The Social Network, is more than just your everyday stylish cynic. Five years of matrimony haven't been kind to the Dunnes, a pair of formerly dazzling NYC writers rocked by layoffs, family illness and a resentful move to a Missouri dead zone. We learn this early on, after the disaster that kicks off the movie: Nick (Ben Affleck, never better) stops home after a neighbor phones him about his cat that's slipped out the front door. Inside, he finds shattered glass everywhere but no Amy (Rosamund Pike, delivering a ghostly yet dominant turn that's the year's biggest surprise). Has she been snatched? Cops gather, along with news trucks, Amy's snobby Manhattan parents and a dawning sense of media frenzy in need of a culprit. Nick, who's a touch too aloof, comes in handy in this regard. Toggling between the developing investigation and flashbacks to the couple's happier days in a Brooklyn brownstone (as did Flynn's original structure), Fincher brews an om

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Movies in theaters: New releases

Movies

Annie

Updating the title character from the Great Depression to the Great Recession, director Will Gluck’s thoroughly modern Annie is a candied corporate fantasia that could only take place in Taylor Swift’s New York. Although the film might have been a fun holiday diversion, its admirably revisionist spirit is undermined by the same proto-Randian contempt for the poor that first defined the story of America’s most optimistic orphan when she was introduced in a 1924 comic strip. Annie (Quvenzhané Wallis) is now a plucky Manhattan foster child who, after a chance encounter, becomes the live-in ward of an antisocial billionaire (Jamie Foxx, terrific as mayoral candidate Will Stacks). At first, Stacks is literally allergic to poor people—he’s “germophobic”—but after singing a few songs with Annie, he learns that the 99 percent might be human after all. At the very least, they can be domesticated, especially when in the service of a political campaign. As a character, Annie has always reflected the sense of hope that greases the wheels of capitalism. But Wallis’s pathologically upbeat Annie is so divorced from reality that her saga doesn’t inspire optimism so much as it parodies upward mobility. Although the young actor delivers the same rambunctious moxie that defined her performance in Beasts of the Southern Wild, her character’s robotic contentedness makes it hard to tell if she is bullish or brainwashed. The default shrillness of the musical’s familiar numbers doesn’t help, but at

Time Out says
  • 2 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Wild

The so-real-it-hurts Laura Dern is a cinematic treasure at this point: In Wild, the actor is magically effervescent as a fluky ’70s mom, splashing in puddles with her small children and bravely facing abandonment, money woes and illness. She’s the soul of the film, and her cracked smile wrecks you even when her dialogue suggests a dumber target audience. “I was never in the driver’s seat of my life,” she murmurs, one of her many huggable moments. Unfortunately for us, Dern—only seen in flashback—isn’t the main character. Reese Witherspoon seizes onto the role of daughter Cheryl Strayed, spiritually broken and hiking the Pacific Crest Trail during the summer of 1995, with the talons of a raven looking for shiny objects below. Witherspoon is a seizer in general: Few actors can be as appealingly uptight, and when the part is Election or Legally Blonde (chipper strivers both), she’s perfect. But Wild’s journeywoman, taken from Strayed’s memoir, feels wrong for her. Cheryl is a heroin addict, a cheater, a promiscuous waitress and a bit of a space-case. Witherspoon can’t be any of these things persuasively, but she can fume at unworkable camping equipment or fumble with her gigantic backpack like a slapstick pro. Her director, Dallas Buyers Club’s Jean-Marc Vallée, pushes her toward thoughtfulness, yet his atmospheric style runs counter to the obvious material. There are highly symbolic mountains to climb, highly symbolic streams to cross. Wild works considerably better as a gender

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Song of the Sea

It really doesn’t matter that Song of the Sea tells a story as thin as the line of a pencil or that this tribute to the wistful magic of Irish folklore is so transparently indebted to the films of Hayao Miyazaki that its most crucial moments feel like they were made in Japan. What matters is that Tomm Moore has followed up 2009’s The Secret of Kells with another heartfelt and gorgeously rendered work of 2-D animation, its every blue-gray blotch of watercolor a defiant rejoinder to the rounded plastic sameness that dominates contemporary cartoons. Modernizing an ancient myth with a visual approach that splits the difference between cute and Cubism, Song of the Sea tells the tale of a widowed lighthouse keeper (voiced by the perfectly tender Brendan Gleeson) who decides that the blustery Irish coast is no place to raise his precocious 10-year-old son, Ben (David Rawle), and his curiously mute daughter, Saoirse, who may or may not be half-seal. The kids are shipped to Dublin, and the brunt of the film chronicles their enchanted journey back home, the odyssey unraveling into an exquisitely painted mess when the siblings are waylaid by an old owl witch with a broken heart (Fionnula Flanagan).  No matter how frayed the storytelling becomes, the animation is always suffused with a gentle melancholy; Song of the Sea isn’t just pretty, it’s genuinely transporting. If Moore’s film is so busy ladling on the sweet ethereal frosting of its world that Ben and Saoirse feel less like charact

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Movies

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

"The defining chapter" declare the posters for this wrap-up episode in Peter Jackson’s trilogy of Lord of the Rings prequels, the last of three films stretched from J.R.R. Tolkien's one novel, The Hobbit. Exactly what’s being defined is left conveniently vague, because what we have here is a whole lot more of Jackson’s proven formula: more battles, more creatures, more not-quite-comical asides, more stern speechifying and more gob-smackingly elaborate action set pieces. If you’ve been enjoying The Hobbit so far, you’re in for a treat. But if you were hoping for something extra or different this time around—a touch of honest emotion, perhaps—then The Battle of the Five Armies will leave you wanting.We pick up the story right where The Desolation of Smaug cut to black: The dragon is on the rampage, and all Bilbo (Martin Freeman) and his dwarvish companions can do is watch as the lizard lays waste to Lake-town. It’s a phenomenal opening, thunderous and apocalyptic, pitching us into the heart of a city on fire. But when the smoke clears, the script begins to lose focus, as what seems like every single character in the trilogy (bar one slimy riddler) comes crawling out for a cameo. While Thorin (Richard Armitage) indulges his lust for gold to the frustration of bowman Bard (Luke Evans) and elf-king Thranduil (Lee Pace), Gandalf recruits a few old pals to assist in his escape from the dungeons of Dul Guldur. In the confusion, poor Bilbo feels more like a supporting character in his

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Dumb and Dumber To

Exactly two decades after Dumb and Dumber first introduced Lloyd Christmas and Harry Dunne (Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, respectively), cinema’s most improbably tolerable pair of morons is back for a proper sequel that looks like a cash grab but works like a time machine. The Farrelly brothers’ latest is an earnest throwback that plays to the strengths of a filmmaking duo whose sense of humor has always been pitched between classical and outdated. Dumb and Dumber To may not be quite as funny as the first one, but it’s the funniest thing the Farrellys have made since. The kind of movie that features 50-year-old men hot-boxing the back of a hearse with their own farts, Dumb and Dumber To is a refreshingly straightforward rejoinder to a time when the average studio comedy was more self-reflexive than a Kiarostami film. The plot might knowingly mimic the original, but it does so more out of fidelity than laziness: Harry, in dire need of a new kidney, learns that he fathered a daughter in 1991. The mother (Kathleen Turner, whose impressively thick skin is as much a magnet for jokes as it is a shield against them) reveals that the baby was adopted by one of the country’s most brilliant men. Faster than you can make the most annoying sound in the world, Harry and Lloyd are road-tripping to meet the girl at a science conference in El Paso, leaving all sorts of carnage in their wake.  Between Harry forcibly removing Lloyd’s colostomy bag (it’s a long story), a bizarre string of Barbar

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
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Movies

Foxcatcher

Arrestingly made yet oppressive, Bennett Miller’s feeble-brained sports movie focuses, like the director’s Capote (2005), on a true-life crime story. Mark Schultz (Channing Tatum) is a world-champion wrestler forever living in the shadow of his brother, Dave (Mark Ruffalo), also a gold medalist in the sport. Theirs is a complicated relationship in which issues aren’t talked out but physicalized during tough-and-tender training sessions. (A terrific early scene captures their daily gym routine, a tussle that moves from filial intimacy to violence and back again.) Perhaps this explains why Mark feels so drawn to mysterious John du Pont (Steve Carell, transformed into creepiness), an eccentric multimillionaire who showers him with praise and invites him to train at the new facility he’s built on his sprawling estate near Valley Forge. Carell’s gun-loving one-percenter, whom the actor plays as a heavy-lidded burlesque of unbridled affluence, sees wrestling as a way to not only make his mark but to restore a sense of glory to the American empire. (It’s no coincidence that Mark’s new home is located within walking distance of a key site in the Revolutionary War.) Miller sees parallels between Du Pont’s failed, ultimately murderous campaign and the current state of the U.S., with its pronounced economic divides. Screenwriters E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman even set the events, which actually took place over the course of the 1990s, during the right-leaning 1980s to better drive home

Time Out says
  • 2 out of 5 stars
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Movie-going in LA

Movies

The 11 best movie theaters in Los Angeles

Movie theaters are a dime a dozen here in LA, but these eleven spectacular cinemas are a reel above the rest.

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Movies

Best open-air places to watch movies in LA

Love outdoor movies? Enjoy summer nights with this guide to the best places to watch films under the stars.

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Time Out film lists

Movies

50 films that best capture the essence of LA

The world knows Los Angeles better than it thinks.

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Movies

The 15 most epic surf movies

These 15 films illustrate the pure kinetic pleasure of wave riding.

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Movies

The 100 best animated movies

Animation introduces us to the magic of cinema, and we polled over 100 experts to find out why.

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Movies

50 great documentaries

As long as there is fantasy in film, audiences will also yearn for the truth—or something close to it.

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Movies

Youth-gone-wild films

Some children, adorable though they are, must simply be born bad.

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