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Movies

Movie capsules: Short reviews of what’s in theaters

New releases

Jerusalem At the crossroads and flashpoint of three major religions — Christianity, Judaism, and Islam — Jerusalem is the most contested piece of real estate on earth. This IMAX spectacular largely does what it’s supposed to do: fascinate, educate, and visually wow the audience. We get impressive inside views of distinct urban quarters and holy sites like the Dome of the Rock. But where are the military checkpoints? That quarter of “Jerusalem” feels whitewashed. (45 min., unrated) (Ethan Gilsdorf)

Money for Nothing: Inside the Federal Reserve The Federal Reserve System would not seem like a natural subject for a documentary. Writer-director Jim Bruce’s many efforts to make it sexier and more visual — jokey graphics, clips from cartoons and movies — are at best distracting. More important, there’s the muddle-headedness of his argument that the Fed is the enabler of pretty much all of our economic ills. (102 min., unrated) (Mark Feeney)

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The Patience Stone A startling fantasy of Muslim feminist empowerment that allows the Iranian-born actress Golshifteh Farahani to put on what amounts to a one-woman show. She plays an Afghan wife whose husband lies in a coma; she fills the silence with monologues of anger, fear, and lust. The film’s stagey but stunning. In Farsi, with subtitles. (102 min., R) (Ty Burr)

Prisoners At 146 minutes, it often groans under its own self-importance, but Denis Villeneuve's kidnapping thriller — about the disappearance of two little girls — is as gripping as it is grueling. Hugh Jackman plays the most volatile of the four parents and Jake Gyllenhaal is the smart, increasingly stressed detective on the case. With Viola Davis, Terrence Howard, and Maria Bello. (146 min., R) (Ty Burr)

Salinger An ambitious but laughably overwrought attempt to tell the story of reclusive “Catcher in the Rye” author J.D. Salinger. Burdened with ludicrous dramatic reenactments and an overbearing orchestral score, the movie epitomizes everything in the culture from which Salinger himself fled. It is, as Holden Caulfield would put it, phony. (123 min., PG-13) (Ty Burr)

½ The Short Game Josh Greenbaum’s documentary follows eight young golfers as they compete for world championships. The real drama begins when their parents show up and start talking. What Greenbaum captures is compelling, and occasionally uncomfortable to watch. Make no mistake, though: These kids can play. (100 min., PG) (Michael Whitmer)

A Single Shot A new entry in the shaky subgenre of rustic noir, David M. Rosenthal’s adaptation of Matthew F. Jones’s novel relies on atmosphere and squalid details to disguise the film’s predictability. Derivative of previous films such as “A Simple Plan” and “No Country for Old Men,” its lack of dramatic tension and credible characters leaves it shooting blanks. (116 min., R) (Peter Keough)

½ Thanks for Sharing An engagingly didactic drama about sex addiction and recovery. The producers hope to minimize your queasiness with a strong cast — Mark Ruffalo, Tim Robbins, Gwyneth Paltrow, Alecia “Pink” Moore — and a script that keeps you involved with the characters, even as they run a predictable route of struggle and qualified triumph. (112 min., R) (Ty Burr)

You Will Be My Son Gilles Legrand’s melodrama has the makings of genuine tragedy, with its tale of a Lear-like Saint-Émilion estate owner who passes over his own son for that of his dying partner when choosing the heir to his vineyard. Unfortunately, the fine cast toils in vain; the characters lack depth and complexity, and there’s not much juice to be squeezed from Legrand’s sour grapes. In French, with subtitles. (102 min., R) (Peter Keough)

The Wall (“Die Wand”) An unnamed woman (Martina Gedeck from “The Lives of Others”) visits a remote Austrian mountain valley and runs into an invisible barrier that cuts her off from the world. The constant chatter of voice-over undercuts the visually stunning, brooding psychological journey of isolation and survival. Yet ultimately “The Wall” prevails as a bleak and beautiful exploration of what binds us to the animal world, and exposes our tenuous, unromantic place in nature. In German, with subtitles and English voice-over. (108 min., unrated) (Ethan Gilsdorf)

½ When Comedy Went to School This documentary wants to buckle and burnish the Borscht Belt. It certainly does that. Love is lavished upon the place like sour cream on blinis. Unfortunately, the documentary does something else, too. It answers that age-old question: What happens when a can’t-miss subject gets missed? Robert Klein narrates. Interviewees include Jerry Lewis and Sid Caesar. (77 min., unrated) (Mark Feeney)

Find an archive of reviews at www.boston.com/movies.

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