This Weekend in Film: January 17, 2014

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Critics' Pick ✔
Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

Russians still make the best movie villains. Since 9-11, Hollywood has been queasy about giving us fictional baddies from Arab countries -- the line between cheap stereotypes and real-life religious extremism is too blurry, too delicate. South American drug lords have had their day, and Albanians in bad sweaters just don't cut it. But ah! the Russian villains, with their tragic, poetic souls and political ruthlessness. No wonder Kenneth Branagh, the director of Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, also cast himself as one. It's the next best thing to ruling the world.

This week's critics' picks include Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, an adaptation of a Tom Clancy spy novel, When I Saw You, the second feature from writer-director Annemarie Jacir, and Like Father, Like Son, writer-director Hirokazu Kore-eda's story of what happens after two Japanese families are ruptured after learning that their six-year-old sons were switched at birth. Keep up with the Voice's film coverage over at villagevoice.com/movies and follow us on Twitter at @VoiceFilmClub.

Published on January 15, 2014

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