Freeze Frame: “Extraction” (R), “True History of the Kelly Gang” (R), “The Willoughbys” (PG)

Chris Hemsworth is a conflicted action hero in the excessively violent Netflix thriller, “Extraction.” Hemsworth plays a super skillful mercenary who is hired to rescue the kidnapped son of an Indian gangster who has been spirited off to Bangladesh. Heralded stuntman Sam Hargrave makes his directorial debut and brings some jaw-dropping stunt sequences to vivid life, placing them in exotic, unfamiliar locales. Problem is, the relentless commotion becomes repetitive and mind-numbing and the ethics of this story, written by “The Avengers” Joe Russo, are highly questionable. But if you want ceaseless, well-staged bloody action, “Extraction” is the movie for you.


In spite of its title, “True History of the Kelly Gang” is a fictional account of the life of famed Australian outlaw, Ned Kelly, based on Peter Carey’s popular novel. George MacKay, best-known for “1917,” plays Kelly, a bushwacker whose Robin Hood-like exploits took place in the 1870s. Essie Davis, Russell Crowe, Nicholas Hoult and Charlie Hunnam have colorful supporting roles. The filmmakers’ approach is extremely violent here, too. It’s like a punk rock version of history, punctuated with profane language and ambiguous morals. MacKay is fine, but the story progresses in fits and starts.


“The Willoughbys” is a colorful and completely wacky computer animated comedy based on the book by Lois Lowry. Will Forte, Ricky Gervais and Maya Rudolph lead the voice cast in the story of the world’s most neglectful parents and their four kids who decide to orphan themselves. It takes time to find its footing but is an energetic family offering. While it revels in a degree of outrageous cynicism, “The Willoughbys” is ultimately a sweet look at the nature of family.


Your local art house theaters are offering online viewing options for a number of intriguing movie titles. More information is available at,, and

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