Movies & TV

Bill Newcott is host of AARP's Movies for Grownups. He blogs about movies, television and all things entertainment.

Weekend Movie Choices Include New ‘Planet of the Apes’

Chimps will be champs at the box office this weekend. But a vengeful dad and four damaged friends are also vying for their share of summer moviegoers.   Dawn of the Planet of the Apes It’s been a decade or so since apes and humans reached a fragile peace. But the winds of war are whipping across San Francisco Bay, and despite the best efforts of a human-loving chimp named Caesar (Andy Serkis), a band of urban gorillas may be …

IPod + Alzheimer’s = Miracle! (Plus More New Documentaries)

  Alive Inside (Theaters, July 18) Can music do more to help Alzheimer’s patients than any medication? Dan Cohen, founder of the nonprofit Music & Memory, makes his case for the affirmative in this deeply moving film in which  patients-some of them unresponsive for years-flicker to life (and sometimes explode into song) the moment they hear music from their past. You’ll rush from the theater to buy an iPod for someone you know.     Life Itself (Theaters, July 4) …

Susan Sarandon: A Vulgar Grandma in ‘Tammy’

You know it’s a feel-good weekend at the movies when Melissa McCarthy and Susan Sarandon hit the road trip together and Keira Knightley sings Mark Ruffalo back from the brink of despair.   Tammy Melissa McCarthy must have realized she can’t base an entire name-above-the-title career on the loudmouth-lout character that earned her an Oscar nomination for Bridesmaids. So it’s a relief to see her soften up considerably in this appealing comedy: She plays an impulsive, aimless woman who, fired …

Transformers and Trains at the Movies This Weekend

It must be sci-fi weekend at the movies: Those presto-chango Transformers are back for a fourth time, but the grownup movie this weekend is from a noted Korean director, who offers his unusual tale of global-warming refugees stuck on the ultimate nonstop train.   Transformers: Age of Extinction Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci and Kelsey Grammer lend grownup presence to the latest toy-inspired Michael Bay heavy-metal fest, but when it comes to this series, there’s nothing more than meets the eye. …

‘Jersey Boys’ Headlines a Full Movie Weekend

Clint Eastwood and his Jersey boys cruise through the 1960s; Crash director Paul Haggis steers another star vehicle down the rough byways of love; and the Think Like a Man couples limo their way up the Vegas Strip during this something-for-everyone summer-movie weekend.   Jersey Boys Clint Eastwood‘s screen version of the smash Broadway musical tells the story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. The film revivifies most of the group’s big hits but avoids becoming a mere big-screen …

MFG Weekend Movie and Video Preview: June 13

Aside from a solemn family drama and a not-all-there sci-fi adventure, this might be the weekend to check out the summer movies you’ve missed in recent weeks.   Lullaby Richard Jenkins stars as a terminal cancer patient who, after 12 years of six-months-to-live prognoses, decides to pull his own plug. Into his hospital room troop his son (Garrett Hedlund), daughter (Jessica Brown Findlay of Downton Abbey) and their mother (Anne Archer) to share regrets and recriminations. Thanks to a terrific …