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    Short reviews of what’s in theaters

    Perdita Weeks plays a scholar-adventurer in “As Above/So Below.”
    Universal Pictures via AP
    Perdita Weeks plays a scholar-adventurer in “As Above/So Below.”

    Previously released

    ½ As Above/So Below There will be no end to the found-footage horror genre, and this shoestring-budgeted bump and grind through the Paris Catacombs is just engaging enough to make a profit. Making the most of it is Perdita Weeks, who puts in a spunky performance as a scholar-adventurer seeking the Philosopher’s Stone. (93 min., R) (Peter Keough)

    ½ Calvary The theme of a messiah dying for our sins gets a ripped-from-the-headlines workout in John Michael McDonagh’s Irish indie, which casts Brendan Gleeson as a sage priest threatened with murder. The provocative Church discourse frequently elevates the movie above what’s a familiar pedigree — arthouse import showing us around a picturesque British Isles outpost exaggeratedly populated by characters who are odd, if not flat-out messed-up. (100 min., R) (Tom Russo)

    ½ Exhibition Joanna Hogg brings a unique, challenging style of filmmaking to this elusive allegory about a middle-aged artist couple who have decided to move from the London house where they live and work and which has become almost indistinguishable from their lives. A haunting look at contemporary anomie and the inadequacy of art to cope with it. (104 min., unrated) (Peter Keough)


    Guardians of the Galaxy In Marvel’s latest, Chris Pratt is a roguish space adventurer who teams up with a green-skinned assassin (Zoe Saldana), a cybernetic raccoon (Bradley Cooper), a walking tree (Vin Diesel), and a vengeful hardcase (Dave Bautista). The motley crew’s repartee makes for comedy that’s surprisingly consistent. (121 min., PG-13) (Tom Russo)

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    ½ If I Stay The limbo between life and death plays more like comedy than tragedy in this hackneyed adaptation of Gayle Forman’s YA novel. A car crash puts a cello prodigy into a coma. In an out-of-body state she wonders if she should resume her life. Most viewers would probably advise against it. (103 min., PG-13) (Peter Keough)

    ½ Life of Crime In this adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s novel “The Switch,” Jennifer Aniston plays a melancholy housewife who’s ransomed for $1 million. The hitch: Her husband (Tim Robbins) decides not to pay. Indie filmmaker Daniel Schechter tries to split the difference between Leonard’s humor and soulfulness; you’ll wish he didn’t focus so much on the straighter elements, which start to drag. (99 min., R) (Tom Russo)

    ½ Norte, the End of History Epic in length and almost claustrophobically intimate in point of view, Philippine director Lav Diaz’s updating of Dostoevsky’s “Crime and Punishment” follows the intersecting fates of an unhinged former law student and a family man. They are linked by a brutal murder, and divided by different philosophies of freedom and forgiveness. In Tagalog, with subtitles. (250 min., unrated) (Peter Keough)

    The November Man A newly belligerent Russia may prove a boon to a secret agent genre in need of new villains and themes, but this adaptation of an ’80s spy novel quickly succumbs to cartoonish violence. Pierce Brosnan remains classy as a CIA assassin brought out of retirement when the killing turns personal. (98 min., R) (Peter Keough)


    ½ The Trip to Italy Director Michael Winterbottom and stars Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon follow up 2010’s “The Trip” with more good food, bad impressions, and a tour of La Bella Italia. There are more solid laughs here than in a summer of Hollywood comedies, but coursing beneath the drollery is a river of melancholy. Sublime. (108 min., unrated) (Ty Burr)

    When the Game Stands Tall Jim Caviezel plays a revered high school football coach in the true story of Northern California’s De La Salle Spartans, who set a national record with 151 straight wins. The filmmakers mainly want to examine the rough circumstances and fallout of “The Streak,” which makes for a structurally glitchy inspirational exercise. (115 min., PG) (Tom Russo)

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