BACK TO THE FUTURE PART II “Marty! We have to stop! These movies are only getting worse!”

recommended 3 Women
See Film, this issue. NW Film Center's Whitsell Auditorium.

See Film, this issue. NW Film Center's Whitsell Auditorium.

American Sniper
See review this issue. Various Theaters.

recommended The Babadook
Australian horror movie The Babadook is gonna scare the babadook out of you. Writer/director Jennifer Kent's first feature is incredibly smart and insightful. Here's a horror film that's legitimately good (!), and has thoughts about the hardships of motherhood, the frustration of being a child, and the psychological dangers of tamping down feelings. COURTNEY FERGUSON Academy Theater, Hollywood Theatre, Laurelhurst Theater, Living Room Theaters, VOD.

Back to the Future Part II
A stark, dystopic view of the far-flung future of 2015, from visionary director Bob Zemeckis (Beowulf, The Polar Express) starring Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, Elisabeth Shue as Alex P. Keaton's girlfriend, and a pair of self-lacing shoes that don't even look all that cool, you guys. Seriously. They're fucking ugly. Academy Theater.

See review this issue. Various Theaters.

Church of Film
Church of Film presents two screenings: On Wed Jan 14 is "Psychedelic Canada," a collection of filmmakers' work for the National Film Board of Canada, and on Mon Jan 19 is Son of the White Mare, Marcell Jankovic's 1981 animated take on Hungarian folklore. Hollywood Theatre, North Star Ballroom.

Heaven and Earth Magic
Harry Smith's cut-out animated film, created entirely by himself in his New York apartment. Includes a panel discussion with Dennis Nyback, Chuck Pirtie, and Eric Isaacson. Hollywood Theatre.

recommended Inherent Vice
The best mysteries are the unpredictable ones—and the unpredictable ones rely on quick-switches and surprise reveals, buried details and long-forgotten connections. So when I tell you that Paul Thomas Anderson's Inherent Vice has all of those things, and also that it flickers onscreen through a thick blur of marijuana smoke, it won't come as a surprise when I add that the movie makes hardly any goddamn sense. Maybe it does if you see it twice, or if you've read the Thomas Pynchon book it's based on, or if you—unlike me—possess enough foresight to sneak a joint into the theater. Or two, or three: Inherent Vice is two-and-a-half-hours long, and for some, that'll feel like a long time to be confused. For Inherent Vice's dubious hero, Doc Sportello (Joaquin Phoenix), that feels like a long time to be sober. ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters.

recommended Into the Woods
Fellow musical theater dorks: Worry not! This movie is not only true to the original Sondheim production, but is perhaps better on screen, with bigger giants, scarier witches, and more of those woods they're always singing about. ELINOR JONES Various Theaters.

recommended King: A Filmed Record—From Montgomery to Memphis
Sidney Lumet and Joseph L. Mankiewicz's 1970 documentary, collecting archival footage of Martin Luther King, Jr. Clinton Street Theater.

A 2003 documentary "about modern Japanese architecture, its roots in the Japanese tradition, and its impact on Nordic building tradition." Hollywood Theatre.

Little Accidents
After sustaining injuries in a mining accident, a boy returns to "normal" life in his small West Virginia town. Starring Josh Lucas and the never-not-fantastic Elizabeth Banks. Clinton Street Theater.

recommended The Long Goodbye
See Film, this issue. NW Film Center's Whitsell Auditorium.

Hey, a movie about a talking bear that wasn't screened for critics! This bodes well. Various Theaters.

Repressed Cinema
A monthly series "showing vintage and contemporary films that are obscure, neglected, and from the fringe." This month: Miss Leslie's Dolls, a horror tale about three students and their teacher getting caught in a strange woman's basement. From the director of All Men Are Apes. Hollywood Theatre.

Selected Short Films by Homer Groening
Animator Bill Plympton introduces a series of short films from Portland filmmaker Homer Groening. Groening's daughter, Lisa, will moderate a discussion panel on his life and work following the screening, with the panel featuring Plympton; Groening's son, Matt; Groening’s colleague, Tom Shrader; and film critic Ted Mahar. Hollywood Theatre.

Speak up at your peril: This sentiment punctuates Ava DuVernay's Selma, which takes on the 1965 Selma to Montgomery voting rights marches led by Martin Luther King, Jr., James Bevel, Hosea Williams, and John Lewis. DuVernay's willingness to engage with this particularly American history of violence sets Selma apart—portraying a movement on film is an impossible task, but if DuVernay has succeeded, it's in the way Selma forces a kind of reckoning for its viewer. MEGAN BURBANK Various Theaters.

"Oh, it's not the speed really so much, I just wish I hadn't drunk all that cough syrup this morning." Laurelhurst Theater.

Sundance Short Films
Eight short films from last year's Sundance Film Festival. Hollywood Theatre.

Liam Neeson hardly even kills anyone this time! Nobody really gets taken, either, which seems like a serious betrayal of the audience's trust. ERIC D. SNIDER Various Theaters.

recommended Unknown Passage
See Film, this issue. Hollywood Theatre.

Vampyros Lesbos
Jesus Franco's 1971 cult classic about lesbian vampires is known for almost as much for its soundtrack as it is for pushing the boundaries of horror. Hollywood Theatre.

The Wedding Ringer
See review this issue. Various Theaters.

recommended Wild
As a whole, Jean-Marc Vallée's adaptation of Cheryl Strayed's harshly beautiful memoir works phenomenally well, and at its best, it's as striking and intense as the book. ERIK HENRIKSEN Various Theaters.

recommended Zero Motivation
See review this issue. Living Room Theaters.