‘Free State of Jones’ is messy, necessary history

Matthew McConaughey plays Newt Knight, who led a rebellion of poor Mississippi whites and blacks against the Confederacy during the Civil War and Reconstruction.

Blake Lively stars in Jaume Collet-Serra’s “The Shallows.”

★ ★ ½ | Movie Review

There’s some teeth in shark movie ‘The Shallows,’ starring Blake Lively

Just when you thought this might be nothing more than flashing skin and shark jaws, Lively and director Jaume Collet-Serra defy expectations.

Sarah McKinley Austin (left) in the title role of “Matilda the Musical” at the Boston Opera House.

THINGS TO DO

The Weekender: ‘Dory,’ rubber ducks, and classic-rock heaven

Fun things do this weekend in Boston and beyond.

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma (left) and producer Morgan Neville.

Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Project shines in stirring Morgan Neville documentary

“The Music of Strangers” is a new documentary about Ma’s pan-cultural endeavor.

Latest Movies headlines

★½ Movie Review

‘Independence Day’ sequel lacks the charisma of the 1996 original

When did the Apocalypse get so generic?

New on disc: “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,” “Kung Fu Panda 2,” Eye in the Sky”

New on disc: “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,” “Kung Fu Panda 2,” Eye in the Sky.”

doc talk

In ‘Speaking,’ revisiting sites of unspeakable violence

AJ Schnack’s documentary jolts viewers with haunting audio over serene scenes.

MOVIES

How the fight for animal rights came to captivate two lauded documentarians

Should those animals that show higher cognitive autonomy have the same protective legal status as human beings? The new documentary “Unlocking the Cage” examines the contentiousness around the issue.

Lucy Dahl recalls real life encounters with the BFG

The daughter of children’s author Roald Dahl remembers growing up with bedtime stories of a Big Friendly Giant, now taking a bow in Steven Spielberg’s “The BFG.”

Summer movies preview

SUMMER MOVIES PREVIEW

//c.o0bg.com/rf/image_90x90/Boston/2011-2020/2016/05/02/BostonGlobe.com/Lifestyle/Images/Movies.jpg Coming to a theater near you: sequels, spinoffs, and remakes

The summer movie season is upon us again.

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Want the Globe’s top picks for what to see and do each weekend e-mailed directly to you? Sign up now for The Weekender.

Summer Arts Preview

summer arts preview

//c.o0bg.com/rf/image_90x90/Boston/2011-2020/2016/05/12/BostonGlobe.com/Arts/Images/Sundayartsfront-band.jpg What to see and do this summer

From dance to music, TV to art, there’s a lot going on in Boston and beyond.

Four stars go to...

//c.o0bg.com/rf/image_90x90/Boston/2011-2020/2015/11/17/BostonGlobe.com/Arts/Images/1j3WNV_INJACKSONHEIGHTS_05_o2_8697534_1439322182[1].jpg Four-star reviews by the Globe

Films given four-star reviews by Globe critics Ty Burr, Janice Page, and Peter Keough and the former Globe critic Wesley Morris.

Special section

Movie Review

//c.o0bg.com/rf/image_90x90/Boston/2011-2020/2015/12/16/BostonGlobe.com/Metro/Images/8136ad5f9b7146088a9494745f09f031-4598d222f4e14ba88d46ddca851ee09c-0-9894.jpg Launch of ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ takes the faithful full circle

The new “Star Wars” is great fun, if not a great film. It consciously embraces the funky, handmade garage aesthetic of the 1977 original.

More Movies headlines

David Farrier directed “Tickled” with Dylan Reeve.

In Focus

Making ‘Tickled’ was no laughing matter

Filmmakers David Farrier and Dylan Reeve have been subjected to harassment and threats ever since they looked into the secrets of Competitive Endurance Tickling.

Todd Solondz

Todd Solondz talks about his ‘sad comedies’

The writer-director visited Boston recently to promote his new film, “Wiener-Dog.”

What movies and shows has your favorite newscaster been in?

Spoiler alert: probably “House of Cards.”

When giant monsters attack, you can count on Anderson Cooper

To explain disasters and superhero showdowns to awed moviegoers, Hollywood relies on the men and women who frame breaking stories for real.

Matthew McConaughey stars in the Civil War-era film “The Free State of Jones.”

THINGS TO DO

The Weekender: McConaughey, monster trucks, and the art of wonder

Fun things to do this weekend, in Boston and beyond.

Elle Fanning in Nicolas Winding Refn’s “The Neon Demon.”

Movie Review

The dark, surreal face of modeling

Danish provocateur Nicolas Winding Refn offers a darkly surreal portrait of LA’s modeling scene, with Elle Fanning as the film’s ingénue.

David Farrier, Richard Ivey, and a tickle subject in “Tickled.”

Movie Review

Documentary ‘Tickled’ is more than skip deep

What could be sinister about the phenomenon of “competitive tickling?” Much more than journalist David Farrier expected when he started investigating.

A chimpanzee named Merlin, in a scene from “Unlocking the Cage.”

Movie review

Chimps are people too in ‘Unlocking the Cage’

Documentarians Chris Hegedus and D.A. Pennebaker chronicle a lawyer’s quest to have chimpanzees recognized with legal protections.

Elle Fanning in Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn’s “Neon Demon.”

Director Nicolas Winding Refn sees ‘Neon Demon’ as an adult fairy tale

Barely a minute into speaking with the director, he starts asking the questions. His first, posed with curiosity and amusement: “How was the movie?”

This image released by Disney shows the character Dory, voiced by Ellen DeGeneres, in a scene from

‘Finding Dory’ is the highest-grossing animated debut of all time

The Pixar sequel far surpassed its already ocean-sized expectations to take in $136.2 million in North American theaters.

William Shatner will appear at the three-day event at the Seaport World Trade Center.

William Shatner to mark ‘Star Trek’ anniversary at Comic Con in Boston

The three-day event is scheduled for Aug. 12-14 at the Seaport World Trade Center.

Chris Strompolo in front of the fake boulder he made to look like the one in “Raiders of the Lost Ark.”

Shot-for-shot ‘Raiders’ remake took 35 years

A new documentary tells the decades-long story of the Mississippi schoolmates that recreated the Indiana Jones epic “Raiders of the Lost Ark.”

Sacha Baron Cohen and Mark Strong star in “The Brothers Grimsby.”

DVD Releases

Sacha Baron Cohen overdoes it again in Brothers Grimsby’

New releases on disc include “The Brothers Grimsby” and “Midnight Special.”

Norman Lear in “Norman Lear: Just another Version of You.” The film’s creators, Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady, will receive the Special Achievement in Documentary Storytelling Award.

Nantucket Film Festival faces the future as it turns 21

Last year the Nantucket Film Festival celebrated its 20th birthday. Now it must meet the challenge that confronts all 20-year-olds. Turning 21.

Paul Sapiano’s “Driving While Black” will screen as part of the Roxbury International Film Festival.

scene here

Perfect timing for Roxbury film festival

The Roxbury International Film Festival — New England’s largest film festival celebrating people of color — opens its 18th year with the feature “Driving While Black.”

doc talk

Spinning ‘Yarn,’ among other things

Films examine knitting, abortion clinic laws, the Black Panthers, Cuban music, and animal rights.

Peter Berg works out at Peter Welch’s Gym in South Boston.

In the ring with ‘Patriots Day’ director Peter Berg

During the nearly two months he’s been in Boston, Berg has come to Peter Welch’s Gym every day to hit the heavy bag.

FILE - In this April 22, 2016 file photo, Ricky Gervais attends Tribeca Talks After the Movie:

Ricky Gervais to return to ‘The Office’ for Netflix movie

Netflix has acquired the film, titled ‘‘David Brent: Life on the Road,’’ in which Gervais will reprise the painfully awkward title character.

Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart in the buddy comedy “Central Intelligence.”

★ ★ | Movie Review

‘Intelligence’ is stuck between the Rock and a dumb place

Despite the title, the only smarts here come from Dwayne Johnson, who is very funny as a former high school nerd turned big, buff, insecure CIA super-spy.

Ellen DeGeneres

Ellen DeGeneres never forgot her tiny fish friend Dory

Ellen discusses her role in the new film “Finding Dory.”

Hank (voice of Ed O’Neill), an octopus, and Dory (voice of Ellen DeGeneres), a blue tang, in “Finding Dory.”

★ ★ ★ ½ Movie Review

Pixar’s ‘Finding Dory’ is as good as ‘Finding Nemo’

“Finding Dory” soars — or swims, as the case might be.

Brian De Palma on the set of “Scarface” with Al Pacino, from the film “De Palma.”

Movie Review

‘De Palma’ catalogs a filmmaker’s obsessions

Brian De Palma was the demon imp of the New Hollywood filmmakers of the 1970s, and this excellent documentary reminds us that the man’s still out there cranking.

Movie Review

In ‘Genius,’ great writing comes with bromance

Book editors get their big-screen due in this dramatic depiction of the close working relationship between Max Perkins and Thomas Wolfe.

Andrew Stanton, director “Finding Dory” and Rockport native, at the movie’s premiere in LA earlier this month.

Fish tales from ‘Finding Dory’ director Andrew Stanton

Oscar-winning director Andrew Stanton discusses the sequel to “Finding Nemo.”

Top: Director Ang Lee will be honored in Provincetown.

Movies

Director Ang Lee: ‘on the Edge’ and in Provincetown

The Provincetown Film Festival honoree talks about his career.

Ben Affleck and Matt Damon.

names

Ben Affleck posts about Matt Damon for #NationalBestFriendsDay

Affleck posted old photos of his longtime BFF to Instagram.

Muhammad Ali in New York in 1970. Two documentaries focus on Ali’s politics and fight against his draft evasion conviction.

in focus

Two films probe Muhammed Ali as a man who fought injustice

Like many legends, Ali means different things to different people at different times.

Omar Kennedy in Emily Abt’s “Daddy Don’t Go.”

Doc Talk

Against the odds: films about overcoming adversity

The documentary “He Named Me Malala” follows the story Malala Yousafzai who defied the Taliban prohibition against educating girls.

Sissy Spacek in “Carrie.’’

Notable moments from 10 Brian De Palma films (plus one music video)

We randomly selected 10 Brian De Palma movies, threw in a relevant music video by a certain New Jersey rocker, and went looking for a single notable highlight from each.

Scott Townsend in “Thirsty,” which will screen June 15 at the Provincetown film festival.

SCENE HERE | local films, festivals, and faces

Some local angles to the Provincetown International Film Festival

It may boast plenty of titles from distant shores but the festival also celebrates local connections.

Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny in “The X-Files.”

‘The X-Files: The Event Series,’ ‘10 Cloverfield Lane,’ and ‘Eddie the Eagle’ arrive on disc

Capsule reviews of three new DVDs.

Madison Wolfe stars as a young British girl who is believed to be possessed by a demon in “The Conjuring 2.”

Movie Review

More ‘Conjuring’ unleashes the demons

“The Conjuring 2” review: Paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren save a poltergeist-plagued working-class family in London.

Lin-Manuel Miranda, Renee Elise Goldsberry, Phillipa Soo and Jasmine Cephas Jones in “Hamilton,” which goes into the Tony Awards Sunday night with a record 16 nominations.

THINGS TO DO

The Weekender: Dragons, punk rock, and European nudes

Everything fun to do this weekend around Boston.

Viacom executive may get $63m if boss is sacked and he doesn’t get job

Lots of corporate chieftains have golden parachutes, but it’s rare for them to be triggered when another executive takes the fall.

From left: Woody Harrelson, Dave Franco, Daniel Radcliffe, Lizzy Caplan, and Jesse Eisenberg in “Now You See Me 2.”

Movie Review

Magic and crime reunite in ‘Now You See Me 2’

Director Jon M. Chu makes sure that the sequel is as flashy and splashy as the original.

Claudine Vinasithamby and Jesuthasan Antonythasan in Jacques Audiard’s “Dheepan.”

Movie Review

Palme d’Or winner ‘Dheepan’ is mostly gold

This 2015 Cannes prize-winner moves with the steely grace of director Jacques Audiard’s best-known work, “A Prophet.”

Movie Review

As a movie, ‘Warcraft’ is a brutal video game

It’s orcs versus man as Duncan Jones adapts the gaming standard setter for the online role-playing crowd.

Renee Zellweger in 2013.

names

Renee Zellweger ‘found anonymity’ during break

Zellweger is opening up about her six-year absence from Hollywood.

The sequel ‘‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows’’ scored $35.3 million in its weekend debut.

AT THE BOX OFFICE

‘Turtles’ sequel underwhelms, women drive ‘Me Before You’

Turtle power isn’t all that strong the second time around, according to comScore estimates, but not all is bleak in the cinemas.

Cuzin Toma, Mihai Comanoiu, and Teodor Corban in Radu Jude’s “Aferim!”

Movie Review

At MFA, two films of strange worlds and odd characters

These worlds are as strange as those depicted in “X-Men: Apocalypse” and “Alice through the Looking Glass,” but without the special effects.

Martin Moran.

Names

For Martin Moran, ‘Spotlight’ struck a nerve

The themes of the Oscar-winning film about the sexual abuse of young parishioners by Catholic priests were fraught and familiar for the actor.