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LEGOS v. OSCAR BAIT

  

For Hicksflicks.com, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017

A new Lego movie opening this weekend skipped the summer rush for the more sedate and serious fall season, opening opposite a drama that offers an apparent bid for Academy Awards consideration.

“The Lego Ninjago Movie” (PG). The latest animated Lego movie follows six young ninjas as they defend their island, Ninjago, from villains and monsters. The voice cast includes Dave Franco, Justin Theroux, Michael Peña, Fred Armisen, Olivia Munn and Jackie Chan.

“Stronger” (R). Jake Gyllenhaal stars as real-life Boston Marathon bombing victim Jeff Bauman, who lost his legs and subsequently went through grueling rehab to learn to walk on prostheses. Co-stars include Tatiana Maslany, Miranda Richardson and Clancy Brown.

“Brad’s Status” (R). Ben Stiller stars in this comedy-drama as a father who takes his son on a tour of colleges on the East Coast, where he bumps into an old friend whose success gives him second thoughts about his own life. With Michael Sheen, Jenna Fischer, Luke Wilson and Jimmy Kimmel.

  

“Rebel in the Rye” (PG-13). Nicholas Hoult plays reclusive novelist J.D. Salinger in this biographical film, from his youth through World War II and the publication of his seminal book, “Catcher in the Rye.” With Zoey Deutch, Kevin Spacey, Sarah Paulson, Victor Garber and Hope Davis.

“Kingsman: The Golden Circle” (R). This sequel to the ultra-gory first “Kingsman” film has the team’s British headquarters being destroyed, which brings them together with a U.S. spy organization called the Statesman. With Taron Egerton, Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Mark Strong, Halle Berry, Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges, Emily Watson and Elton John.

“Friend Request” (R). This horror yarn is about a college student named Laura who unfriends a disturbed girl on Facebook, which leads to the girl’s ritualistic suicide. When a video of the death is posted on Laura’s page, she can’t delete it and soon her friends begin dying in horrible ways. An English-language German production filmed in South Africa with an Australian star.