Capsule Movie Reviews (July 3): 'Wrinkles' and four more
NR, 1 HR., 20 MINS.
Directed by Ignacio Ferreras, a disciple of Sylvain Chomet (The Triplets of Belleville), and dubbed into English from Spanish, this animated gem tells a story of friendship in an old folks’ home. Emilio (Martin Sheen) is dumped there by his son after one too many senior moments, while Miguel (George Coe), a white-haired Randle McMurphy, cuts deals and runs the joint. The animation artfully transitions between what is real and what the aging residents think is real. Rare is the “cartoon” that penetrates and even haunts; Wrinkles is not easily forgotten. (Available on iTunes and VOD July 15) A- —Jeff Labrecque
Bound by Flesh
NR, 1 HR., 30 MINS.
In the 1920s, Daisy and Violet Hilton were one of the most popular acts in vaudeville. They were charming and pretty, and could play a host of instruments. What really set them apart, though, was that they were conjoined twins, attached back-to-back. Leslie Zemeckis’ documentary about their curious and ultimately sad lives is a fascinating snapshot of the era of nickel-a-peek circus sideshows. It’s also an unexpectedly touching tale: Late in life when they were asked by a doctor if they wanted to be separated, they said they did not. (Also available on VOD) B —Chris Nashawaty
Earth to Echo
PG, 1 HR., 29 MINS.
Three boys from a Nevada suburb find a chirping chunk of space junk in this anemic entry in the WWSSD (What Would Steven Spielberg Do?) subgenre. The mildewed found-footage technique allows some tension to build from offscreen action, but also renders the knockoff John Williams score inexplicable. And incessant exclamations about the unbreakable bond of friendship are only interesting given that Earth to Echo‘s original studio, Disney, was evidently not moved by all the loyalty hokum and pawned off the finished movie to the highest bidder. C- —Joe McGovern
Me and You
NR, 1 HR., 27 MINS.
Bernardo Bertolucci has made plenty of films that are decidedly not for children (Last Tango in Paris, for instance, or The Dreamers). But his latest could almost be considered YA. In this chamber drama, a teenage social misfit pretending to be on a ski trip hides from his parents in the basement of his apartment building. There, he crosses paths with his half sister, a heroin junkie using the space to detox. The movie is slight but observant and not nearly as maestro-batory as some of Bertolucci’s other work. B —Keith Staskiewicz
NR, 1 HR., 47 MINS.
The few Israeli films that find their way to U.S. theaters tend to focus on the ongoing war between Jews and Palestinians. Director Nadav Lapid’s debut bucks expectations by showing us a threat from within. The slow-building import nicely captures the macho, band-of-brothers bond of one Israeli counter-terrorism unit before it’s called in to rescue wedding guests taken hostage by Jewish leftists waging class war. But that’s the only spark this otherwise chilly and remote film has to offer. B- —Chris Nashawaty