There are plenty of good films to watch at home this weekend. Here are three new releases that I highly recommend. You can read full reviews on my Victoria Advocate blog at https://www.victoriaadvocate.com/users/profile/jfriar/

“RADIOACTIVE” (Amazon Prime Video)

Rosamund Pike, Sam Riley, Anya Taylor-Joy, Simon Russell Beal

Rosamund Pike plays Polish scientist and chemist Marie Curie in the biopic that tells the extraordinary story of the first woman to win the Nobel Prize and the only woman and first person to win it twice. Her groundbreaking work alongside husband Pierre Curie (a very good Sam Riley) which resulted in the x-ray and then later the atomic bomb, asks the question, “Does the good outweigh the bad?” Anya Taylor-Joy (“Emma”) plays daughter Irene, who along with her husband Frédéric Joliot-Curie, won a Nobel Prize for their work in artificial radioactivity. A fascinating story with first-rate performances from Marjane Satrapi the director of “Persepolis.”

(3 ½ stars)

“THE RENTAL” (In theaters and On Demand)

Alison Brie, Dan Stevens, Sheila Vand, Jeremy Allen White

Actor Dave Franco slides into the director’s chair for this excellent thriller about two couples on vacay at a nice oceanside Airbnb when things take a turn for the worse after hidden cameras are discovered in the rented home. The solution isn’t as easy as calling the police or confronting the property manager as the situation escalates and the tension mounts. Franco’s impressive directorial debut dabs into John Carpenter territory for the finale.

(3 ½ stars)

“HOUSE OF HUMMINGBIRD” (kinomarquee.com)

Park Ji-hu, Kim Sae-byeok, Jeong In-gi, Lee Seung-yeonng

In one of the best films I’ve seen this year, 16-year old Park Ji-hoo plays a teenager coming of age in 1994 Seoul. The beautifully shot film gives the audience a taste of life in South Korea as we watch Eunhee (Ji-hu) deal with first love, an abusive brother, and a teacher who becomes the first adult to give the young budding artist any sort of attention. It’s a story of female empowerment filled with awkward situations, tragedy, and small outbursts of joy as the young female deals with life like a hummingbird in search of something sweet.

(4 stars)

Joe Friar is a member of the Critics Choice Association (Los Angeles) and the Houston Film Critics Society. A lifelong fan of cinema, he co-founded the Victoria Film Society, Frels Fright Fest, and is a Rotten Tomatoes approved critic.

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Joe Friar is a member of the Critics Choice Association (Los Angeles) and the Houston Film Critics Society. A lifelong fan of cinema, he co-founded the Victoria Film Society, Frels Fright Fest, and is a Rotten Tomatoes approved critic.

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