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Movie Stars

Movie capsules

New releases

½ The Central Park Five A scrupulous, singeing documentary by Ken Burns, his daughter Sarah, and her husband David McMahon, that reconstructs the notorious series of events that occurred in the spring of 1989 after a white investment banker was beaten and raped while running in Central Park. The film focuses on the five teenagers — four black, one Hispanic — who were convicted after falsely confessing to the crime. (119 min., unrated) (Wesley Morris)

Cheerful Weather for the Wedding If you simply can’t wait for the third season of “Downton Abbey” to begin, and you need to experience English people all clenched up on the day of two people’s nuptials, try Julia Strachey’s novel about a bride-to-be (Felicity Jones) and her cold feet. This movie adaptation has a lot of nattering but little tension, wit, or heat. (92 min., unrated) (Wesley Morris)

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½ The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Title notwithstanding, almost exactly as expected. More Middle-earth — the first third of Tolkien’s prequel story to “The Lord of the Rings” — Peter Jackson’s film has lots of sound and fury and not enough narrative momentum. Ian McKellan’s Gandalf and (joy) Andy Serkis’s Gollum return. In 3-D. (169 min., PG-13) (Ty Burr)

½ Hyde Park on Hudson A work of historical embroidery about Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s possible affair with his sixth cousin, this paints the 32d president as a creepy sexual predator and a heck of a guy. It’s as tone-deaf as movies get. Bill Murray is quite good as FDR, but Laura Linney gives a defeated performance in an impossible role. (94 min., R) (Ty Burr)

An archive of reviews is at
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