At the Movies: December 16

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, La La Land, Collateral Beauty

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This week at the movies: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story; La La Land; and Collateral Beauty.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

In a time of conflict, a group of unlikely heroes band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire's ultimate weapon of destruction. This key event in the Star Wars timeline brings together ordinary people who choose to do extraordinary things, and in doing so, become part of something greater than themselves. Starring Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Mads Mikkelson, Donnie Yen, and Forest Whitaker.

Rated PG-13. Directed by Gareth Edwards. Action/Sci-Fi. 2h 13m.

What the Critics Say:

“The cast is wonderful. Felicity Jones is a fine addition to the ‘Star Wars’ tradition of tough-minded, quick-thinking heroines.” – The NYTimes

“This is a movie made for fans… there are two more Star Wars Stories already on the calendar. And giddy fans like me will gobble it with extra butter.” – The Guardian

Our Take: Star Wars fans: brace yourselves. This film is going to be out of this world (literally) and is definitely worth seeing in 3D! May the force be with you…

La La Land

The story of Mia (Emma Stone), an aspiring actress, and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), a dedicated jazz musician, struggling to make ends meet while pursuing their dreams in a city known for destroying hopes and breaking hearts. With modern day Los Angeles as the backdrop, this musical about everyday life explores what is more important: a once-in-a-lifetime love or the spotlight. Also starring John Legend.

Rated PG-13. Directed by Damien Chazelle. Drama/Romance. 2h 8m.

What the Critics Say:

“The real tension in ‘La La Land’ is between ambition and love, and perhaps the most up-to-date thing about it is the way it explores that ancient conflict.” – The NYTimes

“‘La La Land’ isn't a masterpiece (and on some level it wants to be). Yet it's an elating ramble of a movie, ardent and full of feeling, passionate but also exquisitely controlled.” – Variety

Our Take: Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling light up the screen once again with their sparkling on screen-chemistry; this movie looks as cute as it is critically acclaimed. And the Oscar goes to…

Collateral Beauty

When a successful New York advertising executive (Will Smith) suffers a great tragedy, he retreats from life. While his concerned friends try desperately to reconnect with him, he seeks answers from the universe by writing letters to Love, Time and Death. When his notes bring unexpected personal responses, he begins to understand how these constants interlock in a life fully lived and how even the deepest loss can reveal moments of meaning and beauty. Also starring Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley, Helen Mirren, Jacob Latimore, and Edward Norton.

Rated PG-13. Directed by David Frankel. Drama. 1h 37m.

What the Critics Say:

“Nakedly sentimental and obsessed with its own gravity, Collateral Beauty is certainly a goofy film… Add [the] cozy and sophisticated sheen of Manhattan at Christmastime, and you have something that is firmly up my alley. What can I say, we all have our weak spots.” – Vanity Fair

Our Take: If you’re in the mood for something emotionally touching and stars a stellar cast, then Collateral Beauty is the perfect slice of sentimental cinema for you this weekend.