5 top films worth checking out in Santa Monica this week

Image: The Iron Giant/TMDb

In the age of streaming entertainment, it can be hard to leave the couch. But movie theaters still offer a special experience for those willing to get out of the house. Want to see what's out there? Take a look at this week's lineup of acclaimed movies showing on the big screen in and around Santa Monica.

Here are the highest rated films to catch, based on critical scores sourced from review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes. (Movie descriptions courtesy The Movie Database; showtimes via Fandango.)

Can You Ever Forgive Me?



When bestselling celebrity biographer Lee Israel is no longer able to get published because she has fallen out of step with current tastes, she turns her art form to deception, abetted by her loyal friend Jack.

Boasting a critical approval rating of 98 percent and an audience score of 84 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, "Can You Ever Forgive Me?" has gotten stellar reviews since its release on Oct. 19, with a consensus that "Deftly directed and laced with dark wit, 'Can You Ever Forgive Me?' proves a compelling showcase for deeply affecting work from Richard E. Grant and Melissa McCarthy." The film is nominated for three Academy Awards, includung Melissa McCarthy for Best Actress.

Catch it on the big screen at ArcLight Santa Monica (395 Santa Monica Pl., Suite 330) through Wednesday, Feb. 6. Click here for showtimes and tickets.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse



Miles Morales is juggling his life between being a high school student and being a spider-man. When Wilson "Kingpin" Fisk uses a super collider, others from across the Spider-Verse are transported to this dimension.

With a critical approval rating of 97 percent and an audience score of 84 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" has gotten stellar reviews since its release on Dec. 14. Per the site's summary of critic reviews, "'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse' matches bold storytelling with striking animation for a purely enjoyable adventure with heart, humor, and plenty of superhero action." The film is nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature.

Catch it on the big screen at AMC Santa Monica 7 (1310 3rd St.) and ArcLight Santa Monica (395 Santa Monica Pl., Suite 330) through Wednesday, Feb. 6. Click here for showtimes and tickets.

The Iron Giant



In the small town of Rockwell, Maine, in October 1957, a giant metal machine befriends a nine-year-old boy and ultimately finds its humanity by unselfishly saving people from their own fears and prejudices.

With a 96 percent critical approval rating and an audience score of 90 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, this '90s flick is a must-see. Per the site's overview of critic reviews, "The endearing 'Iron Giant' tackles ambitious topics and complex human relationships with a steady hand and beautifully animated direction from Brad Bird."

It's screening at American Cinematheque at the Aero Theatre (1328 Montana Ave.) on Friday, Feb. 1. Click here for showtimes and tickets.

BlacKkKlansman



Colorado Springs, late 1970s. Ron Stallworth, an African American police officer, and Flip Zimmerman, his Jewish colleague, run an undercover operation to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan.

With a critical approval rating of 95 percent and an audience score of 82 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, "BlacKkKlansman" has garnered plenty of praise since its release on Aug. 10. Per the site's overview of critic reviews, "'BlacKkKlansman' uses history to offer bitingly trenchant commentary on current events -- and brings out some of Spike Lee's hardest-hitting work in decades along the way." The film is nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

It's screening at ArcLight Santa Monica (395 Santa Monica Pl., Suite 330) through Wednesday, Feb. 6. Click here for showtimes and tickets.

RBG



Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, now 84 and still inspired by the lawyers who defended free speech during the Red Scare, refuses to relinquish her passionate duty, steadily fighting for equal rights for all citizens under the law. Through intimate interviews and unprecedented access to Ginsburg's life outside the court, RBG tells the electric story of Ginsburg's consuming love affairs with both the Constitution and her beloved husband Marty--and of a life's work that led her to become an icon of justice in the highest court in the land.

With a 95 percent critical approval rating and an audience score of 78 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, "RBG" has become a favorite since its release on May 25. Per the site's summary of critic reviews, "'RBG' might be preaching to the choir of viewers who admire Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, but it does so effectively." The film is nominated for two Academy Awards, including Best Documentary Feature.

Catch it on the big screen at American Cinematheque at the Aero Theatre (1328 Montana Ave.) on Thursday, Jan. 31. Click here for showtimes and tickets.
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