Fast-paced, violent anime adventure builds to epic battle.
“Dragon Ball Super: Broly” is based on the (dubbed) Japanese anime adventure series. Following the origins of fan-favorite character Broly, the movie also features protagonist Goku and regulars such as Vegeta and Bulma, as well as the evil Frieza. The story includes lots of violence; nearly a third of the movie consists of a superlong fight between Broly and Goku/Vegeta. In addition to the many scenes of hand-to-hand combat, there’s also mass genocidal destruction, sparring, murder and deadly weapon use. Language includes occasional insults like “b------,” “moron,” “idiot” and “dumba--,” but there’s no sex — just hyper-muscled male characters (who are often shirtless) and curvy, cleavage-sporting female characters. Amid all the fighting, the importance of teamwork, self-control and courage are explored. (140 minutes)
Gentle, affectionate portrait of aging legendary comics.
“Stan & Ollie” is a biopic about legendary comics Stan Laurel (Steve Coogan) and Oliver Hardy (John C. Reilly) that focuses on the time near the end of their careers, as they went on a tour of Britain and Ireland. It helps if viewers already know the duo’s work — “The Music Box” (1932), “Sons of the Desert” (1933) and “Way Out West” (1937) are highly recommended — but there’s enough funny stuff here to hopefully appeal to newcomers, too. And overall, it’s a sweet, gentle movie that’s funny and touching. Expect some slapstick violence — such as falling or throwing things — and some arguing. Language includes a use of “damn” and a use of “smart-
a--.” Married couples kiss and snuggle in bed, and divorce is mentioned. Cigarette smoking is fairly prevalent (accurate for the era), as is social drinking. Drinking is referred to as something that’s potentially bad, and wives try to keep husbands from doing it. (97 minutes)
Violence, peril in flawed but enjoyable trilogy finale.
“Glass” is the third part of an intense trilogy that writer/director M. Night Shyamalan began with 2000’s “Unbreakable” and continued in 2017’s “Split.” The story line focuses on the existence of super-beings and what that might mean for the world. Expect strong violence, with lots of fighting, punching, smashing, slamming and crushing. Characters are killed via throat-slashing, drowning, bullets and more. After defeating a foe, a character makes eating sounds off-screen and then emerges with blood on his mouth. Characters are in peril for brief periods throughout the film, and there’s some discussion of children being abused by adults. Kissing is mentioned, but otherwise sex isn’t an issue. Language is infrequent but includes uses of “s---,” “a--,” “b----” and “p---y.” The movie has its flaws, but it’s surprisingly satisfying, and fans will probably get a kick out of it. Bruce Willis, James McAvoy and Samuel L. Jackson star. (129 minutes)
Compelling, dramatic, dark miniseries is very violent.
“Watership Down” is an animated miniseries based on Richard Adams’s powerful, violent book about rabbits who are forced to flee their home and battle many adversaries (it was previously adapted into a movie in 1978). There are long scenes of fighting among rabbits and between them and menacing predators; some characters suffer and die. Many enemies first pose as friends to win trust that they can later manipulate, and humans are mostly cast as the ultimate evil. Most of the violence erupts among animals, but one particularly tense scene shows a man shooting at rabbits, leaving a main character wounded. Expect strong language (“hell” and “damn”) in a couple of dramatic moments and a range of human emotions (love, attraction, fear, grief) portrayed by the sympathetic animal characters. This story’s themes are likely to inspire discussions about everything from personal liberty to comparative governing structures. (Four hour-long episodes)
Available via Netflix streaming.
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