Here are snapshots of what our reviewers thought of the movies opening this week in the Seattle area. (Star ratings are granted on a scale of zero to four.)
★★★½ “Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am” (PG-13; 120 minutes): The Nobel Prize-winning writer has a voice like a warm blanket, and it spreads across Timothy Greenfield-Sanders’ documentary irresistibly; when it’s over, you feel like a beloved friend has left the room. Full review. SIFF Cinema Uptown. — Moira Macdonald, Seattle Times arts critic
★★★½ “Halston” (not rated, for mature audiences; 115 minutes): Frederic Tcheng’s documentary celebrates the fashion designer’s work but shows more interest in the man — and the unexpected corporate drama — behind it. His story, like fashion’s hemlines, was one of great highs and lows. Full review. SIFF Cinema Uptown. — Moira Macdonald
★★ “Stuber” (R; 93 minutes): In “The Big Sick,” Kumail Nanjiani endearingly played an Uber driver in love. In “Stuber,” Nanjiani also plays an Uber driver in love, and it’s also kind of endearing. Kind of. Unfortunately, it’s a performance plopped into a movie that’s more interested in stunts, gunfire and carnage than in Nanjiani’s particular brand of gently sardonic comedy. Full review. Multiple theaters. — Moira Macdonald
“The Silence of Others” (not rated, for mature audiences; 96 minutes): After Gen. Francisco Franco’s death in 1975, Spain faced the question of how to address crimes committed during nearly four decades of dictatorship. A 1977 amnesty law offered a solution, absolving Franco’s political opponents while shielding his supporters from prosecution. For the principal subjects of “The Silence of Others” — victims of human-rights abuses during Franco’s regime, or in some cases their descendants — that amnesty law has proved a formidable obstacle to justice. Much of this documentary follows the progress of a lawsuit that a group filed in 2010 in Argentina. Of course, the mere existence of legal proceedings puts pressure on Spain to attend to its past. That’s certainly the goal of this documentary, which is informative, if not always as specific as it might have been. (The New York Times does not provide star ratings with reviews.) In Spanish, with English subtitles. SIFF Film Center. — Ben Kenigsberg, The New York Times
“Crawl” (R; 87 minutes): While trying to save her father (Barry Pepper) during a hurricane in Florida, a young woman (Kaya Scodelario) finds herself trapped in a flooding house with killer alligators. Multiple theaters.
“Summer Night” (not rated, for mature audiences; 98 minutes): This coming-of-age story focuses on intertwining friend-dramas, fueled by a lot of drinking, as they unfold against a backdrop of live music. Analeigh Tipton, Victoria Justice, Ellar Coltrane and Ian Nelson star. Grand Illusion.