You might think choosing between Green Lantern and Mr. Popper’s Penguins at theaters this week is as easy as checking off the appropriate kids/no kids box. But it’s not quite that simple. First of all, both Green Lantern hero — and current EW cover star — Ryan Reynolds and Popper‘s Jim Carrey are Canadian! Which means… well, actually, not much. (Except they both probably make a mean poutine.) Another important factor, especially if you’ve got kids: Reynolds wears a CG spandex onesie to fight evil, while Popper’s penguins waddle through their entire movie wearing absolutely nothing. So that’s um… again, probably not that important. Sorry folks, I’ve got nothing.
Thank goodness EW employs actual critics to give us some real guidance here! Green Lantern got a C+ from EW’s Owen Gleiberman, who liked Reynolds (“easy on the eyes, and… the soul of likability”) but not the movie’s superficial spectacle. Meanwhile, Popper got a B, with Gleiberman noting that “this likable trifle [will] whisk you back to childhood” with its mix of earnest sentiment and flightless bird pratfalls. (All too rare in contemporary cinema, in our opinion.)
If you’re looking for something art house-y, there’s also plenty to pick from. The documentary Buck profiles a real-life horse whisperer; Page One: A Year Inside the New York Times is like Bring Your Audience to Work Day for the country’s pre-eminent newspaper; and The Art of Getting By is a teenage buddy dramedy with Emma Roberts and Freddie Highmore.
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