★★★ (out of four) “Happening” (R for disturbing material/images, sexual content and graphic nudity; 100 minutes; in French with English subtitles): “Happening,” Audrey Diwan’s Golden Lion-winner at last year’s Venice Film Festival and based on the 2001 memoir by celebrated French author Annie Ernaux, is set in 1963 France but the period detail isn’t prominent. Instead, it’s an abortion tale that feels as if it could it could take place in many places, long ago or today. Full review here. Multiple theaters. — Jake Coyle, The Associated Press
★★½ “On the Count of Three” (R; 86 minutes): “On the Count of Three” is marketed as a “darkly comic” movie. Well, there’s dark comedy and there’s darker comedy, and then there’s comedy like this — so dark that you wonder if the two words can realistically coexist in one sentence. So it’s not clear in which genre to place this edgily confident if bumpy and unsettling directorial debut from talented comedian Jerrod Carmichael, a buddy movie that begins with said buddies (Carmichael directing himself and Christopher Abbott) pointing loaded guns at each other with the intention of firing at the same time. And just a warning: The sense you might get right then and there of “I’m really not sure I can watch this” will likely stay with you for the full 86 minutes. Full review here. SIFF Cinema Uptown. — Jocelyn Noveck, The Associated Press
“Firestarter” (R; 94 minutes): In this reboot of the 1984 film of the same name (and adapted from the titular Stephen King book published in 1980), a young girl gains the power of pyrokinesis and her father (Zac Efron) must protect her from a secret government agency that wants to control her and her newfound ability. Multiple theaters.
“The Tale of King Crab” (not rated; 105 minutes; in Italian and Spanish with subtitles): How does one become known as the King Crab? First, as a drunken outcast with a vendetta against a prince, you start a fire that gets you exiled to the hostile Tierra del Fuego. Then you embark on a quest to locate a mystical treasure, one that may redeem you — or cause further misery. Grand Illusion.