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A wartime romance, jealous ex-wife and cute wild animals are among what’s hitting theaters this weekend in The Promise, Unforgettable and Born in China. Also releasing is Brie Larson and an all-star cast in Free Fire, as well as the documentaries Citizen Jane: Battle for the City and The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki.
Read on to find out what The Hollywood Reporter‘s critics are saying about the weekend’s new offerings (as well as which film will likely top the weekend box office).
Christian Bale and Oscar Isaac star in the Armenian genocide drama where an Armenian medical student and an American journalist both fall in love with the same woman (played by Charlotte Le Bon). THR critic John DeFore writes of director Terry George’s period film that earned a screening at the Vatican: “This will not enjoy the critical support given to George’s Hotel Rwanda; compared to that flawed but affecting picture, this one looks like it was stamped by a cookie cutter.” Read the full review here.
Citizen Jane: Battle for the City
A story of what happens when citizens fight back for the betterment of their society is documented in Citizen Jane. Matt Tyrnauer’s doc chronicles journalist/ social activist Jane Jacobs who challenged and defeated New York City urban planner Robert Moses’ plans to tear down city neighborhoods to make room for large housing projects and superhighways. The bottom line, according to THR critic Frank Scheck, is that the film is a “compelling account of successful community organizing.” Read the full review here.
The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki
A rising small-town Finnish boxer with an opportunity to win the 1962 featherweight championship title grapples with balancing his professional and personal life as he finds himself falling in love. THR critic David Rooney writes that the black and white film is a “knockout.” Rooney adds, “So gracefully does The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki sidestep the formulaic mold of struggle, perseverance and simple victory or defeat that it could almost be considered an anti-fight picture. Either way, the film’s delicate balance of humor, melancholy and sensitive human insight should ensure that it goes a few rounds on international specialty screens.” Read the full review here.
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