The Angry Birds Movie
⋆⋆⋆ out of four stars
Rated: PG for rude humor and action.


If you’ve ever played the mobile video game "Angry Birds," you might have found yourself wondering — why am I sling-shotting cartoon birds at grinning green pigs? Why are these birds so angry? What have the pigs done to deserve this destruction? “Angry Birds,” the movie, is here to fill in that back story, to answer questions that may or may not have been asked, and provide motivation for the avian rage. The film, from a screenplay by “Simpsons” writer Jon Vitti, proves to be more than just a gimmick, and doesn’t skimp on any of the quirky wackiness that you might expect from a film about blob-shaped, flightless birds battling pigs.
Katie Walsh, Tribune News Service


Men & Chicken
⋆⋆ out of four stars
Unrated: Adult themes and sexual innuendo. In Danish with English subtitles.
Theater: Lagoon.


Say this for “Men & Chicken”: The title says it all. Danish director Anders Thomas Jensen delivers an absurdist, fitfully unpleasant meditation on animal instinct and the civilizing power of tolerance and love in a bizarre story of interspecies relationships that resembles “The Island of Dr. Moreau” by way of Kierkegaard. Jensen positions “Men & Chicken” as a fablelike ode to humanism and tolerance, but his obsession with brutish sexuality and mean, slapstick humor makes that claim feel unearned and glib. It’s often as harsh as heartfelt, cruel as coolly observant.
Ann Hornaday, Washington Post


Dark Horse
⋆⋆⋆ out of four stars
Rated: PG for thematic elements and language.
Theater: Edina.


Who can resist a good horse story? Simply and directly made, “Dark Horse” is a rousing documentary about Welsh villagers who chip in a modest sum to buy and train a racehorse, and find they have a winner. It’s a consolation and a distraction for the inhabitants of a working-class town still reeling from the closing of local coal mines. The story is loaded with drama, including a serious injury that could have led to the horse’s euthanization. Filmmaker Louise Osmond clearly aimed to make a crowd-pleaser, and succeeds.
Walter Addiego, San Francisco Chronicle