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SINGING WITH THE MOTABS

For Hicksflicks.com, Friday, March 11, 2016

This weekend’s new movies are marked by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir‘s commercial-film debut, a biblical drama that speculates on the Savior’s youth, a pair of foreign films and the usual Hollywood dreck.

“Singing With Angels” (PG). This dramatic film has a young wife and mother challenged with a personal crisis, which moves her to ponder her life, in particular singing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and what the music has meant to her.

“The Young Messiah” (PG-13). A drama about Jesus when he was 7 is, of course, purely speculative since the only biblical account of His youth is when He taught in the temple at age 12 (Luke 2:41-50). In the film Joseph and Mary bring Jesus with them as they return to Nazareth after the death of King Herod, unaware that Herod’s son is to be equally feared.

“10 Cloverfield Lane” (PG-13). Eschewing the “found footage” technique of “Cloverfield” (2008), this sequel (producer J.J. Abrams prefers to call it a “blood relative”) follows a young woman (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) who’s in a car accident and wakes up to find herself being held captive in a bunker by two men (John Goodman, John Gallagher Jr.) who claim the outside world is affected by a widespread chemical attack.

“The Perfect Match” (R). A player makes a bet with two pals that he can date one woman for a month and still not feel attached or desire a long-term relationship in this romantic comedy-drama. Terrrence J and Cassie Ventura star, with Donald Faison, Paula Patton and Brandy Norwood in the supporting cast.

“The Brothers Grimsby” (R). Sacha Baron Cohen’s latest gross-out vanity vehicle (after “Borat,” “Bruno” and “The Dictator”) casts him as an orphaned Northern England football hooligan that has been searching for his long-lost brother (Mark Strong) for more than two decades, then discovers he’s a top MI-5 agent. Naturally, he bungles into his brother’s latest case. Co-stars Isla Fisher, Rebel Wilson, Penelope  Cruz, Gabourey Sidibe and Ian McShane.

“Embrace of the Serpent” (Not Rated, in Spanish with English subtitles). This Colombian film was also nominated as best foreign-language film of the year for its two parallel stories, one in 1909 and the other in 1940, that respectively tell of an Amazonian shaman and last survivor of hi tribe, and two scientists looking for a rare sacred plant. (Exclusively at the Broadway Centre Cinemas.)

“A War” (R, in Danish with English subtitles). A Danish military company in Afghanistan attacks a civilian compound after the battalion is caught in enemy crossfire, resulting in the company commander being put on trial. He doesn’t think he’s done anything wrong but if he tells the truth he could go to prison. An Oscar nominee for best foreign-language film. (Exclusively at the Broadway Centre Cinemas.)