Capsule listing of current releases

By Los Angeles Times

“The Armstrong Lie” — This documentary follows cyclist Lance Armstrong’s return from retirement in 2005 in an attempt to win an eighth Tour de France and the eventual scandal that resulted from his admitting to the use of performance-enhancing drugs following a federal criminal investigation. Directed by Alex Gibney. (2:03) R.

“Ass Backwards” — Now grown up and living in New York City, two childhood best friends take a cross-country trip back to their hometown and try to win a beauty pageant that eluded them in their youth. With June Diane Raphael, Casey Wilson, Alicia Silverstone and Bob Odenkirk. Written by Raphael and Wilson. Directed by Chris Nelson. (1:40) NR.

“Billy and Buddy” — An 8-year-old boy takes in an abandoned cocker spaniel and the two test their family’s patience in this film based on Jean Roba’s comic strip set in 1970s France. With Franck Dubosc, Marina Fois and Charles Crombez. Written and directed by Alexandre Charlot and Franck Magnier. In French with English subtitles. (1:22) NR.

“The Book Thief” — A young girl transforms the lives of those around her when she is sent to live with a foster family in Nazi Germany in this adaptation of the novel by Markus Zusak. With Sophie Nelisse, Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson. Written by Michael Petroni. Directed by Brian Percival. (2:11) PG-13.

“The Broken Circle Breakdown” — In Belgium, two bluegrass enthusiasts — a tattoo artist and a banjo player — fall in love, but their relationship is tested by an unexpected tragedy. With Veerle Baetens and Johan Heldenbergh. Written by Carl Joos and Felix Van Groeningen. Directed by Van Groeningen. In Dutch with English subtitles. (1:50) NR.

“A Case of You” — A young writer smitten with the barista at his local coffee shop scours her Facebook profile for intel and tries to transform himself into her dream guy. With Justin Long and Evan Rachel Wood. Written by Long. Directed by Kat Coiro. IFC Films (1:32) NR

“Casting By” — A documentary exploring the unsung role of casting directors in Hollywood moviemaking. Directed by Tom Donahue. (1:29) NR.

“Cinemability” — A documentary examining the representation and portrayals of disabled and handicapped people in film and television. Narrated by Jane Seymour. Directed by Jenni Gold. (1:30) PG-13.

“The Falls: Testament of Love” — Two Mormon men who fell in love during their mission in a small Oregon town but haven’t spoken since are drawn back into each other’s lives. With Nick Ferrucci, Benjamin Farmer and Hannah Barefoot. Written and directed by Jon Garcia. (2:01) NR.

“Finding Mr. Right” — A pampered Beijing woman travels to Seattle to give birth to the son she hopes will help her win over her rich, married boyfriend, but her trip doesn’t go quite as planned. With Tang Wei, Wu Xiubo and Hai Qing. Written and directed by Xue Xialu. In Mandarin with English subtitles. (2:03) NR.

“How I Live Now” — In the near future, an American teen sent to live with her relatives in the English countryside begins adjusting to her new surroundings, until an escalating conflict in Europe changes everything. With Saoirse Ronan, George MacKay and Tom Holland. Written by Jeremy Brock, Tony Grisoni and Jack Thorne. Directed by Kevin Macdonald. (1:41) R.

“Medora” — A documentary about the Medora Hornets, an underdog high school basketball team whose on-court struggles mirror the economic woes of its once-prosperous Indiana factory town. Directed by Andrew Cohn and Davy Rothbart. (1:22) NR.

“The Motel Life” — Two hard-luck adult brothers go on the run in Nevada after one of them accidentally kills a boy with his car in the middle of the night. With Emile Hirsch, Stephen Dorff and Dakota Fanning. Written by Noah Harpster and Micah Fitzerman-Blue. Directed by Alan Polsky and Gabe Polsky. (1:25) R.

“Out Loud” — In modern-day Lebanon, six free-spirited friends — some straight, some gay — form a unique bond and test the strictures of Middle Eastern society. With Rudy Moarbes, Ali Rhayem and Jad Hadid. Written and directed by Samer Daboul. In Arabic with English subtitles. (1:42) NR.

“Paris Countdown” — Six years after a botched drug deal that led them to testify against a vicious criminal, two middle-aged Parisian nightclub owners are forced to reckon with their past. With Olivier Marchal and Jacques Gamblin. Written and directed by Edgar Marie. French with English subtitles. (1:55) NR.

“The Prime Ministers: The Pioneers” — A documentary tracing six decades of Israel’s history, from its founding into the early 21st century. Directed by Richard Trank. (1:55) NR.

“Red Wing” — In a small Texas town, an orphan boy grows into manhood, strikes out on his own and eventually returns home to the only family he has ever known. With Glen Powell, Bill Paxton and Luke Perry. Written by Kathleen Orillion. Directed by Will Wallace. (1:48) PG-13.

“Remington and the Curse of the Zombadings” — After being cursed by a vengeful drag queen, a lunkheaded jock finds himself turning gay, putting him on a collision course with a homophobic serial killer and a horde of flesh-eating zombies. With Martin Escudero, Lauren Young and Kerbie Zamora. Written by Raymond Lee, Michiko Yamamoto and Jade Castro. Directed by Castro. In Tagalog with English subtitles. (1:36) NR.

“Running From Crazy” — This documentary follows the actress Mariel Hemingway, granddaughter of the legendary writer Ernest Hemingway, as she explores her family’s disturbing history of mental illness and suicide. Directed by Barbara Kopple. (1:40) NR.

“Speciesism: The Movie” — A documentary about factory farming and the notion of “speciesism,” the assumption of human superiority over animals. Directed by Mark Devries. (1:34) NR.

“Symphony of the Soil” — A documentary about the importance of fertile soil and the impact it can have on environmental issues such as climate change and water scarcity. Directed by Deborah Koons Garcia. (1:44) NR.

“Thor: The Dark World” — The hammer-wielding demigod Thor battles to save Earth and his home world of Asgard from an ancient enemy in this sequel to the 2011 movie “Thor.” With Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston and Stellan Skarsgard. Written by Christopher L. Yost, Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely. Directed by Alan Taylor. In 3-D. (1:52) PG-13.

“The Wind Rises” — An animated biopic about Jiro Horikoshi, the designer of the Zero, Japan’s World War II fighter plane. With the voices of Hideaki Anno, Miori Takimoto and Hidetoshi Nishijima. Written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki. In Japanese with English subtitles. (2:06) PG-13.

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ALSO IN THEATERS

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“About Time” — A young man discovers that he can travel through time and also meets the love of his life, but he comes to realize his gift doesn’t necessarily make life’s ups and downs any easier to deal with. With Domhnall Gleeson, Rachel McAdams and Bill Nighy. Written and directed by Richard Curtis. (2:04) R.

“Captain Phillips” — A dramatic account of the story of Capt. Richard Phillips and the 2009 hijacking of the cargo ship Maersk Alabama by Somali pirates. With Tom Hanks, Barkhad Abdi and Barkhad Abdirahman. Written by Billy Ray. Directed by Paul Greengrass. (2:14) PG-13.

“Carrie” — A re-imagining of the 1976 horror tale in which a shy girl ostracized by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother is pushed too far and explodes in a telekinetic rage. With Chloe Grace Moretz, Julianne Moore, Judy Greer and Gabriella Wilde. Written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. Directed by Kimberly Peirce. (1:39) R.

“Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2” — Having previously endangered the world and then saved it from a machine that turned water into food, a young inventor learns that his contraption survived and is now creating dangerous food-animal hybrids. With the voices of Bill Hader, Anna Faris, James Caan and Will Forte. Written by Erica Rivinoja, John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein. Directed by Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn. (1:34) PG.

“The Counselor” — A respected lawyer’s dabbling in the drug-trafficking business quickly spirals out of control. With Michael Fassbender, Penelope Cruz, Cameron Diaz and Javier Bardem. Written by Cormac McCarthy. Directed by Ridley Scott. (1:53) R.

“Dallas Buyers Club” — A drama based on the story of Texas electrician Ron Woodroof, who battled the medical establishment and the law after being diagnosed with HIV in 1986 and began smuggling anti-viral medications from all over the world. With Matthew McConaughey, Jared Leto and Jennifer Garner. Written by Craig Borten and Melissa Wallack. Directed by Jean-Marc Vallee. (1:57) R.

“Despicable Me 2” — The seemingly reformed supervillain Gru is recruited by the Anti-Villain League to help save the world in this sequel to the 2010 animated film. With the voices of Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig and Al Pacino. Written by Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio. Directed by Chris Renaud and Pierre Coffin. In 3-D. (1:38) PG.

“Ender’s Game” — In a future where a hostile alien race has attacked Earth, the International Military trains a new generation of soldiers, and a shy but brilliant boy could represent the planet’s last, best hope for survival. With Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld, Harrison Ford and Ben Kingsley. Written and directed by Gavin Hood. (1:54) PG-13.

“Escape Plan” — An expert on structural security agrees to take on one last job — breaking out of a top-secret high-tech prison — but is then duped and wrongly imprisoned, spurring him to recruit a fellow inmate to help him escape. With Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jim Caviezel. Written by Miles Chapman and Arnell Jesko. Directed by Mikael Hafstrom. (1:54) R.

“Free Birds” — In this animated film, two turkeys travel back in time to the first Thanksgiving to try to get their kind off the menu. With the voices of Woody Harrelson, Owen Wilson and Amy Poehler. Written by Scott Mosier and Jimmy Hayward. Directed by Hayward. In 3-D. (1:31) PG.

“Gravity” — When their shuttle is destroyed during a routine spacewalk, a veteran astronaut and a brilliant engineer are stranded in space together. With Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. Written by Alfonso Cuaron and Jonas Cuaron. Directed by Alfonso Cuaron. In 3-D and Imax. (1:31) PG-13.

“Insidious: Chapter 2” — A young married couple seek to uncover the mysterious childhood secret that has left their family dangerously connected to the spirit world in this sequel to the 2011 film “Insidious.” With Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne and Lin Shaye. Written by Leigh Whannell. Directed by James Wan. (1:45) PG-13.

“Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa” — An elderly man and his 8-year-old grandson embark on a series of misadventures in this hidden-camera comedy. With Johnny Knoxville and Jackson Nicoll. Written by Knoxville, Spike Jonze and Jeff Tremaine. Directed by Tremaine. (1:31) R.

“Last Vegas” — Four old guys head to Sin City to celebrate when the group’s sworn bachelor finally proposes to his thirtysomething girlfriend. With Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Kline. Written by Dan Fogelman. Directed by Jon Turteltaub. (1:44) PG-13.

“Rush” — A drama about the rivalry between the 1970s Formula 1 racing stars James Hunt, a charismatic Englishman, and Niki Lauda, his methodical Austrian counterpart. With Chris Hemsworth, Daniel Bruhl and Olivia Wilde. Written by Peter Morgan. Directed by Ron Howard. (2:03) R.

“12 Years a Slave” — In the antebellum United States, a free black man from upstate New York is abducted and sold into slavery, forcing him to fight for years to survive and maintain his dignity. With Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch and Paul Dano. Written by John Ridley. Directed by Steve McQueen. (2:14) R.

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