Your weekend preview: What to see (and what to skip) in theatres this weekend

Film of the year? For your consideration, we offer Parasite (Rating: A), Korean director Bong Joon-ho’s Cannes Palm d’Or winner, a dark comedy about a Korean family of grifters who insinuate themselves into the lives of a wealthy family. Compared to a slew of other films about rage at the one-percenters, says reviewer Jim Slotek, Parasite is “on another level, sure-handed and sly, with a moral compass that wavers as the tables turn.”

Have you heard? Parasite is the film of the year.

Have you heard? Parasite is the film of the year.

A decade after the zom-com, Zombieland, the cast – Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin – reunite in the loose, irreverent Zombieland: Double Tap (B), along with newcomer Zoey Deutch (Vampire Academy), who says Jim Slotek, “pretty much steals every scence she’s in.”

Netflix is better-known for standup specials for obscure comedians than Shakespeare, so it’s a welcome surprise to see the streaming service behind The King (B-minus), from director David Michôd and co-writer, actor Joel Edgerton. (B-minus).  

Adapted from the Shakespeare linked “Henriad” plays, the film  focuses on Prince Hal (Timothée Chalamet) who grows into the role of fifteenth-century warrior-king, Henry V. The film can be too effective in conveying the often boring slog of battle, says reviewer Karen Gordon, but this is a well-acted and thoughtful exploration of the reasons for war.

 There’s also lots of fighting in Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (C) which sees Angelina Jolie as the glamorous misunderstood “bad” fairy from Sleeping Beauty in an apocalyptic set-to with the fairy-hating human queen, Michelle Pfeiffer

Spectacular costumes and set-pieces aside, says reviewer Liam Lacey, Disney’s traditional fairy tale charm seems to have been cursed by the financial success of the Marvel Universe formula.

The battles are mostly psycholosgical in By The Grace of God (B-plus) a Berlin film festival prize-winning docudrama by France’s Francois Ozon. It’s a slow-burn procedural and study of three men, whose childhoods were scarred by a sexually-abusive priest. 

Confession and reconciliation are also the themes of  writer-director Warren Sulatycky’s April In Autumn (C plus), starring Caitlyn Sponheimer as a woman returning from an Asian sojourn to do more soul-searching in Toronto, all in a melancholic key.

Have a great weekend.