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  • Taron Egerton stars as Gary Unwin and Colin Firth as...

    20th Century Fox

    Taron Egerton stars as Gary Unwin and Colin Firth as Harry Hart in "Kingsman: The Secret Service," in theaters Feb. 13.

  • Jamie Dornan, left, and Dakota Johnson appear in a scene...

    Universal Pictures and Focus Features

    Jamie Dornan, left, and Dakota Johnson appear in a scene from "Fifty Shades of Grey," in theaters Feb. 13.

  • Clark Duke, Adam Scott and Craig Robinson star in "Hot...

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    Clark Duke, Adam Scott and Craig Robinson star in "Hot Tub Time Machine 2," in theaters Feb. 20.

  • Mary Elizabeth Winstead stars in "Faults," in theaters March 6.

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    Mary Elizabeth Winstead stars in "Faults," in theaters March 6.

  • Olivia Wilde stars in "The Lazarus Effect," in theaters Feb....

    Daniel McFadden / Relativity Media

    Olivia Wilde stars in "The Lazarus Effect," in theaters Feb. 27.

  • Rinko Kikuchi stars in "Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter," in theaters...

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    Rinko Kikuchi stars in "Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter," in theaters March 18.



If you like schmaltzy, insipid or socially irresponsible films, springtime is your jam, friendo. This is when Hollywood dumps its worst stuff into theatres. You won’t find much in the way of Oscar fodder in the spring, but if you’re a fan of horror, rom-coms or zombie-beaver films, you’re in luck.

Below is just a taste of what’s coming to screens over the next few months — well, at least the ones that aren’t so far down on the “Limited Release List” that you’ll have to drive to a coast to watch them.

Be aware: release dates are subject to change.



“Ballet 422”

PG | Documentary

Jody Lee Lipas’ documentary takes us behind the scenes at the New York City Ballet to witness the creation and world premier of 25-year-old rising choreographer, Justin Peck, as he creates Paz de la Jolla, the prestigious company’s 422nd original ballet.

“Jupiter Ascending”

PG-13 | Sci-Fi

Lowly janitor, Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis), discovers extraterrestrials exist, she’s the rightful heir to earth and that an alien businessman (Eddie Redmayne) and the Queen of the Universe want her dead. So, kind of a big day. Thankfully, the alien bounty hunter (Channing Tatum) sent to kill her changes his mind. This flick marks a return to original sci-fi screenplays by Matrix franchise creators, Andy and Lana Wachowski, and is slated as the first in a trilogy. [Insert “Uranus Ascending” joke here.]

“One Small Hitch”

NR | Romance

Childhood friends, Molly (Aubrey Dollar) and Josh Shiffman (Shane McRae), are headed back to Chicago for Molly’s mom’s wedding when Josh discovers his father is dying. His father’s only regret is he never met the woman Josh would marry. So Josh tells his dad it’s Molly, and Molly gets SO mad about that, but then…I’ll give you one guess what happens next.

“Seventh Son”

PG-13 | Adventure, Fantasy

Based on the first of Joseph Delany’s “The Wardstone Chronicles,” Sergey Bodrov directs the story of young Tom (Ben Barnes) who, because he’s the seventh son of a seventh son, possesses the power to see and fight evil spirits. His mom (Olivia Williams) sends him to apprentice with the local magician (Jeff Bridges), and while The Dude is out, Tom releases a terrible witch (Julianne Moore.) (So I guess in this one, Moore is NOT Bridges’ special lady friend.) Stars Djimon Hounsou, and the production team that brought us the most recent “Godzilla.” At the very least, the movie will look great.

“The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water”

PG | Animated

A supervillain’s stolen the secret recipe for Krabby Patties and all hell breaks loose in the underwater city of Bikini Bottom. “Welcome to the apocalypse,” says Mr. Krabs, dressed as Mad Max. “I hope you like leather.” SpongeBob SquarePants and friends go topside to solve the trouble, and somehow become human-sized superheroes. Definitely a pot film.

Feb. 13

“Fifty Shades of Grey”

R | Drama

No idea what this book was about; I only ready the dirty parts. I can say there’s a rich dude (Jamie Dornan) who’s into BDSM chasing a mousy girl (Dakota Johnson) and then they get it on. This isn’t something I wanna watch with my gramma or my girlfriends, and if John Oliver won’t watch it with me, then I’ll skip it altogether. #notmychristian

“Kingsman: The Secret Service”

R | Action

Based on Mark Millar and Dave Gibbons’ comic book series, “The Secret Service,” this movie focuses on a veteran spy (Colin Firth) who recruits his nephew, Eggsy (Targon Egerton) into the independent secret service team for which he works. One of their missions is the rescue of Mark Hamill (yes, Luke Skywalker) from a remote villa in Switzerland. Also stars Michael Caine, Samuel L. Jackson and Mark Strong. Directed by Matthew Vaughn, who directed the solid crime thriller “Layer Cake.”

“The Last 5 Years”

PG-13 | Musical

Based on Jason Robert Brown’s musical, Richard “P.S. I Love You” LaGravenese’s film follows a couple as they meet-cute, fall in love, get married, begin to disintegrate and finally divorce. But Cathy’s (Anna Kendrick) plotline is told in reverse, starting with the divorce and moving backwards, while Jamie’s (Jeremy Jordan) is told start to finish. The plotlines cross in the middle during the wedding. Also, there’s a lot of singing.

Feb. 20

“Hot Tub Time Machine 2”

R | Comedy

Lou “Father of the Internet” (Rob Corddry) is assassinated, forcing the boys (Adam Scott, Craig Robinson and Clark Duke) to hop back into the hot tub time machine and save him. And then they do a little time-hopping. Then Robinson sings a Lisa Loeb song. Chevy Chase is in the flick, too, but no John Cusack this soak around.

“McFarland, USA”

PG | Drama

Kevin Costner plays a new coach at McFarland High School, a place where many kids work on nearby farms before and after school. Noticing some of them are excellent runners, Coach White creates a cross-country team and leads them to a championship. Directed by Niki Caro, who received an academy award nomination for “Whale Rider” in 2002.

“The Duff”

PG-13 | Comedy

DUFF stands for “Designated Ugly Fat Friend,” a term applied to the least-attractive girl in a group of girlfriends. In this movie, a “douchebag” (that’s a term applied to douchebags) informs Bianca (Mae Whitman) that in her group, she is the DUFF. Then said douchebag (Robbie Amell) agrees to help her raise her mojo and takes her shopping, tells her about this mystical thing called “confidence” and later decides he’s in love with her. You didn’t ask, but films like this are socially irresponsible and I’ll be a monkey’s uncle before I take any of my goddaughters to see this.

Feb. 27


R | Drama

Will Smith plays Nicky, a long-time grifter who takes on a hottie (Margot Robbie) as an apprentice and partner. But like virtually every grifter film I’ve ever seen, this one has Nicky letting down his guard and falling for his helper elf, while letting the big deal that they’re embroiled in go sideways fast.

“Maps to the Stars”

R | Drama

David Cronenberg directs Bruce Wagner’s screenplay dealing with the tangled mess of a Hollywood family, their hangers-on and the ghosts of their past. Stars Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson, John Cusack, Evan Bird and Olivia Williams.

“The Lazarus Effect”

PG-13 | Horror

Mark Duplass, Olivia Wilde, Donald Glover and a few other scientists work on a super-sketchy project — resurrecting the dead. They start with a dog, and that doesn’t go well, as the dog in turn wants to eat their faces off. But then Ms. Wilde dies in an accident and Duplass brings her back. “But what does she bring back?” you ask. She brings back hell, friends. She brings back hell.


March 6


NR | Action

In what appears to be a mash-up of “Robocop” and “Short Circuit,” Dev Patel (who plays Neal Sampat on “The Newsroom”) creates a cop/robot with a conscience. This pisses Hugh Jackman off because his robot/man teams will become defunct. Sigourney Weaver is also concerned, probably because she’s seen all the “Terminator” films. All kidding aside, this is from writer/director Neill Blomkamp, the wunderkind behind “District 9.”

“The Coup”

R | Thriller

Info’s short on this one, but essentially an American family is abroad, there’s a coup and foreigners are being executed. I’ll be skipping this, even if it does have Pierce Brosnan, Lake Bell and Owen Wilson.

“The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel”

PG | Comedy

Dev Patel stars again as Sonny, a delightful Indian dude hell-bent on expanding his “Hotel for the Elderly and Beautiful” into possible chains. The romance continues between Bill Nighy and Judi Dench, and new possibilities are at hand for Maggie Smith, Penelope Wilton, David Strathairn, Celia Imrie, Ronald Pickup and Richard Gere (who starts hitting on Sonny’s mom) — all while Sonny prepares for his lavish, traditional wedding. The big Indian dance scene better be up to Bollywood standards.

“Unfinished Business”

R | Comedy

Vince Vaughn is a big ol’ business man starting his own company with two doofus employees (Tom Wilkinson and Dave Franco — yes, he’s James’ little bro). The three head off to Germany to win a contract that will position them for success, but first they’ve gotta beat the company they just quit and the bitchy bosslady (Sienna Miller) who fired them. That’s neat. Gonna be super fair and feminist, I bet.


NR | Drama

Mary Elizabeth Winstead plays a doe-eye dummy who joins a cult, upsetting her parents, who hire a mind-control expert to fish her out. On the one hand, it stars Beth Grant and Lance Reddick, who are incredible, but on the other I still don’t wanna drink this Kool-Aid.

March 13

“Cinderella (2015)”

PG | Adventure

Disney’s remaking its classic animated film into a live-action flick, starring Lily James as Cinderella, Cate Blanchett as the evil stepmother, Sophie McShera and Holliday Grainger as the stepsisters, Richard Madden as the handsome prince, Helena Bonham Carter as the fairy godmother, and me as “Sir Not Attending This Film.”

“Run All Night”

R | Action

Here’s the deal: Ed Harris sends his son to assassinate Liam Neeson’s son (Joel Kinnaman, who was amazing in “The Killing.”) But Kinnaman offs Harris’ kid first. So now Harris wants the entire Neeson clan murdered, which means Neeson and Kinnaman have to spend an entire evening taking out Harris and his people. Also stars Vincent D’Onofrio, Common and Genesis Rodriguez.

March 18

“Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter”

NR | Drama

Despite the accolades it’s already garnered, it’s likely David and Nathan Zellner’s film will only see a limited release. Still, the premise alone makes the film worth hunting down: Kumiko (Rinko Kikuchi) is an isolated twenty-something in Tokyo who hates her job, her rich peers, her mother’s non-stop nagging, her disgusting boss and pretty much everything else except the Coen brothers’ film, “Fargo.” (I’ve been there, girl.) Slightly off her rocker, Kumiko decides “Fargo” is a documentary and sets off to Minnesota to find the money hidden in the snow. Kumiko might be nuts, but she’s a badass.

March 20


PG-13 | Sci-Fi

In Numero Dos of the “Divergent” series, Tris (Shailene Woodley) and Four (Theo James) must fight evil Jeanine (Kate Winslet), figure out what the people of Abnegation sacrificed themselves for and save the world. Robert Schwentke takes over as director from Neil Burger, and Octavia Spencer and Naomi Watts join the cast as Johanna and Evelyn, respectively.

“The Gunman”

R | Action, Crime, Thriller

Sean Penn plays a morally ambivalent spy/assassin (I understand that could sound redundant.) ANYWAY, he tries to “right some wrongs” but only lands himself and his pretty French girlfriend into serious trouble with the folks who once employed him, and also Javier Bardem. Now he must choose between death or putting the whole system on trial. Look. I know this is going to be well acted, but the premise here has been done a zillion times.


PG-13 | Action

Three things: Taylor Lautner plays a bike messenger wanted by the mafia. He crashes into a hot girl (Marie Avgeropoulos) who’s super into parkour. They become robbers. TANGENT: If you turn the lights off in your bathroom and shout, “PARKOUR!” exactly three times, when you open your eyes, your roommate will have already called the police.


NR | Horror (Comedy)

Pretty people who clearly hate shirts decide to take a cabin trip to a lake where the beavers are zombies. I’m not sure what else is needed here..? It’s directed by Jordan Rubin..?

March 27

“Get Hard”

R | Comedy

Richie-rich captain of industry James King (Will Ferrell) is busted on fraud and embezzlement charges and, faced with 10 years in a maximum-security prison, turns to his one-time valet, Darnell (Kevin Hart) to help him “get hard” enough to survive inside. It’s gonna be dopey, dumb, possibly offensive and fill the theaters.

“Home (2015)”

PG | Animated

A socially inept alien (voiced by Jim Parsons) takes over earth on his own, making friends with a cat lady (Rihanna.) When the rest of the aliens show up to finish the job, the two of them save everyone while learning the lesson that being weird makes you special.

“While We’re Young”

R | Comedy

Naomi Watts and Ben Stiller star as a middle-aged couple considering having a baby who, after meeting a couple in their mid-20s (Amanda Seyfried and Adam Driver), decide they’d rather go a little wild first. Anything written and directed by Noah Baumbach is typically worth the watch.


April 3

“Furious 7”

PG-13 | Action

Vin Diesel gathers his buddies and cars and boobies and guns, seeking revenge on the bastard that killed his brother. Jason Statham joins the mix.

April 10

“Desert Dancer”

PG-13 | Drama

This is like “Footloose,” but instead of taking place in a weird little American town that’s decided to ban dancing, it takes place in Iran, in 2009, during a dangerous presidential election. And instead of Kevin Bacon as a rebellious teen, you get Reece Ritchie playing Afshin Ghaffarian, a real man hell-bent on creating an underground dance company. And then instead of potentially getting in a little trouble and not being able to date the preacher’s daughter, Afshin risks imprisonment and death. So, not like “Footloose” at all.

April 17

“Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2”

PG | Comedy

Kevin James is back, this time headed to Vegas to attend a security guard expo, which if memory serves, is the sixth ring of hell in Dante’s “Inferno.” He discovers a heist and must stop it. You could watch this, or you could spend 90 minutes poking yourself in the eye with a pen — your call.

“A Little Chaos”

NR | Drama

This is Alan Rickman’s second stab at directing a film he co-wrote (this time with Jeremy Brock and Alison Deegan.) It stars Kate Winslet as a landscape architect who wins the bid to install the gardens at Versailles, which means she’s mixing with King Louis XIV (also Rickman), various folks in his court, (Stanley Tucci, Jennifer Ehle, Phyllida Law, Helen McCrory, etc.) and Andre Le Notre (Matthias Schoenaerts), a married man with whom she falls madly in love. The settings and costuming will be beautiful, but I fear the romantic plotline could be overwrought.

“Child 44”

NR | Thriller

This flick is based on the first novel of Tom Rob Smith’s popular trilogy about a Russian agent (Tom Hardy) investigating a serial killer in Stalin’s Moscow. The killer preys upon children, and Agent Leo Demidov (Hardy) insists on tracking the perp down after a friend’s kid joins the list of victims. Swede, Daniel “Safe House” Espinosa, directs, Ridley Scott produced.

“Monkey Kingdom”

NR | Documentary

If you like monkeys, mom monkeys, baby monkeys, monkey fights, monkeys packing their stuff and moving, and south Asia, you’re in luck.

April 24

“Little Boy”

PG-13 | Drama

Pepper Busbee (Jakob Salvati) loves his father (Michael Rapaport) and the wild imagination games they play together. When Dad is sent off to World War II, Pepper is heartbroken. At a magic show, the kid is tricked into believing he’s moved a bottle with his mind and decides this newfound power will bring his dad home. The word “comedy” is being attached here, but I recommend a full box of Kleenex anyhow. Also stars Emily Watson and Kevin James. James’ agent is probably happy this is coming out after the “Mall Cop” movie.

“The Age of Adaline”

NR | Drama

Adeline (Blake Lively), who was born in 1908, crashed her car into a river and was struck by lightning simultaneously in 1935. Somehow, this makes her impervious to aging.Throughout the years, she watches her children grow old and die, and lives a very long and lonely life as a forever hottie. UNTIL! She meets a beautiful bearded dude named Ellis (Michiel Huisman) and decides he’s worth giving up immortality. Apparently her beard goggles are as bad as mine.

Jeanine Fritz:

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