Spoiler Alert

Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAXDavenport IA

FilmScene, Iowa City IA

Marcus Sycamore CinemaIowa City IA

Putnam Museum & Science Center, Davenport IA

Regal MolineMoline IL

(Hyperlinked titles take you to Reader reviews; IMDb hyperlinks take you to the films’ Internet Movie Database pages.)

***

5,000 Blankets (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Marcus Sycamore Cinema: Monday, December 12, and Tuesday, December 13, 7 p.m.) - IMDb listing.

All That Breathes (not rated; FilmScene on the Ped Mall) - IMDb listing.

Amelie (R; FilmScene at the Chauncey: Sunday, December 11, 4 p.m.) - Lots of people love it, but I found this French phenomenon so coy, precious, and insistently in-your-face that I grew to hate it more and more with each new scene. IMDb listing.

Back from the Brink: Saved from Extinction (not rated; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - This edu-docu offers a chance, for 40 minutes, to actually feel momentarily great about the state of the human race. IMDb listing.

The Banshees of Inisherin (R; Regal Moline) - An absolutely delightful (if slightly grim) reunion for In Bruges co-stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson, and one that seems to boil Martin McDonagh's signature style down to its absolute essence – yet in unexpectedly tender fashion. IMDb listing.

Black Adam (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline) - From the exhausting, world-building voice-over at the start to the wholly anticipated climactic bit in which someone asks our costumed antihero “What should we call you?” and the film's title finally blasts on-screen, DC Studios' latest is a prototypical big-budget bummer. IMDb listing.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - Nearly everything directly concerning T'Challa's and Chadwick Boseman's absence is moving. It's nearly everything else, unfortunately, that goes wrong. IMDb listing.

Carol (R; FilmScene on the Ped Mall: Thursday, December 15, 7 p.m.) - With its loaded silences and nearly palpable yearning, Todd Haynes’ lesbian romance is a master class in tone. It’s a master class in just about everything, really. IMDb listing.

Christmas Bloody Christmas (not rated; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX) - IMDb listing.

Conan the Barbarian: 40th Anniversary (R; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline, Marcus Sycamore Cinema: Monday, December 12, and Tuesday, December 13) - IMDb listing.

Devotion (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - This Korean War drama may not be great, but it's a more-than-solid historical action drama with a lot of greatness in it, and it largely delivers the emotionalism you want without coming across as manipulative. IMDb listing.

Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas (PG; Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - As an adaptation of the wonderful children's book (and the classic 1966 animated film that followed), this holiday comedy is often woefully inept. IMDb listing.

Don't Open Till Christmas (R; FilmScene at the Chauncey: Wednesday, December 14, 10 p.m.) - IMDb listing.

Elf (PG; Regal Moline, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - Jon Favreau's Christmas-themed comedy is pleasant enough, but I would have enjoyed the film a lot more if it wasn't trying so hard to be a holiday blockbuster. IMDb listing.

Evangelion: 3.0 + 1.01 Thrice Upon a Time (not rated; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Marcus Sycamore Cinema: Sunday, December 11, 4 p.m.) - IMDb listing.

The Fabelmans (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, FilmScene at the Chauncey) - Beyond finding one in rare fits and spurts, anyone hoping for a more involving, more insightful, more honest telling of the Steven Spielberg tale than the corny one we're given here will have to look elsewhere.  IMDb listing.

Flight of the Butterflies (not rated; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - A bit pokey, but the slow, unspeakably beautiful explosion that is the butterflies' mass exodus is enough to make you believe in God - or, at the very least, in the gods of nature docs. IMDb listing.

HIT: The 2nd Chase (not rated; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX) - IMDb listing.

I Heard the Bells (not rated; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - IMDb listing.

The Inspection (R; FilmScene at the Chauncey) - IMDb listing.

Into America's Wild (not rated; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - IMDb listing.

Jerusalem (not rated; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - This visually spectacular, 45-minute edu-tainment on Israel's "cradle of civilization" is really quite a glorious piece of work. IMDb listing.

Journey to Space (not rated; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - Says narrator Patrick Stewart of the genial scientists on-screen, "It's all about getting the job done and having a little fun" - an apt description for this edu-doc itself. IMDb listing.

Kaluoka'hina: The Enchanted Reef (not rated; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - IMDb listing.

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile (PG; Regal Moline) - Is Academy Award winner Javier Bardem slumming in this visually bland, musically redundant family comedy? Absolutely. But he slums exquisitely.

Matilda: The Musical (PG; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX) - IMDb listing.

The Menu (R; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline, FilmScene at the Chauncey, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - The thrill and considerable comic charge of this pitch-black satire comes from unpeeling its figurative onion, discovering how and why the obscenely privileged, entitled, vacuous dinner guests are to receive their just desserts. IMDb listing.

The Met Opera: The Hours (not rated; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Marcus Sycamore Cinema: Saturday, December 10, 11:55 a.m.) - FathomEvents.com.

Naai Sekar Returns (not rated; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX) - IMDb listing.

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (PG-13; Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - IMDb listing.

National Parks Adventure (not rated; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - This expectedly gorgeous endeavor is also unexpectedly, even thrillingly, varied in presentation: sensationally informative, joyfully inspiring, and even laugh-out-loud funny. IMDb listing.

The Novelist's Film (not rated; FilmScene at the Chauncey) - IMDb listing.

Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood (R; FilmScene at the Chauncey: Tuesday, December 13, and Thursday, December 15, 7 p.m.) - For the first time since 1997's Jackie Brown, Quentin Tarantino's love for his characters feels as genuine as his love for the tricky, frequently nasty narrative contraptions he builds for them. IMDb listing.

Paddington (PG; FilmScene at the Chauncey) - I laughed so heartily and consistently at Paul King's superbly designed visual and verbal slapstick that I would've been embarrassed had other adults not been cackling just as hard. IMDb listing.

The Polar Express (G; Davnport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Putnam Museum & Science Center, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - After five blessedly quiet minutes, the 90 minutes that follow are a grating blend of the hyperactive and the maudlin, and any sweetness inherent in the Chris Van Allsburg children's book the movie is based on is totally lost. IMDb listing.

Spirited (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - At the end of A Christmas Carol, Scrooge requests that a local urchin procure the biggest turkey he can find. It may have taken 179 years, but I think the kid finally found it. IMDb listing.

Spoiler Alert (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - IMDb listing.

Strange World (PG; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline, FilmScene at theChauncey, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - Disney's animated adventure is so relentlessly, oppressively politically correct that, moments after seeing the film, I felt like I needed a six-hour FOX News binge just to rid myself of its effects. IMDb listing.

Superpower Dogs (G; Putnam Museum & Science Center) - Writer/director Daniel Ferguson provides enough globe-trotting action for a James Bond flick, and we're given just enough information on how the heroic pups pull off their feats of derring-do to wholly appreciate them in practice. IMDb listing.

Ticket to Paradise (PG-13; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline) - This comic travelogue is entirely The George and Julia Show, and as such, despite Clooney's and Roberts' inarguable gifts and obvious mutual affection, it's a largely unbearable one. IMDb listing.

To the End (R; FilmScene on the Ped Mall) - IMDb listing.

Violent Night (R; Davenport 53rd 18 + IMAX, Regal Moline, Marcus Sycamore Cinema) - Agree to its terms, and this bloody action comedy is 110 minutes of intermittent fun, complete with previously unimagined uses for strings of Christmas lights, snow blowers, and electrically illuminated tree toppers. IMDb listing.

Yeah Baby! The Complete Austin Powers (PG-13; FilmScene at the Chauncey: Saturday, December 10, 6:30 p.m.) - ICFilmScene.org.

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