March will get off to a better start for renters than for Julius Caesar with several strong dramas sharing the shelves.
JACKIE – Natalie Portman top lines here as the widow of John F. Kennedy in a film that focuses on the days immediately following his assassination. It’s a string performance and it needs to be as the camera never leaves her side. This is only about her dealing with the tragedy and marshalling her strength to aid her children while aiding in the transition of power. John Carroll Lynch(Fargo) has a nice turn as LBJ and Peter Sarsgaard is also good as Robert Kennedy.
TRESPASS AGAINST US – This crime drama delivers on both fronts as it examines a family struggling to cope with a crumbling criminal legacy. Brendan Gleeson is good as father, whose son, Michael Fassbender, seems to be drifting away from the criminal life as his own son gets older. Gleeson’s character schemes to bring his son back into the fold by involving him in an elaborate heist . Suffice to say this will not end well and it delivers with solid acting and a tremendous chase sequence that should satisfy fans of crime action and criminal drama.
INCARNATE – A scientist, who has developed a way to enter someone’s unconscious mind, is tasked with a dangerous mission in this horror/drama. The movie finds him using his skills to enter the mind of a young boy who is being possessed by a powerful force. Turns out it is demonic, in nature, and it isn’t afraid of a guy in a lab coat. Not as good as the premise and it suffers by trying to jam this R-rated content into a PG-13 framework.
THE AMERICANS: SEASON 4 – This spy drama about Russian moles, Elizabeth and Phillip, posing as an American family just gets better with every passing season. This time out they delve heavily into the consequences of spying and its effects on three supporting characters, all female. They include: the daughter, Paige, of the moles; Nina, a Russian spy tasked with sleeping with an FBI agent; and Martha, a secretary in the FBI office who has secretly married Philip but doesn’t know he is using her to gather information from her office for the Soviets. Great stuff as these women deal with betrayal and finding out they are trapped in webs that may be impossible to get out of with their freedom or, even, their lives. Totally worth your time.
Tom Doty is a columnist for The Floyd County Times.