“The Veronica Mars Movie” (PG-13, 107 minutes, Warner): The audience for the big screen version of “Veronica Mars” will probably fall into one of three camps: those that loved the mid-2000s television show and would enjoy the movie even if it were a remake of “Grown-Ups 2” starring Kristen Bell; those that adored the teen-noir detective show and got so amped about the film that it could never live up to their expectations; and those that have never heard of Veronica Mars but think the spunky, acerbic heroine seems pretty swell.
It’s good to have Veronica back, but the movie lacks some of the verve and chemistry that made the series a must-see. Contains sexuality including references, drug content, violence and some strong language. Extras include a making-of featurette that focuses on the roughly 90,000 fans who contributed to a Kickstarter campaign to get the movie made.
“Still Mine” (PG-13, 103 minutes, Fox): Like the Academy Award-winning “Amour,” “Still Mine” is a love story in which the protagonists are, refreshingly, not hard-bodied Hollywood hotties. The surprisingly moving but clear-eyed Canadian film about a couple in their 80s even shows us, if only briefly, the wrinkled naked flesh of its stars, James Cromwell and Genevieve Bujold, playing a long-married couple who are still physically intimate. Based on a true story, the film by writer-director Michael McGowan (“Saint Ralph”) is structured around the efforts of Craig (Cromwell) to build a more manageable house for his increasingly forgetful wife, Irene (Bujold), after she falls and breaks her hip. Craig, a laconic, can-do farmer in rural New Brunswick, runs afoul of the local bureaucracy when he tries to build the home himself, without plans and with unapproved lumber he has milled. On one level, it’s a David-and-Goliath tale of conflict. On one side is a stubbornly old-fashioned man; on the other is the modern system, represented by an equally stubborn building inspector (Jonathan Potts), who keeps trying to shut down Craig’s little project for code violations, each of which Craig tries to address with the help of his lawyer (Campbell Scott) and his engineer grandson (Zachary Bennett). Eventually, the legal and technical obstacles start seeming more personal than professional. At this point, Craig rises up in anger as the hero we’ve been waiting for him to become to fight the system. Contains mild crude language, brief nudity and sensuality.
Also: “Making the Rules” (romantic drama starring Jaime Pressly and pop singer Robin Thicke), “All in Good Time” (romantic comedy), “Desert Riders” (documentary), “Simon and the Oaks” (Sweden), “Separate But Equal” (1991, Sidney Poitier stars in TV drama, remastered, CBS/Paramount), “Generation War,” “Call Me Crazy: A Five Film” (Lifetime anthology of five short films that explore the impact of mental illness on people’s lives, with celebrity input from Jennifer Hudson, Melissa Leo, Octavia Spencer and others), and “Blazing Saddles 40th Anniversary” (1974, Blu-ray release with added extras)