“Shazam!” (PG-13) “Shazam!” is what would happen if a kid like the one from “Big” turned into a superpowered Zachary Levi instead of Tom Hanks. But at least in this he can transform back and forth between bodies just by repeating the magic word. Some of you might remember that Zachary played the Asgardian warrior Fandral in two of the “Thor” movies. But he was able to make the jump to DC because his character was killed off in “Thor: Ragnarok”. That bothered him at first, but now he says it was a blessing because it freed him from his Marvel contract to become Shazam.
In this movie he starts out as a kid named Billy Batson. Once Billy becomes Shazam, he recruits his foster brother to have a little fun and help him figure out his new powers.
It’s directed by David Sandberg, whose horror credits include “Annabelle: Creation”, but it’s basically a coming of age comedy that’s refreshingly lighthearted compared to the rest of the movies in the DC Extended Universe. Billy’s played by Asher Angel from the Disney series “Andi Mack”, and the foster brother is Jack Dylan Grazer, who you may remember as Eddie in the remake of Stephen King’s “It”.
“Pet Sematary” (R) Jason Clarke and John Lithgow star in this remake of the Stephen King horror classic about a hidden cemetery that can bring things back from the dead. His daughter’s cat dies shortly after they move in to their new home, so Jason’s character follows his neighbor out to a Native American burial ground where they resurrect an evil version of it. Even though the cat is clearly NOT the same anymore, he still ignores Lithgow’s warnings and decides to use the cemetery again after one of his kids is killed. Now this part’s a bit of a spoiler, but I’m sure you caught it in the trailer . . . In the book and the 1989 movie, it’s his son Gage who dies. In the remake it’s the daughter Ellie. Stephen King is okay with that change though, and he thinks the remake is, quote, “[Effing] great.”
“The Best of Enemies” (PG-13) This might sound made up, but it’s actually based on a true story. Taraji P. Henson plays civil rights activist Ann Atwater and Sam Rockwell is C.P. Ellis, a violent leader of the Ku Klux Klan in 1971 North Carolina. After an electrical fire destroyed an all-black school, the racist Ellis agreed to co-chair a community meeting with her to help “solve” the problem of peacefully integrating black and white students while secretly hoping to keep segregation alive. But by the end of their 10th meeting, she’d shattered his ignorance about black people and actually inspired him to turn his back on the Klan and stand up for civil rights.
“The Public” is written, directed by and stars Emilio Estevez as a librarian who gets in a police stand-off after he sides with a group of homeless people who’ve decided to illegally turn his library into an emergency winter shelter. Alec Baldwin, Jena Malone, Taylor Schilling, and Gabrielle Union are also in it.
“High Life” stars Robert Pattinson as a convict aboard a ship sent to do science experiments near a black hole. Andre 3000 has a small role as one of the prisoners, and Juliette Binoche is a doctor doing secret fertility experiments on them.