PUZZLING OUT PAPILLON - Movie of the Week
PUZZLING OUT PAPILLON
For Hicksflicks.com, Friday, Aug. 24, 2018
Why filmmakers feel the need to reboot perfectly good films that are easily accessible is beyond me, but here comes another one, a remake of the very good 1973 prison-escape thriller “Papillon.” It’s just one of seven movies opening this weekend as the end-of-summer slump continues.
“Puzzle” (R). When an undervalued housewife and mother (Kelly Macdonald) receives a jigsaw puzzle for her birthday, she joyfully discovers a heretofore untapped talent for solving riddles, which leads her to seek out new puzzles, along with other people who feel the same. With Irrfan Khan.
“Papillon” (R). True story of Henri “Papillon” (“Butterfly”) Charrière (Charlie Hunnam), a safecracker who was unjustly found guilty of murder and condemned to life in a penal colony on Devil’s Island in French Guiana until he befriended a quirky counterfeiter (Rami Malek) and they make plans to escape. A remake of the 1973 movie that starred Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman.
“A.X.L.” (PG). The title character in this family-friendly futuristic action picture is a robotic dog, which is hiding out in the desert when a teenage boy stumbles across and bonds with it. They will, of course, have to face an eventual showdown with A.X.L.’s scientist creators.
“The Happytime Murders” (R). Melissa McCarthy stars in this sleazy comedy set in a world where puppets and humans co-exist. She’s a Los Angeles private eye who joins her old puppet partner to track down the killers of cast members of a 1980s children’s TV program. Brian Henson (son of Jim), after years of helming family-friendly Muppet movies, goes down that raunchy, desperate R-rated road that seems to seduce all comedy filmmakers sooner or later. With Maya Rudolph, Joel McHale and Elizabeth Banks.
“Running for Grace” (PG-13). In 1920s Hawaii an orphan of mixed-race lineage finds himself ostracized by both Japanese immigrant laborers and their white employers as he works for a racist plantation owner and is unofficially adopted by a doctor (Matt Damon). The racial-divide plot kicks in when he grows up and becomes attracted to his boss’s daughter (Olivia Ritchie). With Jim Caviezel and Juliet Mills.
“Beautifully Broken” (PG-13). This faith film, which is allegedly based on true stories, follows three fathers across the globe — a refugee, a prisoner and a man whose daughter holds a painful secret — as they struggle to save their families through forgiveness and attempts at reconciliation.
“Far from the Tree” (Not Rated). Documentary about family members who are profoundly different from each other in a variety of ways. Based on the New York Times bestselling book by Andrew Solomon.