Two nature documentaries debut this weekend: "Chimpanzee," the latest DisneyNature production, which takes stunning footage and grafts it to a dumbed-down storyline (narrated dopily by Tim Allen); and "To the Arctic," a beautifully shot (in IMAX) look at polar bears and other animals trying to survive the effects of global climate change.
The highlight of the art-house list is "The Deep Blue Sea," director Terence Davies' gorgeous and stately adaptation of Terrence Rattigan's play in which a woman (Rachel Weisz) abandons her husband, a prominent judge (Simon Russell Beale), for her lover, a former RAF pilot (Tom Hiddleston), in 1950 London. Davies' well-composed scenes, and the powerhouse acting (particularly by Weisz), bring out the raw emotions of Rattigan's tale of love and loss.
"Footnote," one of this year's nominees for the foreign-language Oscar, is a wry comedy from Israel about a rivalry between father-and-son Talmud scholars (Shlomo Bar-Aba and Lior Ashkenazi) - and what happens when the father, long neglected by the establishment, receives a major award. Writer-director Joseph Cedar finds gentle laughs and some genuine pathos in this story of pride and resentment.
Brewvies Cinema Pub is screening the comedy "Goon," which boasts a delightful performance by Seann William Scott as Doug "The Thug" Glatt, a Beantown bar bouncer whose talent for beating people up gets him a slot as enforcer on a minor-league hockey team. The script by Jay Baruchel (who co-stars as Doug's profane friend) and Evan Goldberg ("Superbad") is a mess, but the performances by Scott and Liev Schreiber (as a veteran bruiser) are solid.
Lastly, there's "Think Like a Man," an ensemble romantic comedy inspired Steve Harvey's self-help book. It was not screened for Utah critics.