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  • The Lion King

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- Advances in moviemaking technology allow a story that could only previously be told as a cartoon to be enacted, so to speak, by animals. And so we get "The Lion King" (Disney). Director Jon Favreau's remake of the 1994 animated musical -- also the basis for the Broadway hit that opened three years later and is still running -- uses a blend of live-action techniques and computer-generated imagery to retell a tale so familiar it represents a touchstone of contemporary culture.

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  • Crawl

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- What Steven Spielberg's "Jaws" did for sharks, director Alexandre Aja's deliberately claustrophobic chiller "Crawl" (Paramount) sets out to do for alligators. The result involves some undeniably frightening moments but also an amount of bloodletting the casual moviegoer will find excessive.

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  • Beat Saber

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- Very few games these days can leave you breathless. But "Beat Saber" achieves that effect in the course of just one song. Produced by Beat Games, this virtual-reality rhythm title requires players to combat incoming flying objects with a lightsaber while grooving to the selected music track. The future has arrived -- and it's a fun experience for the entire family.

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  • Stuber

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- With a shared-economy premise that's no doubt meant to be timely and an odd-couple pairing as hoary as David Letterman's beard, "Stuber" (Fox) takes viewers for a spin. But the result is no joy ride.

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  • Midsommar

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- All dressed up as slow-moving psychological horror, "Midsommar" (A24) relies on the stale trope of feckless naive visitors to a primitive tribe that specializes in unnatural practices.

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  • Dauntles

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- Monsters are ravaging the world, and only you can end their rampage in "Dauntless," the latest free role-playing title from Epic Games. With its bright Pixar-esque graphics, easy accessibility and freedom from most morally objectionable content, "Dauntless" will delight a wide range of age groups.

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  • Annabelle Comes Home

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- 'Tis the season, so it would seem, for devilish dollies. First, someone in Hollywood had the bright idea of rebooting the odious "Child's Play" series, setting maniacal Chucky back on the rampage.

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  • Yesterday

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- Fans of the lads from Liverpool will rejoice over the mostly amiable Beatles-themed comedy "Yesterday" (Universal). Parents of teens anxious to patronize the film, however, will have mixed feelings, given the lapses in behavior and language it includes.

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  • Anna

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- In Latin and Greek, the name Anna means "full of grace." In the violent thriller "Anna" (Summit), the eponymous leading lady is anything but. Rather, Anna (Sacha Luss) is a comely assassin for the Russian KGB., as easy on the eyes as she is handy with a knife and gun. Director Luc Besson ("Nikita," "Lucy"), who also wrote the screenplay, has crafted a stylish game of cat and mouse which will keep viewers guessing as often as Anna changes sides and works for the enemy.

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  • Toy Story 4

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- Just how good are the hotshots behind "Toy Story 4" (Disney)? So good that, by the time the closing credits roll, moviegoers will likely feel more emotional connection to an animated spork than they have to the vast majority of live-action human characters they've ever seen on screen.

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  • Child's Play

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- The nicest thing that can be said about the reimagined horror film "Child's Play" (Orion), it that is just 88 minutes long. Any longer and it could be designated a method of torture.

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  • Shaft

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- Viewers' reaction to "Shaft" (Warner Bros.), the fifth movie in a series dating back to 1971 and ultimately derived from the novel by Ernest Tidyman, will largely depend on how seriously they take its title character's tainted personal and professional morality.

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  • Men in Black: International

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- With "Men in Black: International" (Columbia), director F. Gary Gray serves up an amusing and stylish reboot of the sci-fi comedy franchise that kicked off in 1997. While sometimes dicey dialogue and a bizarre offscreen encounter indicate his film is best for mature audiences, its restraint in other respects makes it possibly acceptable for older adolescents.

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  • Late Night

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- The decidedly improbable and scattershot comedic elements of "Late Night" (Amazon) give the film the look of something that had its dents hammered out in the editing room. It's still an uplifting story, however, scripted by Mindy Kaling, briskly directed by Nasha Ganatra. The film is partly based on Kaling's own experiences as a TV scribe trying to get her voice heard in an all-white, all-male writers' room and eventually expressed by a late-night TV host.

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  • Emanuel

    NEW YORK (CNS) -- On June 17, 2015, a security camera captured the image of Dylann Roof walking into the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. He proceeded to participate in a Bible study taking place in the basement.

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