Jeffrey M. Anderson

“The Croods: A New Age” is a pleasant sequel to 2013’s cartoon adventure about cave people. (Courtesy DreamWorks Animation)

New ‘Croods’ is colorful, comfy

But cartoon sequel is less funny than original

“The Croods: A New Age” is a pleasant sequel to 2013’s cartoon adventure about cave people. (Courtesy DreamWorks Animation)
“Home for the Holidays,” starring, from left, Charles Durning, Holly Hunter and Anne Bancroft, is a quintessential Thanksgiving movie. <ins>(Courtesy Paramount)</ins>

15 great Thanksgiving movies (and one turkey) to watch at home

While many families won’t be getting together during this pandemic Thanksgiving holiday,…

“Home for the Holidays,” starring, from left, Charles Durning, Holly Hunter and Anne Bancroft, is a quintessential Thanksgiving movie. <ins>(Courtesy Paramount)</ins>
Riz Ahmed, left, and Paul Raci are superb in the powerful “Sound of Metal.” <ins>(Courtesy Amazon Studios)</ins>

‘Sound of Metal’ tells an emotional story of deafness

Darius Marder’s debut feature has strong characters, performances

Riz Ahmed, left, and Paul Raci are superb in the powerful “Sound of Metal.” <ins>(Courtesy Amazon Studios)</ins>
Vince Vaughn, center, plays both a killer known as the Butcher and a high school student with whom he switches bodies, in “Freaky.”<ins>(Courtesy Brian Douglas/Universal)</ins>

Entertaining body-swapping ‘Freaky’ has scares and laughs

Gory flick with Friday the 13th release actually may calm some viewers

Vince Vaughn, center, plays both a killer known as the Butcher and a high school student with whom he switches bodies, in “Freaky.”<ins>(Courtesy Brian Douglas/Universal)</ins>
Angelina Jolie and David Oyelowo appear in “Come Away,” directed by Brenda Chapman. (Courtesy Hilary B. Gayle/SMPSP/Maginot Line, LLC)

Brenda Chapman takes to live action in ‘Come Away’

New Alice-Peter Pan fantasy has 21st century family

Angelina Jolie and David Oyelowo appear in “Come Away,” directed by Brenda Chapman. (Courtesy Hilary B. Gayle/SMPSP/Maginot Line, LLC)
Nat Wolff plays a young man with special powers in “Mortal,” a film by Norwegian director André Øvredal. (Courtesy Saban Films)

‘Mortal’ a sci-fi fantasy with a deep, dark hero

Nat Wolff stars as a Norwegian-American with issues

Nat Wolff plays a young man with special powers in “Mortal,” a film by Norwegian director André Øvredal. (Courtesy Saban Films)
Gillian Jacobs, left, and Azhy Robertson are good in the effective horror flick “Come Play.” (Courtesy Amblin/Focus Features)

Solid scares in ‘Come Play’

Impressive, well-made monster story is about loneliness

Gillian Jacobs, left, and Azhy Robertson are good in the effective horror flick “Come Play.” (Courtesy Amblin/Focus Features)
Octavia Spencer is delightful as the grandmother in “The Witches.” (Courtesy HBO Max)

‘The Witches’ is slight, bright Halloween entertainment

New take on Roald Dahl novel not quite comparable to Roeg’s version

Octavia Spencer is delightful as the grandmother in “The Witches.” (Courtesy HBO Max)
Rashida Jones and Bill Murray star in the delightful “On the Rocks.”<ins> (Courtesy A24)</ins>

‘On the Rocks’ a poetic, joyful screwball comedy

Sofia Coppola’s latest serves up laughter, warmth

Rashida Jones and Bill Murray star in the delightful “On the Rocks.”<ins> (Courtesy A24)</ins>
Liam Neeson makes an action hero soulful in the new “Honest Thief.” <ins>(Courtesy Open Road Films)</ins>

Liam Neeson’s primal in breezy ‘Honest Thief’

Acting veteran’s found his niche in action movies

Liam Neeson makes an action hero soulful in the new “Honest Thief.” <ins>(Courtesy Open Road Films)</ins>
Amanda Christine and Mamoudou Athie star in “Black Box.” (Courtesy Alfonso Bresciani /Amazon Studios)

Good jolts in Blumhouse flicks ‘Black Box,’ ‘The Lie’

Amazon Studios kicks off series of four genre films

Amanda Christine and Mamoudou Athie star in “Black Box.” (Courtesy Alfonso Bresciani /Amazon Studios)
Luke Hemsworth and Maggie Q appear in the effective horror thriller “Death of Me.” (Courtesy Saban Films)

B movie chiller ‘Death of Me’ makes most of mysterious vacation setting

‘Finding out what the heck happened’ flick has some good jolts

Luke Hemsworth and Maggie Q appear in the effective horror thriller “Death of Me.” (Courtesy Saban Films)
Gina Rodriguez, left, and Evan Rachel Wood appear in Miranda July’s appealing “Kajillionaire.” (Courtesy Focus Features)

‘Kajillionaire,’ ‘The Artist’s Wife,’ ‘Misbehaviour’

New films explore lives of interesting, powerful women

Gina Rodriguez, left, and Evan Rachel Wood appear in Miranda July’s appealing “Kajillionaire.” (Courtesy Focus Features)
Dacre Montgomery and Geraldine Viswanathan star in the appealing rom-com “The Broken Hearts Gallery.” (Courtesy Sony)
Dacre Montgomery and Geraldine Viswanathan star in the appealing rom-com “The Broken Hearts Gallery.” (Courtesy Sony)
“American Pathogen” shows footage of Donald Trump avoiding responsibility regarding the pandemic in news interviews. (Courtesy American Pathogen)

‘American Pathogen’ chronicles Trump’s catastrophic response to COVID-19

YouTube doc urges voters to consider president’s malfeasance around health crises

“American Pathogen” shows footage of Donald Trump avoiding responsibility regarding the pandemic in news interviews. (Courtesy American Pathogen)
From left, Samara Weaving, Brigette Lundy-Paine, Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter star in the fun and uplifting “Bill & Ted Face the Music.” (Courtesy Patti Perret/Orion Pictures)

‘Bill & Ted Face the Music’ unites in today’s terrifying, divided times

Worthy sequel evokes laughs, smiles, positive vibes

From left, Samara Weaving, Brigette Lundy-Paine, Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter star in the fun and uplifting “Bill & Ted Face the Music.” (Courtesy Patti Perret/Orion Pictures)
From left, Viraj Juneja, Lewis Gribben, Rian Gordon and Samuel Bottomley appear in “Get Duked!” a wacky comedy about delinquents in camping program who find themselves being hunted. (Courtesy Amazon Prime)

Exclamation nation with ‘Get Duked!,’ ‘Centigrade,’ ‘Mr. Soul!’

With big movies hard to see locally, here are three exciting alternatives

From left, Viraj Juneja, Lewis Gribben, Rian Gordon and Samuel Bottomley appear in “Get Duked!” a wacky comedy about delinquents in camping program who find themselves being hunted. (Courtesy Amazon Prime)
Jamie Foxx stars in the not entirely successful superhero movie “Project Power.” (Courtesy Skip Bolen/Netflix)

‘Project Power,’ ‘Spree,’ ‘Boys State,’ ‘Bombardier Blood,’ ‘Jazz on a Summer’s Day’

Two Hollywood movies, three documentaries will pump your adrenaline and tickle your brain

Jamie Foxx stars in the not entirely successful superhero movie “Project Power.” (Courtesy Skip Bolen/Netflix)
Romany Malco stars in, wrote and directed the appealing mockumentary “Tijuana Jackson: Purpose Over Prison.” (Courtesy photo)

New on demand: ‘Tijuana Jackson,’ ‘The Fight,’ ‘Around the Sun’

Digital films explore those trying to help and those just trying to figure it all out

Romany Malco stars in, wrote and directed the appealing mockumentary “Tijuana Jackson: Purpose Over Prison.” (Courtesy photo)
Petr Kotlár portrays a nameless child who encounters myriad atrocities in “The Painted Bird,” based on the novel by Jerzy Kosinski. (Courtesy IFC Films)

War or horror in ‘Painted Bird,’ ‘Ghosts of War,’ ‘Carmilla’

Films set in the past deliver scares yet are rich with empathy

Petr Kotlár portrays a nameless child who encounters myriad atrocities in “The Painted Bird,” based on the novel by Jerzy Kosinski. (Courtesy IFC Films)