Reel-View Ratings: The Bigger The Beard, The Better The Movie



Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) is a black man dating Rose (Allison Williams), a white woman, and the time has come for him to meet her parents. One problem: They don’t know he’s black. What sounds like a rom-com premise becomes a decidedly funny but decidedly scary horror flick in the very capable hands of Jordan Peele. Every scene is touched with racial tension — not the “blatant racist” variety, but the “I voted for Obama” enlightened variety (which is arguably worse). Peele’s story falls apart in the last act, but his needle-precise accuracy in capturing and conveying the pain, fear and agony of racism today makes this a film worth viewing.

Opens Feb. 24 in wide release



Three Arab women living in Israel find themselves pushing back against society’s expectations of them — as women, as Palestinians, as Arabs — and find solidarity in one another. It’s the expected outcome, sure, with no real surprises or twists: We know that the women aren’t accepted as they are, we know that that isn’t what should or will define their self-worth, we know they will grow and transcend their surroundings. So while it isn’t exactly ground-breaking, it’s a refreshing window into the lives of a little-seen group in between the headlines, in between the partisanship, from a little-seen angle. Plays at 1 and 7:30 p.m. Feb. 26, and 1 p.m. Feb. 28 at Doris Duke Theatre



An unlikely collaboration between Japan’s renowned Studio Ghibli and Dutch-British animator Michael Dodok De Witt is this wordless story of man vs. nature. A man is lost at sea before winding up on a deserted island. Despite his attempts to escape, a large red sea turtle blocks his path. He gives up. He meets a mysterious, also silent woman. The whole thing is an allegory (of course it’s an allegory). The film tends to drag (most children will not like it; don’t be fooled by the fact that it’s a “cartoon”) but patient viewers will be rewarded with rich, breathtaking visuals, as well as a reminder that we live in nature’s world — and not the other way around.

Opens Feb. 24 at Kahala Theatre