Two-time Oscar winner Denzel Washington just got his eighth nomination for “Roman J. Israel, Esq.” Playing an L.A. lawyer caught in a moral trap of his own devising, this is Washington back in the kind of straight-up serious roles he played in 2012’s “Flight” and 1993’s “Philadelphia.” But we have never seen him playing a character this multilayered. Highly recommended if you’re weary of films whose inhabitants are rendered in monotone shades of good, bad or predictable.

COLIN COVERT