Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) and her fellow CIA operative Rick Ford (Jason Statham) pose as a “happy” couple as they go deep undercover to stop an arms dealer.
Photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox
Critical rating: 3 stars out of four
Directed by: Paul Feig (“The Heat,” “Bridesmaids”)
Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Jason Statham, Jude Law and Rose Byrne
Rated: R for language throughout, violence, and some sexual content including brief graphic nudity
The story: “Spy” is centered on a CIA analyst (Melissa McCarthy) who is promoted from her long-time desk job to an undercover assignment where she must try to stop a nuclear weapon from falling into the wrong hands.
The scoop: Writer-director Paul Feig becomes one of the industry’s most reliable comedy directors with a film that’s set to become a mainstream hit. “Spy” isn’t the most original picture to hit theaters in 2015, but it is a consistently funny Hollywood concoction that entertains while poking good-natured fun at the espionage genre. Melissa McCarthy does most of the heavy lifting, but the excellent supporting cast – particularly Jason Statham in a rare comedic role – is likable as well.
From left to right, Paul Schlase, Tony Revolori, Tilda Swinton and Ralph Fiennes star in “The Grand Budapest Hotel.”
It is a solid week for home video with new offerings ranging from a lightweight animated movie to the latest from visionary writer-director Wes Anderson.
Alden Ehrenreich, left, and Alice Englert play star-crossed lovers in “Beautiful Creatures.”
R-rated films, including action-adventure efforts from two big-name stars, dominate this week’s home video releases.
Robert Downey Jr. plays the title character in “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.”
Two sequels lead this week’s crop of home video releases. One is the follow-up to a Nicolas Cage superhero film; the other is Robert Downey Jr.’s latest take on Sherlock Holmes.
Matt Damon, right, and Anna Jacoby-Heron try to survive a deadly viral outbreak in “Contagion.”
This week’s home video releases range from a lightweight tribute to working mothers to a terrifying thriller about a fictionalized pandemic.
Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin make a connection in “It’s Complicated.”
This week’s DVD releases are anchored by Heath Ledger’s last feature film and a wonderful comedy starring Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin.
Carey Mulligan received a best actress Academy Award nomination for her portrayal of a teen girl who has an affair with an older man in “An Education.” The film also received Oscar nominations for best picture and best adapted screenplay.
This week’s major video releases include an update of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes character, a children’s movie featuring singing chipmunks and an Oscar-nominated drama about a teen girl who falls for an older man.