If you need an excuse to hide from the lingering wildfire smoke inside a cool, dark theater, or if you're just excited about all the great movies playing right now, you have plenty of options to choose from this weekend. You could indulge in romantic-comedy gold in the form of Crazy Rich Asians, glimpse the world of competitive jigsawing in Marc Turtletaub's Puzzle, or watch some rad '80s horror revival in Summer of '84. Follow the links below to see complete showtimes, tickets, and trailers for our critics' picks, and, if you're looking for even more options, check out our guide to the biggest and best movies this month, our complete movie times listings, or our film events calendar.
Movies play from Thursday to Sunday unless otherwise noted.
1968: Expressions of a Flame
As part of the 1968: Expressions of a Flame retrospective series, our own Charles Mudede will introduce two short films: The Young Puppeteers of Vietnam (about teenage cultural resistance through the art of puppetry) and No Vietnamese Ever Called Me N***** (David Loeb Weiss’s documentary about black people in Harlem protesting the Vietnam War).
Northwest Film Forum
Ant-Man and the Wasp
While Ant-Man and the Wasp is fun, funny, and exciting, it also runs the risk of being incomprehensible to those uninitiated in the ways of Marvel. The first Ant-Man, while it showed promise in casting Rudd as the gentle, dad-bod superhero we’ve been waiting for, fell flat in a number of places and wasn’t nearly as funny as it could’ve and should’ve been. (The underuse of Rudd’s awkward, sweet natural charm bordered on egregious.) But Ant-Man’s visual playfulness saved the day: A movie about a tiny Paul Rudd had a unique opportunity to show audiences micro and macro perspectives, opening a whole new world of creativity and comedy. Happily, Ant-Man and the Wasp follows through on that stuff and goes even further with scale-shifting action sequences. More importantly, this film uses Rudd exponentially better, giving him plenty of opportunities to be goofy and charming and Paul Rudd-y. SUZETTE SMITH
AMC Pacific Place
Based on retired police detective Ron Stallworth’s 2014 memoir Black Klansman, director Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman stars John David Washington (son of Denzel Washington) as the first Black cop on the Colorado Springs police department in the early 1970s. Answering a recruitment ad in the local newspaper—and a knack for talking on the phone using his best “white guy” voice—Stallworth gets in good with the local Klan in Colorado Springs. But his attempt to infiltrate the organization hits an obvious stumbling block when it comes time to meet in person. Enter fellow police officer Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver), a nonpracticing Jew who agrees to pretend to be Stallworth in person. It’s difficult to know what to make of Lee’s latest joint. As with many of his other films, BlacKkKlansman constantly feels like Lee’s not sure what tone he wants to hit, so he hits them all, often with the subtlety of a brick to the face. It’s a solid work, albeit one that’s flawed in the same ways that nearly all of Spike’s best films are flawed. DAVID F. WALKER
In rapidly gentrifying Oakland, Collin (Daveed Diggs) is trying to survive his last three days of probation when the slightest infraction will send him back to jail. However, his best friend Miles (Rafael Casal) is white, wild, and reckless. Collin should avoid Miles, but he doesn’t. While trying to get home before curfew late one night, he witnesses a rogue cop pursue and shoot a fleeing black man. CARL SPENCE
AMC Pacific Place
Carole Lombard: Queen of Comedy
The cool, brainy star of 1930s cinema acted in great movies like My Man Godfrey and Hitchcock’s Mr. and Mrs. Smith. The final screening of this weekly SAM series will be To Be or Not to Be, about a troupe of actors in Nazi-occupied Poland who fool SS officers with their aptitude for disguises.
Seattle Art Museum
Cinema Under the Stars: 'Coco'
The “Coco” in question is the oldest living relative of the film’s young protagonist, Miguel, but the story is driven by Miguel’s passion for becoming a musician—and the conflicted relationship he has with his family, who label music as “bad” for reasons he has yet to learn. But Miguel is tenacious when it comes to performing and after his abuelita smashes his guitar, Miguel steals the guitar of a famous ancestor. Since taking from the dead is a big no-no, Miguel crosses over into the Land of the Dead. Coco ends up being an exceedingly tender kids’ film with deep themes about mortality, ancestry, and memories—and any adult with a soul will be moved, too. JENNI MOORE
Crazy Rich Asians
Crazy Rich Asians is romantic-comedy gold that should be celebrated not only for its cast but also for its perfect execution of light, breezy escapism. It centers on the relationship between NYU economics professor Rachel Chu (Constance Wu) and her boyfriend, Nick Young (Henry Golding). Only when Nick takes Rachel to a buddy’s wedding in Singapore does she discover his family is richer than God. From its stunningly attractive cast to its setting of gold-plated opulence, Crazy Rich Asians is pure eye candy. And with its modern take on boy-meets-girl that shows us a film can still be funny without anyone pooping their pants, Crazy Rich Asians is heart candy, too. This will become a touchstone romantic comedy, and it better not be another 25 years before there’s another movie like it. ELINOR JONES
Dennis Hopper's 'The Last Movie'
This very unlucky film by Dennis Hopper, who'd just scored a hit with Easy Rider, was undermined by on-set catastrophe, drug-fueled rampages, and critical contempt. Upon its release, The Last Movie plunged into obscurity, but now it's back in 4K restoration. The story: An actor in a Western shot in Peru stays on after his shoot and begins a quest for gold, and the divide between reality and fiction starts to blur.
Northwest Film Forum
Ugh, the agony of being a middle-schooler. Kayla is a quiet kid being raised by a single dad. She has no close friends and drifts through her school days not being noticed by anyone. She reaches out to the world through her inspirational YouTube videos (“The topic of today’s video is being yourself”), but nobody is watching. She desperately wants to connect, to be appreciated by someone who isn’t just her dad (“If people would talk to me at school, they would find out that I am really funny and cool and talkative”). This is the first feature film by writer/director Bo Burnham (a stand-up comedian and former teen YouTube sensation!), who refreshingly puts the adolescent girl perspective front and center, unfiltered by Instagram. All the problems of young teenhood are on display here: awkward social skills, skin problems, trying too hard, and feeling too much. Elsie Fisher as Kayla is both extraordinary and completely unremarkable. The film is funny and sad and excruciating and hopeful. Eighth grade is the worst; Eighth Grade the movie is wonderful. Winner of best film and best actress for Fisher at this year’s SIFF. GILLIAN ANDERSON
Half the Picture
Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love and Basketball, Beyond the Lights) describes the day she got rejected from film school as the worst of her life. Instead of moving on to something else, she wrote the school an impassioned letter, and two days later, she got in. Would a man have done the same? Possibly, but he would've also had more choices. Prince-Bythewood says there was nothing else that she wanted to do. Dozens of other women explain how they got into the field in Amy Adrion's timely documentary, Half the Picture. Aside from their personal experiences, they talk about unconscious bias, sexual harassment, the scarcity of female film critics, and other obstacles and opportunities. So, it's a lot of talk, but as on-screen conversations go, it's an essential one. KATHY FENNESSY
Northwest Film Forum
Incredibles 2 simply isn’t as tightly tied together as the first. Its villain, the Screenslaver, isn’t as key to defining Elastigirl’s character as Syndrome was to Mr. Incredible’s in the first film—so when everything climactically comes together in the third act, Incredibles 2 ultimately packs a weaker thematic punch. This isn’t really a knock, though. What Incredibles 2 (slightly) sacrifices in cohesion and heart it makes up for with action and comedy. He opens Incredibles 2 with back-to-back set pieces that quickly put the previous film’s finale in the rearview; he closes the film with a team-based triumph that any three X-Men flicks combined couldn’t compete with; and when he goes for the gag (which is often), it feels like Chuck Jones-era Looney Tunes via classic-era Simpsons (which Bird himself helped make classic). Incredibles 2 isn’t as good or affecting as the first, but it is prettier, louder, faster, and funnier—and if you have to make a trade, that’s not a bad one. BOBBY ROBERTS
Meridian 16 & Varsity Theatre
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
I totally understand why people object to these films and their CGI manipulations, but I am helpless before the allure of plausible dinosaurs wreaking havoc on humans. I thought the original Spielberg ones were killer. I thought the Joe Johnston third sequel was killer. I thought the reboot Jurassic World was killer. And I think this new one, again starring Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, both of whom I can usually live without, looks, guess what: killer. I love films with dinosaurs chasing and killing people. It’s what movies are for. SEAN NELSON
Madonna's 60th Celebration with 'Desperately Seeking Susan'
I had a friend who was a die-hard Madonna loyalist. Whatever Madge put out or starred in, my friend was 100 percent on board, and she often took me along for the ride. Which means I saw a lot of Madonna films, from the wretched (like Body of Evidence, which I am pretty sure Willem Dafoe wants to forget as much as I do) to the almost good (Evita). But 1985’s Desperately Seeking Susan was, by far, the best of the lot. It’s an entertaining comedy of errors that follows a bored New Jersey housewife (Rosanna Arquette) who gets caught up in the life of an exciting stranger (Madonna) she discovers via the personals, and—amid a series of events that involves a case of mistaken identity, amnesia, and a pair of stolen Egyptian earrings—experiences a finding-herself moment. But the film is so good because it serves as a nostalgic snapshot of a Madonna that many of us have forgotten existed: youthful, fresh, on the come-up (the film dropped less than five months after Like a Virgin), and confident without that overinflated sense of self-importance that came with her superstardom. It also marks the debut of “Into the Groove,” arguably one of the sexiest dance songs of the era. LEILANI POLK
Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again
Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again is the most opposite of reality a movie can get. It is a universe of music and light and love, completely devoid of cynicism, hate, and ugliness. Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again is a musical filled with ABBA songs. It stars some of the most likable white people out there, including Amanda Seyfried, Christine Baranski, Colin Firth, and Cher. Lily James plays a young Meryl Streep, living her best late-1970s life and hooking up with tons of hot dudes. It's important to be engaged, but mental-health breaks are important, too, and while you could just silence your phone and try to ignore each news alert signaling our further descent into doom, it'll be much better to watch Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again and fully immerse yourself in pure, batshit joy. ELINOR JONES
Meridian 16, AMC Seattle 10 & Admiral Theater
The Miseducation of Cameron Post
Even though this movie deservedly won the top prize at Sundance, I wasn’t initially sure we needed another story about a teenage lesbian forced to go to pray-away-the-gay conversion camp. However, a hell of a lot has changed since 1999 when But I’m a Cheerleader came out. Cameron Post (Chloë Grace Moretz) is sent to the camp after being caught with her pants down with another girl on her prom night. The irony is that sending gay kids to the same place provides them with a sense of community and the ability to discover they are not alone in the world. While not all of the kids make it out unscathed, Cameron is able to form a secret support group to survive. Infused with humor without being campy, this is a sophisticated and refreshingly honest adaptation of the Emily M. Danforth novel of the same name. CARL SPENCE
SIFF Cinema Uptown
Mission: Impossible – Fallout
What Mission: Impossible - Fallout brings to the table is the best action choreography I’ve seen since Mad Max: Fury Road and a serviceably twisty espionage plot. Functioning as a pretty direct sequel to 2015’s Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, Fallout assigns Cruise’s Ethan Hunt and crew (Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames, and Rebecca Ferguson) a pretty standard “terrorists have nuclear bombs and that’s bad” scenario that gives them excuses to heist and fight and banter around Western Europe and Central Asia while dealing with an increasingly complex series of intelligence agency betrayals. But writer/director Christopher McQuarrie spoils a good thing by connecting a few too many vital plot threads to previous films in this decades-old, often-muddled series; even having recently rewatched Rogue Nation, I was still frequently baffled when characters started discussing the events of that film without context. In terms of pure action cinema, Fallout absolutely sings. Every punch cracks teeth, every bullet thuds against brick or body armor with a real sense of weight, and every stunt has a very real feel of risk to it. (Probably because there was.) BEN COLEMAN
Movies at the Mural: 'I Am Not Your Negro'
Park your bum on some blankets in front of the Mural and see free, highly enjoyable movies—this week, it's I Am Not Your Negro, the acclaimed James Baldwin documentary "full of unsettling answers," as Charles Mudede wrote. Each screening will be preceded by short films by Cornish students.
Movies in the Park with Scarecrow Video: 'Ponyo'
You can pretty much guarantee that anything with Hayao Miyazaki’s name attached to it will be superbly wrought, fantastically animated, and delivered with a fine dose of poignant storytelling. He has left a legacy of films in his (no longer retired, for now) wake, including Ponyo, which has its 10-year anniversary this year and is celebrated in a series of screening events happening across the country, which includes presentations in three Seattle and Bellevue area theaters. The anime fantasy is loosely based on The Little Mermaid (Hans Christian Andersen’s version, not Disney’s), about an austere, potentially malevolent warlock/sea king whose young amphibious daughter runs (swims) away from her home. The little boy, Sosuke, who scoops her from the waves believes she’s a goldfish, names her Ponyo, and introduces her to a small slice of his world before her father finds her and brings her back to their underwater kingdom. But Ponyo’s taste of food and friendship fuels her next escape, setting off a chain of events that will change her (and Sosuke) forever. This film gets me choked up every time. LEILANI POLK
Summer of '84
The '80’s horror revival just keeps on trucking. Summer of ‘84 proves to be a worthy addition to the movement, with both a knack for the old familiar steps, and the ability to hit some brand new creepy beats. Set within a sleepy Oregon suburb, the script by newcomers Matt Leslie and Stephen J. Smith follows a conspiracy-minded teenager (Graham Verchere) who suspects that the too-friendly cop next door (Mad Men’s Rich Sommer) may actually be a serial killer. When the evidence begins to gloppily pile up, he and his gang of affectionately stereotypical friends—horndog, nerd, husky kid—pick up their walkie-talkies and start investigating. It’s pretty rad, really. ANDREW WRIGHT
Susanna Nicchiarelli dramatizes the twilight of Nico (played by Danish actor Trine Dyrholm), the cavernous-voiced former singer of the Velvet Underground and later independent artist, as she reluctantly heads out on a last tour, struggles with drug use and mental illness, and tries to reconcile with her estranged son. It certainly looks downbeat, but perhaps also more nuanced and affecting than your average musician biopic.
One Sings, The Other Doesn't
When you think of Serious French Cinema, as embodied by Major French Filmmaker Agnès Varda (Faces Places, The Gleaners and I), you might not think of a joyful hippie musical about abortion, marriage, and sisterhood. Yet this 1977 Belgian-Venezuelan-French co-production is exactly that.
Peddler Movie Night: 'Wedding Crashers'
Head to Peddler's outdoor yet covered beer garden, where you can watch a movie while enjoying the summer breezes. (You can even bring your dog.) This week, watch Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson at their cutest as two divorced mediators who invite themselves to other people's weddings in Wedding Crashers.
I occasionally try to finish puzzles on the ferry to Orcas Island, but I never knew there was a world of competitive puzzling. Marc Turtletaub (producer of Little Miss Sunshine, Safety Not Guaranteed, and Loving) wonderfully directs this sweet journey of a woman who discovers her uncanny knack for puzzles and has an awakening to pursue a more extraordinary life beyond the confines of her ordinary family. Kelly Macdonald (Boardwalk Empire, Trainspotting) is pitch-perfect as Agnes, and Bollywood star Irrfan Khan makes a great puzzle partner and protagonist to open Agnes’s mind and heart to explore her dreams and desires. Midlife crisis stories have so rarely focused on a woman character, and Macdonald refreshingly illuminates Agnes’s spirit as she discovers how to live, love, and make her own path for the future. CARL SPENCE
SIFF Cinema Uptown
All hail Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Better known as “RBG” to her fans (and “Bubby” to her grandkids), at 85 years old, the US Supreme Court justice still has a fierce intellect, a duty to the law, and an immense inner and physical strength. Over the long course of her career, RBG repeatedly defended the rights of everyone to live free from bias, but, as Supreme Court correspondent Nina Totenberg says, Ginsburg “quite literally changed life for women.” And she’s still doing it. With intimate interviews with family and friends, as well as RBG herself, the film captures the life of a woman with a heart none of us wants to stop ticking. KATIE HERZOG
SIFF Cinema Uptown
SHRIEK! Under the Shadow
Evan J. Peterson and Heather Bartels curate this film and community education series that examines the role of women and minorities in horror films. They'll show the fascinating Iranian supernatural thriller about an isolated woman in repressive Iran during the Iran-Iraq war, and the terrifying creature that wants to steal her daughter.
Naked City Brewery & Taphouse
Sound and Vision Film Fest
For the first time, the megatheatre will focus on the harmony of sight and sound, with excellently soundtracked movies like Blade Runner and Blade Runner 2049, Mad Max: Fury Road (Black & Chrome), Mulholland Drive, Total Recall, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and Stop Making Sense.
Sorry To Bother You
When hiphop collective the Coup released their sixth album, Sorry to Bother You, front man Boots Riley, a former telemarketer and Occupy Oakland activist, described it as "a dark comedy with magical realism." That description applies equally well to his razor-sharp directorial debut. The title phrase, of course, is how telemarketers, like Cassius Green (Atlanta's and Get Out's Lakeith Stanfied), launch cold calls to potential customers. He's just a young dude trying to earn enough to graduate from his uncle's garage where he lives with his girlfriend, Detroit (Tessa Thompson), a performance artist in Julianne Moore-in-The-Big Lebowski mode. Riley grounds things in a loose semblance of reality before shit starts to gets weird. Every time Cash makes a call, marks (people on the other end of the line) hang up on him, so he tries on a Putney Swope-like white voice (voiced by David Cross in spectacularly geeky form). Marks love their unctuous new pal and buy crap they don't need, and Cash finally gets to ride the Mishima-inspired gold elevator to RegalView's top floor where the Power Sellers, a shallow gaggle of strivers, congregate. The more money he makes, the more of a jerk he becomes. If he's making more than he deserves, his first-floor colleagues, like Danny Glover's old-timer Langston, are making less, at which point a union organizer (Steven Yuen), the film's true hero, steps up to the plate. Riley's satire enters the nightmare realm of Lindsay Anderson's O Lucky Man!. Riley's ability to transfer his leftist politics intact from turntable to screen is truly miraculous. His film has a distinct look that ranges from pop-art bright to demonically dark, and Stanfield's lightly absurdist performance holds it all together. KATHY FENNESSY
AMC Pacific Place, AMC Seattle 10 & Ark Lodge Cinemas
Rooftop Movies After Hours: 'There's Something About Mary'
Unwind at the end of the week with a free movie and maybe a movie-inspired cocktail, like this week's There’s Something About Mary paired with a tall glass of "Have You Seen My Baseball."
Taste of Cement
Ziad Khaltoum's devastating documentary focuses on Syrian migrant construction workers who must cope with the strictures and prejudice of the Lebanese authorities (they have a 7 p.m. curfew every night) and the knowledge that their own homes are being destroyed. Important but painful viewing that reminds us of the horror of being displaced with no possibility of return.
Northwest Film Forum
Three Identical Strangers
What starts off looking like a standard issue Netflix doc about a zany family—replete with insulting reenactments and that creeping sense that you’ve just signed on for two hours with people who only think their story is worth telling—rapidly becomes one of the most complex, even shocking adoption stories you’ll ever hear. Short version: Within the space of a couple of days in 1980, three 19-year-old triplets who have never even heard of one another’s existence meet and become brothers, friends, and NYC media darlings. But the story of why they had never met—why, in fact, their existence was intentionally kept a secret—involves a conspiracy worthy of a psychological thriller. As the story unravels, you become astonished by the layers of complexity and injustice these three guys have experienced. And it doesn’t take long before your initial impressions are totally forgotten: These guys aren’t just lovable doofballs telling well-rehearsed chestnuts about their kooky life. They’re people who have suffered unimaginable hardship and now bravely submit it to further public scrutiny in the hopes of solving the mystery at the center of their lives. SEAN NELSON
AMC Seattle 10 and SIFF Cinema Uptown
Won't You Be My Neighbor?
The question isn't how much you will cry. The question, which only emerges days into the aftermath of seeing this extraordinary new documentary about the life and work of Fred Rogers, is this: What exactly are you crying about? Possibility number one: good old-fashioned nostalgia. A huge chunk of the film consists of clips from Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, the public TV show for children Rogers created, wrote, and performed multiple roles in for 33 years. Seeing the way he spoke directly to his viewers, making sure we knew we were valued, cared for, seen, and known is a powerful reminder of the early validation the show provided. And learning that this style of address arose from radical education theory, developed by Rogers himself (in conjunction with learned colleagues like Spock, Braselton, and Erikson), about the benefits of being candid with children, only deepens the admiration. But this footage also stirs up the memory of inarticulate childhood sorrow his attention helped to alleviate, taking you back to the time before you were capable of constructing the armor required for this nightmare of a world. Possibility number two: the impossibility of such a human existing again, either on television or, indeed, on earth. He represented a strain of religious conviction that seems inconceivable now. Through his show, he demonstrated the precepts of his faith—kindness, empathy, dignity, peaceful coexistence, safety, love—without ever once mentioning, or even gesturing toward, a deity. SEAN NELSON
Majestic Bay & SIFF Cinema Uptown