For, Friday, March 6, 2015

A sequel to a movie about old people? How could any movie about oldsters be a success when we know they don’t go make purchases, switch brands or go out to restaurants or movies … at least according to Hollywood? And yet, here it is, the “Second” in a winning franchise aimed squarely at the white-haired crowd.

Of course we also have an R-rated movie about robots and a sleazy comedy with Vince Vaughn among new films opening today.

“The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” (PG). This sequel has the young hotel owner (Dev Patel) preparing to be married while also planning to open a second hotel, since his first is overbooked. The rich cast that had such fun with the first film’s witty dialogue is at it again — Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, and others, with Richard Gere and David Strathairn joining in. Some critics are saying this is better than its predecessor.

“Chappie” (R) also stars Dev Patel and is sort of “Short Circuit” meets “RoboCop,” set in the near future as a police robot is reprogrammed and begins to show the potential to become the next step in thinking, reasoning and feeling evolution. Hugh Jackman and Sigourney Weaver co-star.

“Unfinished Business” (R). Broad sleazy comedy with Vince Vaughn, Tom Wilkinson and Dave Franco on a business trip to Europe to close an important deal when they are waylaid by sex, drugs and maybe rock ‘n’ roll.

“Timbuktu” (PG-13, in French and Arabic with English subtitles). A study in repression as a cattle herder lives quietly with his family, untouched by the extremism of Jihadists in a nearby town that have outlawed everything from music to sports to laughter, and have especially subjugated women. But that changes when the cattleman has an altercation with a neighbor.