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10 must-see movies this Memorial Day weekend

From ‘Pirates of the Caribbean 5’ to ‘Colossal’

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With summer right around the corner, temperatures aren’t the only thing on the rise. A steady stream of new and holdover titles are waiting for you in the (cool, hopefully air-conditioned) darkness of your local movie theater. So, which ones should you see to escape the seasonal heat this the holiday weekend? Check out EW’s list of 10 movies to see this Memorial Day below.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

Starring: Johnny Depp, Javier Bardem, Geoffrey Rush

Directors: Joachim Rønning, Espen Sandberg

Rating: PG-13

EW’s review: “If only half that gorgeously detailed attention had gone toward the script: Instead, what we get is the usual mash of swashbuckling nonsense and soggy mythology: There will be romance, and revelations, and some silly gold-plated cameos (hello there, Sir Paul McCartney! And whoops, goodbye). Through it all, Norwegian duo Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg (the Oscar-nominated Kon-Tiki) feel less like directors than shepherds, carefully coloring inside the lines mapped out for them so thoroughly by a $4-billion-dollars-and-counting franchise. Recent reports say the cliffhanger ending is merely a setup for a sixth and final outing, which depends on any number of box-office contingencies — but mostly, of course, on whether Depp and Disney are able, or more likely willing, to make one last sunset sail.” B

Where to watch: In theaters, wide release

Baywatch

Starring: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Zac Efron, Priyanka Chopra

Director: Seth Gordon

Rating: R

EW’s review: “Back in 1995, The Brady Bunch Movie showed that there was a clever, postmodern way to turn our mothballed childhood memories into irreverent satire. But with the exception of the first 21 Jump Street, Hollywood seems to be beyond the point of putting any effort into these things. Aside from some mild laughs that come from the alpha-dog friction between Johnson and Efron, Damian Shannon and Mark Swift’s script is a lazy barrage of sad-trombone product-placement gags and red-band boobs-and-boners jokes. Perhaps even more depressing is the realization that this current retread plague won’t be ending anytime soon. Leaving the theater, I saw in my newsfeed that The CW had just greenlit a reboot of Dynasty. God help us all.” C

Where to watch: In theaters, wide release

Alien: Covenant

Starring: Katherine Waterston, James Franco, Michael Fassbender

Director: Ridley Scott

Rating: R

EW’s review: “One leg up that Covenant has is Scott’s refusal to entirely jettison the biblical weirdness of Prometheus. There’s still plenty of vague discussion about creation, but the movie is essentially a compromise between the prior film’s fans and haters. Some of us [clears throat] will miss those big swings, but regardless of where you landed with Prometheus, there’s bound to be something to delight you in Covenant because, Scott — thankfully — still makes ’em like he used to.” B+

Where to watch: In theaters, wide release

The Lovers

Starring: Debra Winger, Tracy Letts, Melora Walters

Director: Azazel Jacobs

Rating: R

EW’s review: “If you boil The Lovers down to its core, it’s a 94-minute affirmation of age-old mantras about the heart wanting what it wants. At times, its convictions are endearing and sweet and delightfully quirky—like a budding fling—but, at others, they’re as obtuse and frustrating and layered as a real-life search for a soul mate can be. Either way, the whole thing is rarely hard to embrace—warts and all—even if we’re not yet ready to say ‘I love you’ when the credits roll.” B

Where to watch: In theaters, limited release

Everything, Everything

Starring: Amandla Stenberg, Nick Robinson, Anika Noni Rose

Director: Stella Meghie

Rating: PG-13

EW’s review: “Yoon’s novel elaborated a bit more on how Maddy lives day-to-day with her disease, but the film is more interested in exploring her relationship with Olly (and, to a lesser extent, her relationship with her domineering mother). As a result, the plot sometimes threatens to veer into silly territory, requiring a little suspension of disbelief as the film moves into the final act. (How does a teenager who’s never left the house have the ID required to get through airport security?) But Maddy and Olly are so sweet and believable together that it’s easy to forgive some of the film’s soapier tendencies. You can’t help but root for these two crazy kids — and hope to see more teenagers on screen like them.” B+

Where to watch: In theaters, wide release

A Quiet Passion

Starring: Cynthia Nixon, Jennifer Ehle

Director: Terence Davies

Rating: PG-13

EW’s review: “Writer-director Davies (The House of Mirth) manages to capture at least some of the metaphysical swoon of Dickinson’s work in a series of beautifully composed images, which is a feat in itself. And Nixon vividly telegraphs both her character’s convictions and her deep physical and emotional suffering. But the movie is also hobbled by its insistent lack of naturalism; characters don’t so much engage each other as speechify in grand, self-aware paragraphs as if every dinner-table musing is being recorded for posterity. Though of course some of them will be, and that’s where A Quiet Passion finds its most transcendent moments: in the immortal, extraordinary verses Dickinson left behind.” B

Where to watch: In theaters, limited release

Colossal

Starring: Anne Hathaway, Jason Sudeikis, Tim Blake Nelson, Dan Stevens

Director: Nacho Vigalondo

Rating: R

EW’s review: “But it’s also a lot of fun to see Hathaway — she of the eternal, unshakeable theater-kid optimism — surrender to the dark side in what might be her best, bleakest role since her raccoon-eyed turn in 2008’s Rachel Getting Married. Her Gloria is basically a walking emotional hazmat zone: toxic, peevish, perpetually self-involved. (Jason Sudeikis is no peach either). But her mess feels real, unlike the manufactured naughtiness of most big-screen bad girls. And hopefully, her star power will bring more people to a movie whose marketing isn’t exactly made easy by a plot that sounds like a fridge-magnet poetry game gone wrong. Because in its own scrappy low-budget way, it’s worth it: Even if the script’s psychological reach ultimately falls short, Colossal is still a clever, comic, wildly surreal ride — right up until the last sucker-punch frame.” B+

Where to watch: In theaters, limited release

The Commune

Starring: Ulrich Thomsen, Fares Fares, Trine Dyrholm

Director: Thomas Vinterberg

Rating: PG-13

EW’s review: “For all its set-dressing of sexual awakenings and potluck dinner parties, The Commune is essentially a portrait of a marriage stretched to its breaking point; as Erik’s affair with a pretty, much-younger student (Helene Reingaard Neumann) moves to the center, the limits of the house’s breezy presumptions of freedom become clear, as does the reach of the collateral damage. (Men in general don’t come off well in Commune’s world; they’re mostly selfish, oblivious, or cruel. Its leading women, though, are gratifyingly layered). The movie may feel minor next to Vinterberg’s more serious work, but it’s more personal, too: A messy, tender window into the world that shaped him.” B+

Where to watch: In theaters, limited release

Wakefield

Starring: Bryan Cranston, Jennifer Garner, Beverly D’Angelo

Director: Robin Swicord

Rating: R

EW’s review: “What starts off as a temporary escape snowballs into something more permanent as days, weeks, then months pass, with Howard digging through the trash at night to survive as his family slowly learns to move on. Writer-director Robin Swicord, an Oscar nominee who co-wrote 2008’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, shows a real high-wire daring with the story’s tricky tone. But like Howard’s scheme, the film can’t quite figure how it’s supposed to end. Unfortunately, the answer is: not very convincingly. Until then, though, Cranston is utterly hypnotic as a certain kind of American male on the verge of a nervous breakdown.” B

Where to watch: In theaters, limited release

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 

Starring: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper

Director: James Gunn

Rating: PG-13

EW’s review: “Is it possible to be disappointed by a film and still manage to have a good time watching it? Absolutely. And Guardians Vol. 2 is Exhibit A of that. It’s smarter than most films, but not as smart as the first one. It’s funnier than most films, but not as funny as the first one. And it still probably belongs in the upper tier of Marvel movies but nowhere near as high up as the first one. Guardians Vol. 1was so original and unpredictable and irreverent and silly and sublime that Guardians Vol. 2 can’t help but feel like a step backwards. It’s a decent enough Marvel movie. But the original was a true lower-case-m marvel.” B–

Where to watch: In theaters, wide release