The Washington Post

‘Noah,’ ‘Le Week-End’ and other new movies, reviewed

In this week's new releases, Darren Aronofsky's adaptation of the biblical story of Noah, starring Russell Crowe; and the story of a married couple who travel to Paris to reignite the excitement in their relationship in “Le Week-End.”

After a biblical back story, Russell Crowe heeds his visions and gets to work in “Noah,” building a giant wooden ark to escape the coming floods and save his family and the world’s animals. (Niko Tavernise/AP)

 “Noah” (PG-13) “Be warned: Anyone familiar with the 500-year-old man and his ark may need to check some of their most cherished visualizations of him at the theater door. No cozy two-by-two images of beatific giraffes grace this ‘Noah.’ Like any good artist, Aronofsky has avoided predictable, literalist retellings of beloved Sunday school stories by inserting new characters, bringing parenthetical figures to the fore and making one of history’s most enduring and universal myths his very own.” – Ann Hornaday

 ½ “Le Week-End” (R) “Such a candid portrait of warts-and-all intimacy would be a slow, depressing slog were it not for the fact that it has been so gracefully executed: Roger Michell, known best for such sweet-natured romantic comedies as ‘Notting Hill,’ directs a script by the great Hanif Kureishi (‘My Beautiful Launderette’).”– Ann Hornaday

Cesar Chavez” (PG-13) “You don’t get to be the namesake of countless roads, schools, buildings and even a state holiday unless you’ve led a pretty exceptional life. So why does the biopic ‘Cesar Chavez’ make the folk hero seem like such a dull guy? That misfortune may not rank with the injustices Chavez spent his life fighting, but the movie does little to enhance the man’s legacy.” – Stephanie Merry

 “Ernest & Celestine” (PG) “More than the sound and look of ‘Ernest & Celestine,’ it’s the feelings the film explores that resonate. A talking bear and a mouse keeping house isn’t real, but their love surely feels like it is.” – Michael O'Sullivan

 ½ “Sabotage” (R) “Like most of (David) Ayer’s heroes, the ‘good guys’ are all flawed to varying degrees. One, played by Mireille Enos, is even a junkie. The rest are pretty much the kind of profane, sexist pigs who would make an NFL locker room look like a Boy Scout meeting.” – Michael O'Sullivan

 ½ “Big Men” (Unrated) “Wrangling so many stories and all of the necessary information into one documentary is an incredible feat, and editor Seth Bomse pieces it together in a way that’s both informative and surprisingly suspenseful as the discord between (Jim) Musselman, his investors and government officials in Ghana grows.” – Stephanie Merry

Honey” (R) “‘Honey’ is not a political film. Loosely based on a 2009 novel by Mauro Covacich, it doesn’t argue the ethics of Irene’s occupation, one way or the other. Rather, it’s interested in the compromises that must be made by those who, like Irene, live so close to death’s door.” – Michael O'Sullivan

 ½ “The Face of Love” (PG-13) “What could keep you going are the performances. (Annette) Bening and (Ed) Harris are great actors, and they fill their roles as completely as they can, given the limitations of the soggy and implausible script by Matthew McDuffie and director Arie Posin. They’re working as hard as they can to breathe life into this thing, but the patient is dead on arrival.” – Michael O'Sullivan

Macy L. Freeman is an editorial aide for the Weekend/Going Out Guide section at The Washington Post.



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